Tangled Webb

Reverend Nadim Nassar, a Syrian-born Anglican priest living in Britain, keeps in touch with contacts in Syria. He also listens to various media reports of the crisis. In an interesting interview on Today with Justin Webb he remarked on how extreme the differences are between what he’s hearing on Arabic stations, Al Jazeera etc. etc. – and the BBC. I would have liked to hear exactly what he meant, but no luck.

Justin didn’t pick that up, but he did go up in my estimation when he gave William Hague a chance to advertise the hypocrisy of the government’s floundering foreign policy. Our intervention in Libya was on humanitarian grounds. Our non-intervention in Syria is on none-of-our-business grounds. Glad he cleared that up.

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6 Responses to Tangled Webb

  1. George R says:

    INBBC does not mention this in its servility to Organisation of the Islamic Conference dominated United Nations:

    “Syria to Join UN Human Rights Council, Despite Unleashing Death and Brutality on its Citizens”



  2. George R says:

    On Al Jazeera and INBBC, and their organisational and ideological connections:

    “Al Jazeera’s ‘Real News’ Comes With a Cost”


    Many ex-Beeboids, without having to bat an ideological eyelid, now work for the Emirate of Qatar’s Islamic TV satellite station, Al Jazeera English at its London base.

    [Extracts from above excellent article, bold type added]:

    “Lebanese-born scholar Walid Phares, now a fellow at Washington’s Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, has referred to Al Jazeera’s Arabic service as the ‘mothership of jihad ideology.’
    Phares sees Al Jazeera as shutting out true political diversity under a deceptive guise:
    ‘One of the most dangerous things that Al Jazeera does is basically kill the potential for an alternative voice or ideology inside the Arab and Muslim world…. Basically, they are enabling only the ideologies of Islamic fundamentalism or pan Arabism to express themselves. When it comes to the Kurds, for example, there is no voice. Sudan’s southern part? The case doesn’t exist. The Berbers in Algeria? Silence. (“Israel and the Media Challenge,”CAMERA conference, Nov. 2003)’

    “The network’s most popular program, Shariah and Life’ is hosted by Yusuf Qaradawi, a Brotherhood icon esteemed throughout much of the Arab world. Qaradawi deals with a broad range of topics, but he is primarily known outside the Muslim community as an advocate of putting Islamic religious law (sharia) above civil statutory law, as a vocal critic of American intervention in the region and as resolutely hostile to Israel. According to Germany’s Der Spiegel, Qaradawi asked Godto kill the Jewish Zionists, every last one of them.’ The Der Spiegel piece also commented on Qaradawi’s unique stance on women’s rights: ‘a woman does not have to ask her husband’s permission to blow herself up in an Israeli café.’ Qaradawi proposed at a 1995 Muslim Arab Youth Association conference in Toledo, Ohio that Europe and North America will become Islamic not through jihad but dawa, proselytization.”


    “Criticism of Al Jazeera has also come from within its own ranks. In an exposé by David Bauder  on March 27, 2008, former ‘Nightline’ reporter David Marash, who was recruited by Al Jazeera to be its anchor and face to American audiences, explained his decision to quit after two years, in part, because the anti-American bias at Al Jazeera English had become ‘so stereotypical, so reflexive.’
    Marash found the anti-American attitude came more from British administrators — many former BBC employees — than the Arabs. Their influence is readily seen. Al Jazeera’s English-language coverage resembles that of the BBC when it comes to certain topics, like Israel.
    With its continuous coverage of the region, both good and bad examples of news reporting are readily found. One has to be wary of cherry-picking the good or bad pieces to reinforce pre-existing opinions about the quality of its coverage.
    “Al Jazeera’s commentary pieces disproportionately present fringe political sentiments and are uniformly anti-Israel. The English-language web site opinion pieces are indistinguishable from what is found in far-left magazines like The Nation or on the even more extreme Counterpunch web site. A survey of the Web site on March 11, 2011 included pieces by Code Pink’s Medea Benjamin, aging radical icon Noam Chomsky, 9-11 truther’ Richard Falk and blame-Israel-firsters, M. J. Rosenberg and Robert Grenier. Repeated checks on other days confirm that these and other fringe extremists routinely appear. Their pieces exhibit a tiresome repetition of themes. For example, Rosenberg’s contributions invariably return to his obsession with blaming Israeli, AIPAC and neoconservative bogeymen, even turning the horrific murder of a Jewish family into an opportunity to lambast Israel.”


  3. sue says:

    Heartfelt thanks to Melanie Phillips for saying this – it’s what I was trying to say above. (In between the lines.) 🙂


  4. Bil says:

    As recently as yesterday I watched a programme on Al-Jaz where they reviewed the overall press coverage of the Bahranian unrest.


    Suprisingly, they were critical of their own coverage. They also compared the Saudi (Sunni) and Iranian (Shia) coverage and explained how the different press organisations worldwide each had their own agendas, including the BBBC and AL-Jaz.


    Incredible for one brought up on the BBBC to hear such an un-biased and balanced piece.


  5. David vance says:

    Great post title – somone should use that for a blog… 😀  


  6. Natsman says:

    I expect Libya, Syria and Egypt will be invited to join the EU before too much longer…