Al-Jazeera America, the soon-to-be-dead U.S. outpost of the Qatari government’s global television network, published an opinion essay on Thursday morning that satirized—subtly, but not that subtly—a number of new (or newly relaunched) media companies, including Mic, The New Republic, and Al-Jazeera America itself. Hours later, however, the network’s website replaced the entire essay with the following editor’s note:
When readers in the U.S. click on this hyperlink, they’ll be taken to an Al Jazeera America op-ed criticizing Saudi Arabia for an uptick in executions of prisoners for apparently political reasons. When international readers click it, they’ll get a 404 error. According to Al Jazeera itself, this discrepancy is by design.
Al Jazeera journalists Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed were among 100 people pardoned by Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi today, according to a Sisi spokesman. In 2013, the men were arrested along with a colleague on trumped-up charges of “conspiring with the Muslim Brotherhood to broadcast false news.”
Newly-inaugurated Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi says he will not pardon the three Al Jazeera journalists sentenced to jail yesterday for conspiring with the Muslim Brotherhood to report false news. "If we desire [strong] state institutions, we must respect court rulings and not comment on them even if others don't understand these rulings," he said last night, according to the Associated Press.
Three Al Jazeera journalists were convicted this morning in Cairo of conspiring with the Muslim Brotherhood to broadcast false news. Mohamed Fadel Fahmy and Peter Greste were sentenced to seven years in jail, and Baher Mohammed was sentenced to 10 years—the three additional years were for "possession of ammunition."
TV reporter and book author Brian Stelter isn’t supposed to write about cable news, given his recent try-out as the new host of CNN’s Reliable Sources, where Howard Kurtz policed the media (well, tried to) before signing with Fox News. But on Monday the Times published Stelter’s report on the cable news upstart Al Jazeera America, citing its executives’ plan to usurp established channels (such as Stelter’s potential employer). And today Stelter reported on Al Jazeera’s litigation against AT&T for dropping the network. Has a would-be media cop lost track of his own conflicted interests?
Early Wednesday evening, the New York Times' media reporter and expert DIY home decorator Brian Stelter dropped a "big one" and broke the news that Qatar-financed news organization Al Jazeera had completed a deal to purchase Current TV, Al Gore's low rated news channel best known for hiring and then firing Keith Olbermann.
Donald Rumsfeld, who during his time in the Bush White House labeled Al Jazeera Arabic "vicious, inaccurate and inexcusable," made news last week by praising the English network, saying he's now "delighted you are doing what you are doing." That was in an interview with David Frost. But he held another interview with the network that day that's just coming to light! It is truly something else, meaning it's scary and contentious.