With its lauding Al Jazeera for its coverage in the late 1990s, savaging it during the Abu Ghraib ordeal of several years ago and again praising it for its coverage of the Arab Spring, the U.S. government’s attitude towards the Qatar-based network bounces like a ping-pong ball. Now that Al Jazeera will acquire Current TV for half a billion dollars, it is curious to see how the cable operators will react. Time Warner first dropped Current after news of the transaction, but after relentless criticism the company may reconsider its decision.

Last week Al Jazeera English asked for my thoughts on the deal and what it means for American journalism. I insist that it could transform American broadcast journalism, the quality of which has long been in decline. Al Jazeera English, however, has an incredible team of journalism, and delivers the best coverage of India, Africa, the Balkans, Latin America and of course--the Middle East. To hold a grudge against Al Jazeera because of what occurred several years ago is absurd . . . and if the BBC or CNN revealed the Abu Ghraib scandal, the network’s bid to purchase Current would not be an issue. Bring on the upcoming Al Jazeera America, let viewers watch it, and then let them make their own decision. Comb through Al Jazeera's coverage of Syria: enough said.

The embedded video, which ran on AJE’s Listening Poston January 12, is 25 minutes long: fast forward to 9:12 to hear my thoughts.

Image credit: Wikipedia (Kai Hendry)

 

 

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he is a business writer and consultant. His work is has also appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. He's pictured here in Qatar, one of the Middle East countries in which he takes a keen interest because of its transformation into a post-oil economy. Other areas of interest include sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). As of October 2013, he now lives and works in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.