Al-Jazeera & Saddam Sitting In A Tree


It appears as if good ole’ Saddam was in bed with Al-Jazeera. Who woulda thunk it?

A videotape found in a pile of documents in Baghdad following the collapse of Saddam Hussein’s regime shows a former manager of the Al-Jazeera satellite channel thanking one of Saddam’s sons for his support and telling him that “Al-Jazeera is your channel,” the Asharq al-Awsat newspaper reported Sunday.

According to Asharq al-Awsat’s report, the tape of the March 13, 2000, meeting shows former Al-Jazeera manager Mohammed Jassem al-Ali telling Odai Saddam Hussein, “Al-Jazeera is your channel,” and Odai recalls that he proposed “some ideas” in previous meetings that led to “some changes” in political coverage, including the introduction of new hosts on Al-Jazeera programs.

Even tho it appears they fired the manager not long after the start of the war it does lend credibility to this charge from the Iraqi Interior Minister that the they were helping the terrorists

Iraqi Interior Minister Falah al-Naqib accused the Qatar-based al-Jazeera television channel of supporting terrorist groups and inciting them to violence.

“Al-Jazeera television is in itself an enemy of Iraq and is contributing to the expansion and promotion of terrorist activities against Iraqi forces and foreign troops,” Naqib said in an interview with the daily newspaper al-Sharq al-Awsat.

“Only al-Jazeera broadcasts tapes for the terrorist gunmen and their activities, and, according to my information, it is also involved in supporting these groups financially,” he said.

Naqib also pointed out that terrorist attacks dropped by 50 percent since Iraqi forces backed by U.S. troops invaded Fallujah two months ago. The Sunni Muslim city was a hotbed for insurgents who were blamed for violence against the U.S.-led troops and government forces.

Add in the fact Bahrain has banned the news organization along with Iraq.

On May 10, Bahrain Information Minister Nabeel Yacoub al-Hamer announced the banning of the Qatar-based Arabic TV station al-Jazeera from reporting inside its borders. Al-Hamer said that the ban had been imposed because al-Jazeera ?deliberately seeks to harm Bahrain?. The minister is reported to have stated that, ?It is a channel penetrated by Zionists.?

(The penetrated by zionists remark is quite humorous tho.)

Plus the fact the New York Stock Exchange banned the network from their floors.

The Arab TV network Al-Jazeera said Monday two of its reporters covering the New York Stock Exchange have had their credentials revoked because of the satellite station’s coverage of the war in Iraq.

Exchange spokesman Ray Pellechia denied the station’s war coverage was the cause. Citing “security reasons,” he said the exchange had chosen to limit the number of broadcasters working at the lower Manhattan exchange since the war began, giving access only to networks that focus “on responsible business coverage.”

And you have the makings of a organization falling apart…hopefully. We can all cross our fingers since we all know Al-Jazeera couldn’t be biased against the United States, especially after they ran the recent headline “The US knew about the tsunami”. Plus, Dinocrat pointed me to this editorial written by CNN head Eason Jordan described the following:

Over the last dozen years I made 13 trips to Baghdad to lobby the government to keep CNN?s Baghdad bureau open and to arrange interviews with Iraqi leaders. Each time I visited, I became more distressed by what I saw and heard ? awful things that could not be reported because doing so would have jeopardized the lives of Iraqis, particularly those on our Baghdad staff.

For example, in the mid-1990?s one of our Iraqi cameramen was abducted. For weeks he was beaten and subjected to electroshock torture in the basement of a secret police headquarters because he refused to confirm the government?s ludicrous suspicion that I was the Central Intelligence Agency?s Iraq station chief. CNN had been in Baghdad long enough to know that telling the world about the torture of one of its employees would almost certainly have gotten him killed and put his family and co-workers at grave risk.

On a side note, one part of that interview is quite disturbing

Then there were the events that were not unreported but that nonetheless still haunt me. A 31-year-old Kuwaiti woman, Asrar Qabandi, was captured by Iraqi secret police occupying her country in 1990 for “crimes,” one of which included speaking with CNN on the phone. They beat her daily for two months, forcing her father to watch. In January 1991, on the eve of the American-led offensive, they smashed her skull and tore her body apart limb by limb. A plastic bag containing her body parts was left on the doorstep of her family’s home.

Thanks go out to Little Green Footballs, Gindy, The Moderate Voice, Boker Tov, Boulder, MisterPundit, The Neo-Progressive, and Dinocrat for the tip on this story.

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