The Princess and the Facebook Girl (Arab Media & Society)

Issue 5, Spring 2008 Once upon a time, in a kingdom far, far away, there lived a beautiful princess. Hers was a fairytale existence of spectacular palaces and footmen with gleaming swords and, of course, a handsome prince. But this princess was sad, for the voices of her people were but a whisper. It was […]

Satellite TV News and Arab Democracy (Journalism Practice)

Vol. 2 No. 1 Feb. 2008 — The red and white banners of Lebanon’s anti-Syrian protests in the spring of 2005 were a testament to the transformational power of the Arab media revolution. Without al-Jazeera and the new constellation of Arab satellite broadcasters, it is unlikely there would ever have been a “Cedar Revolution,” as […]

Insurgent TV Coming to a Satellite Near You? (CJR.org)

(Jan. 10, 2007) A controversial TV channel that is the voice of Iraq’s anti-American insurgents looks set to open another front in the propaganda war against the U.S. The head of Al-Zawraa, which airs footage produced by the Islamic Army of Iraq, says he has finalized a deal for the channel to be distributed on […]

Will Al-Jazeera English Find Its Groove? (CJR.org)

Bad news is often good news for journalists. Last week’s assassination of Lebanese opposition leader Pierre Gemayel may have been exactly that for Al-Jazeera English, the Westernized cousin of the channel the Bush administration loves to hate. It wasn’t so much that AJE triumphed in its coverage of the latest Lebanese crisis — far from […]

Look Who’s Fair And Balanced (CJR.org)

(Aug. 22, 2006) The summer of 2006 marked an important milestone for Arab media. Israel and Hezbollah were locked in a bitter conflict that would claim the lives of more than 150 Israelis and an estimated 1,000 Lebanese — a third of them children. Each day brought brutal new images of civilian casualties. On American […]

Open Season on Journalists in the Middle East (CJR.org)

The pen may be “mightier than the sword,” but in recent years, the sword has left a trail of spilled ink – and blood. It is time for an international law banning targeted attacks on the media. (Aug. 1, 2006) After the carnage of this past weekend in the Middle East, two previous incidents seemed […]

Caught between Iraq and the hard guys (The Daily Star Lebanon)

February 28, 2006 The visit to the Middle East last week by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza  Rice brought with it another reminder that American Middle East policy is firmly  wedged between Iraq and the hard guys. There were never any easy answers to the Middle East morass, complicated  further by the recent outbreak of […]

Reporting a revolution: the changing Arab media landscape (Arab Media & Society)

Vol. 1 2006 Camera-phone videos of Egyptian police torturing suspects posted on YouTube.com. Prostitution and masturbation discussed on satellite TV. The Iranian president reaching out to Arabs on his own blog. The times, as Bob Dylan sang in another context, are a’ changin’. Across the Middle East, new television stations, radio stations and websites are […]

A New Arab Media Rises From the Rubble (CJR.org)

CAIRO (Dec. 14, 2005) — In the explosion that killed An Nahar publisher Gebran Tueni in Beirut Monday could be heard the echoes of a new battle being waged in the Middle East. It is a conflict that pits the old guard of Arab politics against the young Turks of the Arab media. Tueni’s assassination is […]

Beyond Media ‘Dialogues’: Time to put away the champagne flutes (Arab Media & Society)

Issue 3, Fall 2007 “It’s the condescending attitude that I get tired of,” a top editor at one of the leading Arab satellite news channels recently told me. “I know they mean well; but it’s the whole tone.” We were on our way to the airport after the latest in the seemingly endless parade of […]