Al Jazeera and the Palestine Question
Al Jazeera covers the Palestinian question as the essential Arab issue, and it presents Israel as the prioritized enemy of the Arab nation. It also presents the Palestinian struggle as a priority, the only struggle against despots. Al Jazeera was very keen on promoting “combatant and resistance axis” under the leadership of “the Islamic Republic of Iran” through camouflage of its criminal acts, although those cruel and severe acts are unprecedented. It presents the strength points of the alleged axis, and it takes the least opportunity to rationalize these strength points. It is also keen on presenting it too hard to defeat or overcome amongst the international or at least the regional powers. When this axis goes too far with perpetration of brutal crimes in frequency and intensity, it conceals these brutal crimes by presenting the “theory of conspiracy” that enemies of resistance axis, the West, definitely supported and managed these brutal crimes.
In the meantime, Al Jazeera was exploiting situations to incite public opinion against Arab countries, it started to jam “the voice of Iranian people”, getting onto the streets for protesting against the brutal violations perpetrated by the Iranian corrupt regime. Instead, Al Jazeera acclaimed that there were pro-Iranian government demonstrations in Tehran and several cities in Iran in a fact-reversing coverage that reflected an extra-ordinary media scandal.
Al Jazeera Advocates both nationalistic and patriotic dimensions
After this thorough monitoring of the most outstanding interests of Al Jazeera, we can say that the strategy of Al Jazeera is adopting both patriotic and nationalistic issues, and it is promoting those individuals who support those two topics like Muslim Brotherhood and Al-Qaida.
Going into details, we can point out bold contradictions lying within details, that are usually slipped by Al Jazeera. These contradictions were obviously manifested during the Syrian revolution.
At the beginning, there was a kind of real conflict between the nationalistic project and the patriotic one. That kind of collision began after the fall of the “Ottoman Caliphate” at the time the West began to replace Islamic nationalism by Arabic nationalism. At that time, nationalists looked upon patriotism as an “ignorance concept” where the social tie is based on the concept of a unifying factor or what it is called Arabism, rather than the tie of the Islamic nation, whereas nativists look upon nationalists as backwards reactionists and extremists.
With the process of time, the battle between the two sides calmed down, and there was some kind of rapprochement. There was a kind of rapprochement between the two rivals, nationalists and Islamists for two reasons:
First, the fulfillment of a caliphate dream proved to be unattainable after major changes took place in the world. Second, the Palestinian question combined both nativist and nationalist dimensions together since Palestine was „an Arab country“ where the “Al-Aqsa Mosque” is located.
When the Palestinian struggle got most ferocious in the 1970s, trends and movements soon supported the Palestinian struggle, so there was a kind of rapprochement between them.
This rapprochement was manifested in the birth of the “Islamic Nativist Conference” in Beirut back 1994, and Doha received the sixth session of the conference accompanied by a warm coverage by “Al Jazeera channel”. The conference – according to participants – presented several controversial files, and the file of a possible cooperation between nativists and Islamists was given a priority. Despite disputes confessed by participants between the two fractions, it was affirmed that the two entities agreed on principal issues and headlines, that aimed to figure out an Islamic civilized Arab project.
The Al Jazeera Network is a child of BBC, and it inherited a lot of documentaries from BBC, that tended to promote nativist vision on interpreting events. Al Jazeera worked on the incubation of the two trends, and it genuinely gathered the two, affirming the importance of the attendance of all parties: “combatant and resistance axis”, that includes “Syria, Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Qatar”. This axis, which raised the motto of Palestine’s liberation, and the axis of “political Islam” represented by the Muslim Brotherhood and the Al Tahreer Party (Liberation Party) which adopts the establishment of caliphate, together with the axis of a “military Islam” represented by Al-Qaeda. All these entities rhetorically adopted principal chaotic goals that led to the establishment of a Caliphate in order to strike despots and to target the Western interests.
The nationalistic project holds the West responsible for “conspiracy against the caliphate”, and the West in general as the arch-enemy of the nation’s interests. The nativist project deems the West responsible for the occupation of Palestine. As it adopts these two projects, Al Jazeera is antagonist towards the West, and it adopts a propaganda on this basis that leads it to adopt a policy of snatching and overstating both false and fake news in a way that serves its agenda. This created absorbed media items to establish a harmful culture. In a nutshell, it creates a victory out of delusions, and a glory out of imagination. It adopts an approach of urging passions, instincts and stimulation of aggressive sentiments towards the West.
Obviously, the editorial policy of Al Jazeera gives priority to what is nationalistic rather than it does to what is Nativist when there is a clash between them. Amid the Arab spring, an intense zealousness was observed by Al Jazeera on supporting the Arab revolutions. That obviously occurred in Tunisia and Egypt, and Al Jazeera supported anti-moderate regime revolutions, that were traditionally opposing “resistance axis”.
As for the Syrian revolution, Al Jazeera was reluctant to support it, since it broke out against a “resistance-axis regime”, but after the Muslim Brotherhood got the upper hand, Al Jazeera became more involved in the Syrian Revolution. Instead, when the situation turned against Muslim Brothers in favor of liberalists and democratic trends, Al Jazeera retreated in favor of the “resistance-axis regime”. Furthermore, when Islamic groups, affiliated to Al-Qaida, appeared to have a crucial role, Al Jazeera soon focused on this role, and when a sectarian terrorist militia affiliated to the “resistance-axis” like Hezbollah invasion of Syria, Al Jazeera took neither care nor concern for fear, the “resistance axis” image could be distorted.
In a word, the Syrian Revolution turned over the calculations of Al Jazeera, and rebuked it. Al Jazeera embarrassedly had no way to be proud of “resistance axis”, as this axis perpetrated so many brutal atrocities, and Al Jazeera had no way to glorify Al-Qaeda because it perpetrated offensives that resulted in consequences and spillovers, Al Jazeera could not justify, especially “the Islamic State in Iraq and Sham” ” or what it is called “Daesh”, represented the stereotyped faction of Al-Qaida that targeted Syrian rebels.
Al Jazeera’s media network is practicing a strange kind of secretiveness. This metaphoric description, so to speak, is used to clarify the Al Jazeera aspects, and to make it easier to comprehend its concealed aspect.
The explicity in Al Jazeera
The Al Jazeera Channel originally started broadcasting on November 1st 1996 after BBC Arabic, established in partnership with Saudi Arabia, had been closed in April of the same year. Personnel in charge of the network adopted an oriental logo, represented by an ornamented name written in Diwani old-fashioned Arabic calligraphy in an analogously embellished manner.
Here are some of the main aspects of Al Jazeera channel announced for the public:
Al Jazeera popularity aspect: personnel in charge of the channel were keen on the popularity aspect, to an extent there was a sort of exaggerated popularity, that is obviously manifested in documentary programs that shed light on the sufferings of popular slices in several places in the Islamic World, and the customs and cultures of these slices like the documentary on miserable acclimatized people who adapted their lives to AIDS in Djibouti.
Through such documentaries, Al Jazeera Network tends to make people absorb it rather than they absorb the event by dealing with social slices as broad as possible, to the extent that viewers will feel as if they were celebrated guests, and there will be a media item viewed by millions one day. viewers will cling to the channel in a way the channel will easily implant its vision and agenda in their minds, so it assumed the motto of the so-called “Al Jazeera is a forum for those who have no forum”.
Al Jazeera adopts an excessive media style in a way officers in charge of the channel do not give opportunity for viewers to express their satisfaction with the channel. Instead, these officers dedicate themselves to praise their channel in a banally bare way through over-celebrations regarding the anniversary of the broadcast release and by innovation of glittering titles for these celebrations like “renewably originated route” during the twentieth anniversary, and “sun that will never sets” which was innovated during the twenty first anniversary.
Many other media storms that were launched on the seventeenth anniversary of establishing its website. On the twentieth anniversary of Al Jazeera establishment, it launched a campaign entitled “We are Al Jazeera” that involved, according to the channel vision, a series of initiatives that aim at encouraging multiple debates, and to enhance respect values towards other different visions.
However, the initiative obviously included TV episodes displaying stories of some personnel who contributed to the popularization of the channel like Muhamad Kreishan, Fieruz Zayyani, Khadija Bin Ganna and Jamal Rayyan and others. Through those TV presenters were neither presenters of the news item nor commentators on guest’s attitudes. Rather, they turned into guests that had to reply all queries and questions aroused in viewers’ minds. Viewers would be assumedly introduced to the other visions of personnel who had starred as prominent figures.
Polishing of certain elites, Al Jazeera Channel has succeeded in displaying certain personnel who were adopting specific thoughts and cultures, and the channel was keen on showing them as if thoughts and knowledge were confined exclusively to them. That was done in a way that so many viewers strongly believed in those guests, who were called permanent or resident guests, were torches of guidance and minarets of the righteous path. Those personnel were members of Muslim Brothers during early 1960s and 1970s, nativists and communists, who were opposing the prevailing regimes. Al Jazeera Network made them the utmost minarets for Arab viewers, especially through the channel debate programs like “opinion and the opposite one” program and “more opinions” program.
Al Jazeera Network went far beyond polishing resident guests who were looked upon a “Al Jazeera household”. It underestimated other figures of intellect and thought, and drowned them with many accusations and suspects. It also attacked many high-ranked political figures who were not accordant with its approach and vision in a way that made those figures become problematic and abhorred by a board slice of viewers. However, as Arab viewers trust Al Jazeera’s household elite, they will deem it as the only credible reference from whom they will absorb ideas, views, relationships and reactive conducts. So, viewers will have a destructive education like “hatred education”, “building up over the ruins of others”, and “violence education”.
Moreover, it is very important to remind that Al Jazeera Network promotes certain individuals, inventing celebrity attitude for them in the Arab World. Those polished figures have been bargained for a strong defense of Qatari policies in exchange for fame they have achieved by ads and advocation propaganda.
They had to do favor back: Since Qatar is incubating these personnel, they appear overstatedly more pro-Qatari than Qataris themselves. One example of those personnel is a Mauritanian Brother and a political activist called “Muhamad Al-Mukhtar Al-Shanqiti”. Anyway, the Qatari media campaign that was launched just after the unprecedent political and diplomatic breakout that had increased the isolation of Qatar on both Gulf and Arab levels. That was due to the fact that Al Jazeera and Qatar had been working on undermining the Arab national security, and disseminating chaos and disrupting stability through supporting and funding radical organizations and terrorist groups in the Middle East and North Africa.
Copyright © 2018 The Middle East and North Africa Media Monitor.