The best coverage of protests in Egypt

Hands down, the best coverage of the crisis in Egypt is coming from Al Jazeera English (AJE).

I was originally introduced to the news source by an American friend — a conservative Republican and military veteran who has lived and worked in the Middle East for years. “It’s the best news channel in the world,” he said. When I started watching, I was surprised by the quality and breadth of the news. I grew up in Canada, so I’m used to news that is not specifically focused on the United States, and continue to think that people benefit from different national perspectives.

According to an article in Salon, about 120 million homes across the Middle East and Europe tune in to AJE every day, but the news source has been unable to find a home here. Not one major cable or satellite network in this country will carry it, although there are a couple of exceptions:

Unless you live in Burlington, Vt., or Northeast Ohio, where two local cable networks defied the industry by adding the channel to their line-ups, the only way to see the channel’s programming is on YouTube, or by paying for either a subscription broadband service or a satellite dish from French company GlobeCast.

Media professionals have left CNN and the BBC to work for the Doha-based channel, but many American leaders continue the narrative that Al Jazeera is an outlet for terrorists. It doesn’t help that most people confuse Al Jazeera English with Al Jazeera Arabic — while the two channels are owned by the same company, they are operated independently and are quite different. While Al Jazeera English reports from a Middle East perspective, it’s an international news source dedicated to quality journalism. It has knowledge and access to many parts of the world — well beyond the Middle East — that no one else has. 

The Egyptian government just announced over the weekend that it was closing AJE’s Cairo bureau and revoking its license to broadcast from the country. The network has found ways to continue its coverage, but maybe that will improve its reputation in the United States. At the very least, a lot of Americans are now getting introduced to this fantastic news channel from its streaming coverage of the current crisis. 

Zoe Romanowsky

By

Zoe Romanowsky is writer, consultant, and coach. Her articles have appeared in "Catholic Digest," "Faith & Family," "National Catholic Register," "Our Sunday Visitor," "Urbanite," "Baltimore Eats," and Godspy.com. Zo

Crisis Magazine Comments Policy

This is a Catholic forum. As such:

  1. All comments must directly address the article. “I tell you, on the day of judgment men will render account for every careless word they utter.” (Matthew 12:36)
  2. No profanity, ad hominems, hot tempers, or racial or religious invectives. “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32)
  3. We will not tolerate heresy, calumny, or attacks upon our Holy Mother Church or Holy Father. “And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it.” (Matthew 16:18)
  4. Keep it brief. No lengthy rants or block quotes. “For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.” (James 4:14)
  5. If you see a comment that doesn’t meet our standards, please flag it so a moderator may remove it. “Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness.” (Galatians 6:1)
  6. All comments may be removed at the moderators’ discretion. “But of that day and hour no one knows…” (Matthew 24:36)
  7. Crisis isn’t responsible for the content of the comments box. Comments do not represent the views of Crisis magazine, its editors, authors, or publishers. “Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God… So each of us shall give account of himself to God.” (Romans 14:10, 12)
MENU