No. 9, Fall/Winter2002
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Covering Al-Qa'ida, Covering Saddam. In the summer of 2002, Al-Qa'ida chose Yosri Fouda, Al Jazeera's London bureau chief, for a unique interview with two of its most wanted leaders and gave him the first direct admission intended for public eyes and ears that, yes, they really did do it. He talked about that and his subsequent visit to Baghdad with S. Abdallah Schleifer.


Yosri Fouda

Chris Cramer, CEO of CNNI, asks NewsXchange Ljubljana conference participants "Did Our World Really
Change After September 11?"

Chris Cramer
Chris RossAn Interview with Chris Ross Special Coordinator for Public Diplomacy. Sarah J. Sullivan spoke to Ambassador Ross in Washington DC about the US government's attempts to send a message to the Muslim world.

"13 Months After the 9-11 Attacks-Terrorism, Patriotism, And Media Coverage":
at The NewsXchange in Ljubljana top broadcast journalists discussed 9-11's impact on journalism. TBS publishes NewsXchange's transcript.

"Why Do We Hate Them?" - Arab satellite coverage of 9-11's first anniversary helped articulate the region's response to "Why Do They Hate Us?" Humphrey Davies watched for three days.

NewsXchange, Ljubljana

CNN Pentagon correspondent Jim Miklaszewski participating via satellite at NewsXchange Ljubljana.
MBC: On The Move
Once London-based, the Middle East Broadcasting Center is now firmly ensconced in Dubai. S. Abdallah Schleifer visited, spoke with Director General Ali Al-Hedeithy and Head of News Salah Negm, and soaked up the atmosphere.
Ali Al-Hedeithy  
MBC, Dubai
New MBC: The Marriage of Elegant Professionalism and Emirati Glitter: MBC's new look entrances S. Abdallah Schleifer.
Interview with Ali Al-Hedeithy, MBC Director General
Salah Negm
Interview with Salah Negm, MBC Head of News
Orbit Television and Radio Network:

TBS interviewed Orbit's CEO, and got briefed on "a new interactive era."

OrbitInterview with Orbit CEO Samir Abdulhadi

Orbit Announces New Channels and Services by Hamid Ouddane

"Arab Satellite Broadcasting in the Age of Globalization":

Papers from the Cambridge conference.

CMEIS conference

Jasim Al-Azzawi, Jon Alterman, and Faisal Al-Kasem at the CMEIS conference.

Nineteen Mass Communication scholars and leading Arab professional broadcasters gathered for three days in Cambridge, UK, to consider the issue of "Furthering Integration and Enhancing Fragmentation in the Arab World." The conference was sponsored by the Center of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies (CMEIS) and convened by CMEIS fellow Khalid Hroub. The four papers reproduced here are provisional versions; final versions of the proceedings will be published in full in book form.

The Effects of Satellite Television on Arab Domestic Politics by Jon B. Alterman

The Impact of Arab Satellite Television on Culture and Value Systems in Arab Countries: Perspectives and Issues by Muhammad L. Ayish

Should We Talk To The Enemy? by Jasim Al-Azzawi

Arab Satellite Channels Between State and Private Ownership: Current and Future Implications by Naomi Sakr

Channel News:

ANN, one of the region's smaller channels, struggles with financial and political issues. Noha El-Hennawy reports.

No stranger to controversy, Al Jazeera riles rulers once again. Assya Y. Ahmed listens to "the opinion…and the other opinion."

Egypt's El Mehwar is one of a new crop of privately-owned stations. However, finding that special niche is not easy, even if you know what you want to say, as Naila Hamdy reports.

The court-ordered closure of Lebanon's Murr TV calls the country's reputation for press freedom into question. Assya Y. Ahmed traces the web of politics, religion, and money.

Zen TV has quietly sought out the Arab world's most forgotten audience—youth under 25. But can its version of the modern Arab win the day? Hassan M. Fattah reports from Beirut.

Super News Center Setting Up in London for LBC and Al-Hayat: An Interview with Jihad Khazen and Salah Nemett by S. Abdallah Schleifer.

New Guys on the Block: Al-Majd 2 and Khalifa TV by the TBS editors.

Issues and Developments:

AUSACE 2002.

Jihad Fakhreddine
Jihad Fakhreddine of PARC.

Cairo International Film Festival
Cairo International Film Festival.


Paola Caridi and Emanuele Giordana explore the impact of satellite TV on Arab immigrants in Italy in "A Smaller Mediterranean? Satellite TV Channels and the Arab Community in Italy."

Is there such a thing as "contextual objectivity"? Mohammed El-Nawawy and Adel Iskandar explore the issue of Al Jazeera's war coverage.

AUSACE's 2002 Beirut Conference examined "The Role of Media in Defining Arab Culture." Naila Hamdy attended.

Can Egypt's private commercial TV channels make it in the regional arena? Jihad Fakhreddine charts the obstacles.

A disastrous summer for ART/ADD, no-one knows how many subscribers there are, and yet more free-to-air stations join the fray -all in a market that "isn't worth the bother." Chris Forrester finds that the world of Middle East TV continues to "Baffle and Bewilder."

Peter Einstein, Showtime President and Chief Executive, moderated a panel on "The Digital Dilemma: Television And Technology In Emerging Markets" at the MIT Arab Alumni Association's Beirut conference. TBS provides the transcript of his opening remarks.

Television is experiencing major advances in the services offered to customers. Will the Middle East's viewers be tempted to go On-Demand And Interactive? Hala Abdulrahman questions industry leaders about TV's "Fifth Generation."

Cairo's 2002 International Film Festival showed a wide awareness among filmmakers of the importance of satellite TV. Janet Fine reports.

Stop Press:

The following stories appeared too soon before TBS's deadline to allow reporting. TBS considered them important enough to quote direct from the press.

Protocols, Politics and Palestine (Al-Ahram Weekly)

Dream's Wake-up Call? (Al-Ahram Weekly)

Al Jazeera Dealt New Blow By Kuwait (News World)

Jordan Releases Al Jazeera Journalists (News World)

"Transnational Broadcast Services and Their Impact on the Peace Process in the Middle East" by Hussein Y. Amin.

"A New Order Of Information In The Arab Broadcasting System" by Tourya Guaaybess.


From the Editors

The Far Side of the Satellite
TBS launches a new department, which will offer space to musings outside the main stream on the broader implications of satellite TV. S. Abdallah Schleifer inaugurates the department with thoughts on spiritual grace, the disappearance of the scribal tradition in the Arab-Islamic world, and loudspeakers.

Edited by Amos Owen Thomas. TBS is seeking reviewers for upcoming issues. Please see the reviewer guidelines for more information.


Copyright 2002 Transnational Broadcasting Studies
TBS is published by the Adham Center for Television Journalism, the American University in Cairo