It seems that, unfortunately, Al Jazeera might be finally bullied into submission. After Colin Powell met Qatar's foreign minister (and obviously a bit of behind the scenes arm-twisting), Al Jazeera might have to change. The American state department spokesman says that the Qataris need to "professionalize the station." What, may I ask, does that mean? I can understand if Al Jazeera has been publishing falsehoods, such as reporting killings did not occur, but it seems the main problem is that it is too gruesome and bloody and too Anti-American and too Anti-Israeli. Does this sound hypocratical, cynical, and darkly comedic to anyone but me? War is gruesome and bloody, deal with it. On this point, I'd have to side with Al Jazeera. They give a side of war, and an extremely important one at that, that other news channels such as CNN or BBC fail to deliver. What has always been the one unmistakable result of wars time and time again? Death and bloodshed. If this side is never shown, how can a station proclaim to be unbiased and professional. It seems that people like to enjoy the fireworkds, to see the amazing and eye catching light effects of "Shock and Awe", without seeing the destruction it causes. In fact, I would say that most people think that these images of bloodshed and violence, however horrific, should be shown, as is seen from the reaction of most people agreeing to the publishing of the pictures of Iraqi prisoners being tortured.
As to being Anti-American and Anti-Israeli, Al Jazeera has never claimed to be the holier-than-thou, objective, broadcasting station. It aims to take a point of view, and that point of view is of the Arab street, which definitely is more hostil to America than other viewpoints such as the BBC and CNN. What are we going to see next, Fox news being banned because it is pro-Israeli and anti-Arab? Are we going to see every journalist in TV and newspapers barred because he writes a story critical of America? The funny thing is, Al Jazeera is regarded by Arabic governments as being pro-Zionists, as not so far in the distant past it was banned in Bahrain on the pretext of being "pro-Zionist". I think Al Jazeera can rightfully take pride in that two opposing sides, Arabic regimes and the American Cabinet, criticise it for catering more to the other viewpoint. That, I think, confirms its slogan of "Opinion... and the other opinion."