Many Muslims are talking about US and Israel underhand propaganda by planting agents and intemidating rulers and broadcasters of Muslim owned mass media like AlJazeera. But while we are on the subject of media and going by the saying forewarned is forearmed, I’d like to point out two of the most effective US Weapons of Mass Manipulation currently used in the Arab world.
It’s called Radio Sawa and Al-Hurra.
But what’s so sad and sinister about these stations?
Unlike Al-Jazeera and other big TV channels in Arabic speaking countries, in the case of these two, you find they have openly stated they are operating to manipulate Arabic speaking Muslims into their way of thinking. The sad thing is they are succeeding in their efforts some extent! Below are some points and stats you might like to consider; (I got the below info from wikipedia as well as several other US and Arab websites. Take them with a pinch of salt)
* A US Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) commissioned poll in February 2011 found that 25% of Egyptians living in Cairo and Alexandria tuned in to Alhurra TV during the protests in that country in January 2011, surpassing al-Jazeera’s 22% viewership during the same period!
* A 2005 Ipsos poll found that just 14% of Iraqi respondents tuned in to Alhurra (ranking 11th place). However, a 2008 Ipsos poll of Iraqi viewers found the network’s popularity had increased to 18%, overtaking Al-Jazeera (15%)!
(This improvement could be due to Alhurra’s launch of Alhurra-Iraq, an Iraq-focused channel with programming tailored especially to the Iraqi audience.)
All good. Nice figures but what is AlHurra TV?
* Alhurra TV is a fully US owned and operated Arabic-language satellite TV channel funded by the U.S. Congress that broadcasts news and current affairs programming to audiences in the Middle East and North Africa.
* Alhurra which began in, 2004 to broadcast to 22 Arab countries across the Middle East and North Africa.
* According to wikipedia like all forms of U.S. public diplomacy, the station is forbidden from broadcasting within the United States under the 1948 Smith-Mundt Act! (external consumption only.)
Now lets see what Radio Sawa is doing shall we?
Unlike the above figures and stats I couldn’t find uptodate infomation about Radio sawa. However here are some things you might find interesting..
* The station is a service of the US Middle East Broadcasting Networks, Inc. and is publicly funded by the US Broadcasting Board of Governors and the U.S. Congress.
* The station’s goal is to promote pro-American attitudes to youth in the Arab World. In other word’s through Radio Sawa, the United States seeks to effectively & directly communicate with the youthful population (between 18 & 3) of Arabic-speakers in the Middle East without having to plant “people, favorable news items, analyts etc.” in Arab station like Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya etc..
* Radio Sawa has Music more than 75% of the air time aimed at the Arab youth. And its “news” segments are clearly tailored to expose youth to only one discourse of hundreds of available discourses. (that is the US discourse and point of views on news) Certainly no Arab nationalist views or any positive news about how Arabs and Muslims take charge of their own affairs. Instead much is devoted to the quisling vassal governments that are “friendly” (to US Corporate interests).
So think again what you watch on your big tv screens. You can become what you see and hear every time. Even the air we breath is polluted with air-waves of propaganda, deception and subterfuge.