[Updated 20 Nov '06]
(Have added links related to AJI):
. Al-Jazeera was launched 15 Nov 2005 at 1200 hrs GMT - the main wesbite has been revamped and there is a live stream available - it's much better than the usual mainstream news channels but it seems to be a diluted form of what most people were expecting - a major news item was the "Darfur Crisis" without going into the power game being played there by the major world powers and they kept calling it the "seperation barrier", not "the wall" as any fair and balanced individual would call it.....
. Voohoo!! Aljazeera English is scheduled to start from 15 Nov 2006, two ads on their test video broadcast have been running for a few months - thanks Faz
. News related to Al-Jazeera International
. Control Room - documentary on the channel, the one that introduced John Rushing (more on him below)
. AJI may not be the independent news channel it touts and we want it to be - link
. Friends of AJI - Blog related to AJI news - updated regularly
Al Jazeera, the Arabic language channel is going international. And this time they are pulling put all the stops. They have attracted some of the best known faces in international news from BBC, CNN, ABC and others It is supposed to start in June 2006 and test transmissions have reportedly started in March 2006. It will also offer "simultaneous translations" in Urdu, as a result of which around 500 million people in India and Pakistan will also be able to see and understand the news channel. Al Jazeera International, as it will be called, is based in Malaysia and will have bureaus around the world. Some of the most famous people are listed below:
Sir David Frost is a well known British broadcaster with over 30 years of experience. He is best known for the "Breakfast with Frost" program, broadcast by the BBC. Links to: Profile of Frost on the BBC, and wikipedia - Interview with NYT on why Frost joined Al Jazeera
Stephen Cole is the well-known anchor of BBC's ClickOnline. In Aug 2005, he announced his move to Al-Jazeera as their lead male anchor person. He claimed earlier this year that the show's popularity had made him a star abroad. "When I go abroad, I get mobbed. It's a joke but in Bangalore I can't leave the hotel. Hong Kong and Tokyo are difficult, too." Link to Cole's profile on BBC and wikipedia, - on why he moved to Al Jazeera
John Rushing is a former US Marine Captain who was one of the spokesmen for Centcom during the Iraq war. links to why Rushing moved to Al-Jazeera, radio interview on NPR, personal homepage, Al-Jazeera's global mission, an article about Rushing
Veronica Pedrosa is a well known reporter on CNN. She won the "Best News Anchor" award at the Asian Television Awards in 2004 for her work on CNN International - link to profile on CNN
Rageh Omaar was the face of BBC during the US led invasion of Iraq and became a household name during that period. link to profile and article on Omaar at BBC and UK's Times
Riz Khan was a reporter for CNN during which time he also covered the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Makkah, Saudi Arabia. link to Riz Khan's homepage and an article and on why he decided to move to Al Jazeera (requires subscription), Excerpt: "Former CNN International anchor Riz Khan explains: "Al-Jazeera International provides the ideal vehicle to bridge gaps between communities in the East and West. ... I'm fully aware of the negative image of the Al Jazeera brand in the U.S., especially at the government level, but I think part of that comes from a misunderstanding of the strong cultural position the Arabic-language channel has among the average people of the Middle East. It is extremely popular for being outspoken not only about the West but also about Arab governments.""
David Marash is the well known and well respected co-presenter of Nightline on ABC, the US TV channel. He faced a lot of criticism for the switch since he is also Jewish. link to Marash's profile on ABC and on why he joined Al Jazeera
Barbara Serra is a former reporter with Sky News, Five News, CNN and the BBC. She is of Italian origin and lived most of her early life in Denmark. She is also a former Miss Italy, so that may help attracting many more viewers to her weekend newscast :) - link to wikipedia profile
Shahnaz Pakravan is a journalist who is a prominent figure in Middle Eastern and British media circles through her work with the BBC and ITN, including Arab World Direct and Tomorrow's World. She will be hosting "Everywoman", where "Shahnaz and her team will bring viewers around the world stories that have universal appeal with subjects as diverse and sensitive as religion, society, sex, education and arts, all from women's perspectives." - link to story
Richard Gizbert is a well-known face on ABC News where he is a correspondent in the London bureau since 1993. Since then Gizbert has reported abroad on many of the major international stories such as the conflicts in Iraq and the continuing unrest in the Middle East. Gizbert was dismissed by ABC for refusing to cover the war in Iraq; he fought the dismissal in court and won. link to profile on ABC, link to court story
Felicity Barr, a specialist sports journalist had been working with ITV before moving to AlJazeera - link to ITV profile and wikipedia article
Amanda Palmer, hottie/journalist :), presents the "48" show/programme for AJI. "Through the personal stories of local guides, intrepid reporter Amanda Palmer and the crew have just 48 hours to find the beating heart of their chosen city." Amanda Palmer has worked for CNN, APTV and others. Links to a news item on her announcement to join AJI, her profile on AJI and the programme 48
Meanwhile, suspected Al Jazeera reporters have repeatedly been beaten up by the "Allied forces" in Iraq, Tareq Ayyoub was killed by a missile in 2003 and Taseer Allouni was sentenced in Spain for "collaboration with the 9/11 hijackers" but their news was mostly ignored by the international media. Now with a roster of news stars like these, most news channels will have a hard time hiding the "other side of the story"