Zapping with the remote control on different Arab TV stations yesterday would have shown immediately two things.  Al Jazeera is doing an impressive and extensive coverage, having four correspondents on the ground and now also heading this big operation of the humaritarian ship “Dignity”.  One of Al Jazeera correspondents is on the boat, whit his crew (with them there is also Sami Al Hajj, the former Al Jazeera cameram held prisoner in Guantanamo), and this have been extensively documented and advertised by the channel, which is putting lots of efforts on the coverage of the humanitarian side of the crisis. Lots of media analysts and journalists are attacking the channel for his alleged biased coverage in favor of Hamas, and among the most critical people there is also Fatah (to be honest, they were always very much against Al Jazeera, even during Arafat’s time). True, Al Jazeera is giving lots of  TV space to the demonstrations happening across the Arab world, and of course all its live coverage coming from its correspondents is very critical of the Israeli attack. How do you expect otherwise when you are living in a place which is undergoing this situation?It is an old critic moved to Al Jazeera, to which many scholars have already responded by speaking about “contextual objectivity” suggesting to use this concept instead that the one of “impartiality” (and not only for Al Jazeera, actually). But the point is that Al Jazeera, as reminded by The Guardian yesterday, is also giving room for the Israeli counterpart, and it has interviewed Israel’s foreign minister Tipzi Livni despite her accusing the channel to be biased against her country. When it comes to its editorial policy of  “the opinion and counter opinion” (the channel motto) Al Jazeera is always very careful not to loose this original touch that is the very key of its success being at the same time the source of all the attacks and critics to the station. Then, if the space given to the Israelis is not so “sexy” and appealing as the space given to the coverage of the Palestinian side, this is another story, but it’s not so difficult to tell the reasons why. Some coverage was also devoted to the minority of Israelis that are demonstrating against the attacks on Gaza, against their own government. We can’t say the same when it comes to the Arab state TV channels, many of them being engaged in proving how much the “Arab street” is demonstrating but hiding many other important sides of this complex regional situation brought up by the last days attacks.


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