Fox News analyst Jim Pinkerton suggested on Monday that Al Jazeera’s new American television network might have an editorial policy that was supportive of “killing Americans and so on” because he said that was what most Arabs wanted.
In preparation for Al Jazeera America’s Aug. 20 launch, Fox News host Jon Scott noted during a Monday segment that “some charged” that the network’s Middle East counterpart “gave a voice to terrorists.”
“But what about the editorial side of it?” Scott asked Pinkerton. “I mean, Al Jazeera, many people saw it as a mouthpiece for Osama bin Laden because that was the channel that regularly aired his diatribes right after 9/11.”
“Well, I think there’s something to that,” Pinkerton agreed. “But look, they’re an Arab news channel, and let’s face it, many — if not most — Arabs probably support what bin Laden was trying to do in terms of killing Americans and so on. The polls from the Pew Center certainly show that.”
In fact, a Pew Research poll found that Muslim confidence in bin Laden declined sharply between 2003 and 2011. By that time, only 13 percent of Jordanians and 18 percent of Pakistanis supported the terrorist mastermind.
Pinkerton did admit that he found himself watching Al Jazeera’s coverage of events in the Middle East.
“I’m under no illusion as to their bias, but they spend real money to put real reporters into hot zones and cover them and they do it hours on end. There’s a value to it,” he explained. “I believe in the ‘we report, you decide’ syndrome or philosophies so, therefore, I like to think as I’m watching their footage, I’m thinking, this probably is biased, however, I still want to see it.”
Watch this video from Fox News’ Happening Now, broadcast Aug. 19, 2013.