On Thursday, the social media team at Al Jazeera English promoted the controversial network’s hagiographic documentary about 9/11 mastermind and al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden.
— Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) May 31, 2018
The 2011 production, which was released just months after the U.S. raid that killed the Al Qaeda leader, focuses on bin Laden’s life “through the eyes of the people who knew him.”
Al Jazeera’s promotion of bin Laden serves to remind readers of Qatar’s long, shadowy history of pro-terrorist activity.
In the days following the September 11 attacks, the New York Times dispatched the late Fouad Ajami to Qatar to get to the bottom of what was going on with bin Laden’s preferred network. What Ajami found was stunning — the Qataris practically worshipped the al Qaeda leader, turning the Doha headquarters of Al Jazeera into an Osama bin Laden fan zone.
“The channel’s graphics assign him a lead role: there is bin Laden seated on a mat, his submachine gun on his lap; there is bin Laden on horseback in Afghanistan, the brave knight of the Arab world,” Ajami wrote. “A huge, glamorous poster of bin Laden’s silhouette hangs in the background of the main studio set at Al Jazeera’s headquarters in Doha, the capital city of Qatar.”
Bin Laden was just as enchanted with Al Jazeera’s coverage, pointing to the Qatari network as the future for Islamist advocacy.
In his notebook that was recovered by U.S. troops during the raid on bin Laden’s Abbottabad compound, the al Qaeda leader wrote: “Al Jazeera, thank God, carriers the banner of revolutions.”
Fast-forward to present day, and Al Jazeera’s state sponsor still engages in endless amounts of nefarious activity. While Doha claims to be a U.S. ally, the country’s leaders simultaneously continue to provide ideological and financial support to terrorist organizations, such as the Muslim Brotherhood, al Qaeda, the Iranian regime, Hamas, and countless more jihadi outfits.