My connection with Al Jazeera was that I was managing director of its English channel between 2008 and 2010. But instead of building on the international and award-winning reputation of its existing English channel, which is seen in Canada, Al Jazeera created a stand-alone “American” channel that ultimately cost the government of Qatar upwards of $2 billion.
In doing so, Al Jazeera’s bosses made the ludicrous mistake of trying to convince Americans they were as American themselves as apple pie. They downplayed Al Jazeera’s global perspective, which was often brilliant, balanced and hard-hitting, and instead pretended that it could outdo the American news industry in covering America.
Al Jazeera's "values": Islam/Arabs rock; the U.S. sucks; and Israel sucks most of all.In spite of many examples of strong journalism, it presented an impression to viewers that it was a “wannabe” American news channel that was distancing itself from the hard-hitting, often controversial values of Al Jazeera.
Yup--those are Burman's (and the Toronto Star's) bedrock "values," too.