Last week, the US House of Representatives passed legislation labeling Middle East satellite carriers that knowingly contract with Specially Designated Global Terrorists – such as Hezbollah’s al-Manar TV station and the Syrian-based al-Zawra – as terrorist entities themselves. Should the bill become law, such satellite providers will face sanctions.
According to the bill, terrorist TV stations “broadcast incitement to violence,” aiding terrorist organizations in “recruitment, fundraising, and propaganda.” Indeed, al-Manar uses music videos, interviews, and slanted reporting to promote “resistance” and inspire suicide missions. Similarly, al-Zawra, established by the Islamic Army of Iraq, is “insurgent propaganda, 24/7.” The channel features songs about the “U.S. occupiers,” and is rife with images of dead women and children, and insurgents firing at American soldiers.
As Mark Dubowitz noted in the fall 2008 issue of inFOCUS, “strong diplomatic pressure must be applied” to the Arab satellite companies that showcase these channels in Egypt and Saudi Arabia. It appears that Congress may heed his calls.