Yesterday I got a press release from al-Hurra announcing the guest of the upcoming episode of Robert Satloff's "Inside Washington", complete with a transcript of the program. That's good - as long as I've been writing about the absence of transparency at the station, as best as I can recall this is the first transcript of any kind I've ever been offered by al-Hurra. On the other hand, the featured guest was... John Bolton. Bolton, of course, is particularly disliked in the Arab world, and his complaints about anti-American bias at the UN will repel more Arab viewers than it could hope to impress. But the Wall Street Journal loves him... and of course that's the only audience which really matters for al-Hurra anymore.
I did notice, thanks to Kim Elliott, that a House Report has recommended an appropriation of $2.2 million to fund streaming video for al-Hurra and a 60 day archive of all their programs, as well as another $2 million for the random translation of 20 hours a week of its content to be posted on the al-Hurra website. This sort of initiative was exactly the one good thing which I could see coming out of the al-Hurra trainwreck, and I hope it goes forward. That's the only way to allow analysts on all sides of the spectrum to have access to the information they need to form judgements about the station's content - which might not be exactly what Ken Tomlinson and friends really wanted, at the end of the day.