Al Jazeera America signs Soledad O'Brien as special correspondent

Al Jazeera America signs Soledad O'Brien as special correspondent
Soledad OBrien
Soledad OBrien

Remember the story by the satirical website The Daily Currant announcing that 2008 vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin had signed with Al Jazeera America? If you don’t, the Washington Post’s Suzi Parker can refresh your memory. Parker, treating the spoof as factual, wrote a scathing indictment of the “once-upon-a-time darling of Fox News” for accepting a position with a network Fox had excoriated as “an anti-American terror mouthpiece.”

This past week, the rumor mill was active again. This time the scuttlebutt was that Soledad O’Brien, released in February by CNN, was planning to sign on as an Al Jazeera America commentator. This time, however, the rumor turned out to be true. A press release received on July 1 from the network (available here) confirms that “O’Brien will contribute short-form segments as Special Correspondent to Al Jazeera America’s primetime current affairs magazine program ‘America Tonight.’” In addition, her production company, Starfish Media Group, will produce hour-long documentary specials for the network.

Ehab Al Shihabi, executive director of Al Jazeera’s international operations and the senior executive developing the new channel, is quoted as saying:

O’Brien’s career producing and reporting on the human side of many of the most important stories of the past decade will fit in perfectly with what Al Jazeera America will be covering every day. Her dedication to that type of journalism is what makes it so exciting to announce that she and her production company are joining the Al Jazeera America team.

O’Brien herself is quoted as saying, “I look forward to beginning a relationship with Al Jazeera America, which has made a commitment to producing quality programming and pursuing underreported stories.”

It’s hard to confirm or refute her claim since the network won’t hit the airwaves until August 2013, but if history is any indicator her and Al Jazeera’s penchant for grievance-mongering should make the two a perfect fit.

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Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy has written for The Blaze, HotAir, NewsBusters, Weasel Zippers, Conservative Firing Line, RedCounty, and New York’s Daily News. He has one published novel, Hot Rain, (G. P. Putnam’s Sons), and has been a guest on Radio Vice Online with Jim Vicevich, The Alana Burke Show, Smart Life with Dr. Gina, and The George Espenlaub Show.

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