Accuracy in Media

While the lawsuit over the sale of Al Gore’s Current TV to Al Jazeera is making headlines, a close reading of the legal complaint provides additional evidence that a congressional investigation into the curious transaction is urgently needed and necessary.

The media executive who claims to have arranged the sale says the idea was to make the Terror TV channel “palatable to U.S. lawmakers,” a formulation that suggests foreign lobbying on Capitol Hill in order to protect the $500 million payoff to Gore and other owners and investors in Current TV.

The suit says that media executive John Terenzio also proposed smoothing things over with “pro-Israel factions, cable operators and, most importantly, the American public.”

The other controversial aspect of the deal, as noted by Fox News contributor Lisa Daftari, is that “Al Jazeera America” has announced plans for bureaus in eight cities, including Detroit, Michigan, and that “Detroit, Michigan is a large ex-pat community of Muslim-Americans where [Jihadist] sleeper cells have been detected.”

Detroit has been called the Arab capital of North America.

Because of the danger of inciting Arabs and Muslims into anti-American violence, Accuracy in Media has called on the House Homeland Security Committee, under the chairmanship of Texas Republican Michael McCaul, to investigate the sale and look at the evidence that the channel is a foreign terrorist entity that can be outlawed on U.S. soil. He has refused to do so.

The Al Gore lawsuit constitutes another reason why Congress has to investigate. If Al Gore had paid Terenzio for his services, as the suit alleges, it is likely that the nature of the deal and the private discussions that went into it would never have been made public. Now, however, all of this is on the public record and more damaging details, if Gore doesn’t settle the lawsuit, will almost certainly come out.   

The revelations demonstrate how sensitive the deal was in the first place. Terenzio says one of his objectives was to develop “strategies to overcome Al Jazeera’s negative image and make Al Jazeera acceptable to American viewers.” Many members of the public associate Al Jazeera with the videos of Osama bin Laden, the architect of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on America. Al Jazeera aired those videos, as well as interviews with bin Laden and other al-Qaeda leaders, and is today still regarded as the voice of the pro-terrorist Muslim Brotherhood.

In short, the plan was for a massive propaganda campaign to play down the channel’s ties to al Qaeda and other terrorist groups, and its financing by the pro-Jihadist Arab government of Qatar.

Terenzio says he came up with “Al Jazeera America,” a name obviously designed to mask the foreign and Arab nature of the propaganda channel.

The revelations in the suit follow reports that the new channel has been feverishly hiring expensive K Street lobbying firms to stop Congress from investigating the deal, and is hiring dozens of American journalists.

Terenzio says in his lawsuit that he “created a sophisticated PowerPoint presentation” describing the deal and that the structure was “based in large measure on the strategies developed by Terenzio in adapting CCTV [China Central television] for American distribution.”

CCTV is the Communist-government funded Chinese state TV channel that has also penetrated the U.S. media market, although in a more limited manner than Al Jazeera.

It appears that Terenzio is an acknowledged expert at getting media access for foreign propaganda channels. His background is quite impressive, as reflected in his official biography. A graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, he is described as “a visiting lecturer at the Syracuse University Newhouse School of Public Communications graduate program in Los Angeles, and at the Tsinghua University School of Journalism in Beijing.”

In the case of Current TV, his idea was to get Al Jazeera into 40-50 million homes through the acquisition of an existing cable channel, Current TV, an unprecedented development that Terenzio maintains he was not compensated for. It is because of this media coup and the failure of Al Gore and the other owners and investors to pay him for his services that Terenzio has launched his lawsuit demanding at least $5 million in damages.

While the suit proceeds in the courts, the legal questions about the deal provide another opportunity for Congress to exercise oversight and investigate the curious transaction. But the fact that prominent Democrats are involved makes it politically sensitive for Republicans who want to avoid confrontations.

The suit says Terenzio made his presentation to Richard Blum, husband of Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, and an investor in Current TV. The suit says that Blum and others involved in Current TV were “concerned about the prospect of losing their shirts” and wanted to find a buyer for their little-watched channel.

The suit says that it was believed that Al Gore would find a sale to Al Jazeera “politically unappealing” but that Blum promised to present it to him.  

“Plaintiffs are informed and believe that Gore was adamant in his rejection of the proposal to sell his liberal environmentally friendly network to the oil rich Qataris who owned Al Jazeera,” it says.

Al Gore apparently changed his mind. Perhaps the $500 million price tag, with $100 million going to him personally, was a factor.

When the sale was announced, Terenzio says he was caught off-guard and that he had not been informed in advance about it, even though he devised the sale and conceived the name “Al Jazeera America.” He says Current TV “insiders” concede his role in the transaction.

Jerry Kenney, a critic of Al Jazeera, says, “I have requested a copy of that PowerPoint presentation from his lawyer. I would love to see his game plan of how to make propaganda from a country that denies free speech to its own citizens and possibly provides material support to terrorists, ‘palatable’ to Congress and the American public.”

Kenney says Congress should request a copy of this PowerPoint as well.

The new developments add impetus to the effort by Rep. Tim Murphy for answers as to what the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) did or did not do regarding the deal. 

  • Please urge Rep. Murphy to accelerate his investigation of the Al Jazeera deal by calling his office at 202-225-2301. Also, it is long overdue for Rep. Michael McCaul to do his duty and announce hearings into this curious transaction. His Committee on Homeland Security can be reached at 202-226-8417.

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  • Show Low Yaqui

    Thank you, Mr. Kincaid for this important and timely piece. This information needs to be widely distributed and known by all U.S. citizens. I only hope the mentioned reps do their job, as well.

  • DrDean0

    Algore is interested in two things only. His number one concern is Money ant the power derived from having it. His other concern is propelling the socialist agenda.

  • Dr_Albert_Gortenbull

    Gore’s Global Warming policies have lead to the suffering and death of millions around the world. To pay for his misdeeds, Gore belongs in the Super-Max federal penitentiary in Colorado where he could check the annual level of snow-cover on the Rockies. Albert

  • Al Gore has always been about the money. He has promoted “global warming” because he owns huge stakes in the three largest carbon trading companies in the world. Selling out ot Al Jazeera is merely part and parcel of his push to amass huge wealth.

    The real issue here is having yet another propaganda network operating in the US. CCTV (China), MSNBC/NBC/ABC/CBS (US Democratic Party outlets)…are all propaganda arms of various entities…none of which are operating for good in America…Al Jazeera, however, is actively seeking to not just destroy American power (as is Barack Obama and the Socialist Democratic Party USA), but is seeking to destroy our way of life…and therein lies the rub.

    Congress needs to block this sale for the simple fact that AL Jazeera supports terrorism against the west generally, and against America in particular.

  • robbins_mitchell

    anAL GOREtentive

  • sjccoach

    This shows how corrupt Al Gore is.

  • Who of us could ever forget seeing those Arabs in Detroit riding around and blowing their horns on 9-11? Their celebrations were an additionaly injury to us. They have the freedom to do this while some man in California made an obscure video insulting Mohhamed is rotting in jail today. Go figure. I am beyond befuddled.

  • Roguewave

    “There is no ‘controlling legal authority’ to demand an investigation.” Al Gore

  • “In the case of Current TV, his idea was to get Al Jazeera into 40-50 million homes through the acquisition of an existing cable channel, Current TV, an unprecedented development that Terenzio maintains he was not compensated for. ”

    About three people watch that channel now, how were they going to get to those numbers when the dust settled? I call BS.

  • ArmyAviator

    Algore is a dedicated Liberal Socialist ideologue, as well as a member of the Liberal Socialist ELITE. Accordingly, he’s entitled to his 29000 SF mansion, private jets and cuddling with our enemies. Algore is a NATIONAL DISGRACE and the media should take his pants down and spank him! But, they won’t. He’s a Liberal ICON, up there with the Kennedy’s, Clinton’s, Kerry’s and the 0bama’s. Algore may come-off like some moron and inbred idiot, but he soaked the Arabs for Half a Billion over the Current TV scam.

  • joe

    Cliff, Who were the original investors in “Current TV” besides Mr. DiFi? Sounds like a Solundra style buyout.

  • As usual, “follow the money”. The “holier than thou” liberal jackels start double-crossing each other when dividing up the loot & than call us “evil” for exposing their hypocrisy!

  • boysenberry

    He is not ELITE, he is CROOK.

  • $2927880

    But the fat pig cant take it with him.

  • crustywalt

    Anything broadcast on this new channel is already accessible to people through the internet. Gore’s network was tanking badly and I’m sure bleeding money. This is a no brainer on the seller’s part. Look on the bright side – it will be a channel that has to be ordered by the subscriber, unlike the internet version, so locations that get the feed will be easily tracked. It’s not that he sold this or who bought it that’s important. It’s whether it was done above board and not tampered with.

  • You don’t seem to get it. There will be no congressional investigation regardless of the outcome of the civil trial, if it ever gets that far. Between the liberals and the press craving members of the Stupid Party it will never be mentioned. Sure, you’ll see this on a bunch of internet blogs, Fox (neocon) News, and maybe the Washington times but the NBCABCCBSPBSNewYorkTimesLATimesSFChronicleNewRepublicSlateEtc conglomerate which supplies information to the “under-informed voters”; the amorphous pile of protoplasm that now picks our presidents and the majority of our elected officials? That massive outlet of information will never breath a word of it. Get it through your heads that facts don’t matter any more. You need to rethink your paradigm for the future and what your actions are going to be.

  • Roberto Enrique Benitez

    A very telling sentence is, “But the fact that prominent Democrats
    are involved makes it politically sensitive for Republicans who want to
    avoid confrontation.” That is the problem with the GOP and why it’s becoming irrelevant. It’s unwilling to confront those who would destroy the Republic.They’re afraid of being called McCarthyites despite the fact that Sen. McCarthy was right.

  • BeaversBrother

    Algore: isn’t he the one who invented the internet and masseuses?