The protests rocking the Arab world this week have one thread uniting them: Al Jazeera, the Qatar-based channel whose aggressive coverage has helped propel insurgent emotions from one capital to the next. In many ways, it is Al Jazeera's moment - not only because of the role it has played, but also because the channel has helped to shape a narrative of popular rage against oppressive American-backed governments. "The notion that there is a common struggle across the Arab world is something Al Jazeera helped create," said Marc Lynch, a professor at George Washington University.
NYT: Cables show US changed tack on Egypt
Cairo: The New York Times is reporting that cables obtained by WikiLeaks reveal how the United States changed the way it dealt with Egypt after President Barack Obama came to power. It says relations improved between the two allies, with one official writing in a cable that the U.S. avoided "the public confrontations that had become routine" during the Bush administration. In an interview on Thursday, Obama said that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has been "an ally of ours on a lot of critical issues."
Jordanians march to press for reforms
Amman: Thousands of Jordanian opposition men took to the streets Friday in the country's capital demanding the prime minister step down and venting their anger at rising prices, inflation and unemployment. About 3,500 activists from Jordan's main Islamist opposition group, trade unions and leftist organizations gathered in Amman's downtown, waving banners reading: "Send the corrupt guys to court."The crowd denounced Prime Minister Samir Rifai's unpopular policies.