Monday, January 03, 2011

More Information on the Sudanese Referendum

I have discovered with my Roku internet streamer, much to my utter surprise, that the English version Al Jazeera TV news is one of the best overall newscasts in the world. The only time you hear of it in American news is when its releasing some footage of Osama Bin Laden or something; so, my initial impression of Al Jazeera before I actually starting watching it was that it was some form of Islamicist propaganda TV or something. In some ways, it actually rivals even the BBC World News, which I also listen to on a regular basis. Al Jazeera, it turns out, is actually pretty objective news reporting. Perhaps the Arabic version is not, and the English version is more sanitized for Western audiences, but I can't speak to that. But my commentary on Al Jazeera is neither here nor there for purposes of this post.

What is of importance is their coverage of the Sudanese Referendum vote. There is a treasure trove of information on South Sudan and the Referendum vote on the Al Jazeera website, a topic most other world news reports have not covered either at all or only in passing. Even the BBC has been relatively silent on the whole thing. I highly recommend clicking on the link above. There is a whole page devoted to South Sudan. Again, some of the reports might be slanted a bit as Al Jazeera is certainly pro-Islam, but its a great source of information who who's who, timelines, and the issues involved in the referendum. For the most part, its pretty fair. (I can't vouch for all editorials, but the actual information presented is pretty objective.)

In fact, on the Dec 31st Al Jazeera newscast, there was the following story about 7 minutes into the newscast  that was fascinating (one of many clips and stories they have about it on their website) that captures the angst and seriousness of the referendum vote. Luckily, they had the segment on the website:

And, of course, this is another shameless plug to donate for the bus that Fr. Tim and the Sudanese community are wanting to charter to help the Sudanese community in Sioux Falls get down to the referendum voting site in Omaha. We still need a bit more money. We currently have $570 of the $850 needed. You can donate online via paypal at Fr. Tim's site or send a check directly to Church of the Good Shepherd-Sioux Falls.

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