Al-Jazeera Introduces 'Lighter Side Of The News' Segment

Top Headlines


ISIS Starting To Worry New Recruit Huge Psycho

RAQQA, SYRIA—Admitting that the recently arrived jihadist’s disturbing behavior was becoming a serious cause for concern, several ISIS members told reporters Friday they were starting to worry that new recruit Said Hassad was a huge psycho.

National Security Experts: ‘ISIS Are Fucking Assholes’

WASHINGTON—Updating the public about the deadly attacks carried out in Brussels yesterday by members of the Syria-based jihadist group, national security experts held a press conference in Washington this morning to notify Americans that ISIS are fucking assholes.

World Makes Final Attempt To Try To Understand This Shit

BRUSSELS—In the wake of the terrorist attacks in Brussels that left over 30 dead and more than 100 injured, an angry and frustrated global populace collectively announced Tuesday that it would make one last attempt to try to understand this shit.

A Timeline Of U.S.–Cuba Relations

As President Obama visits Cuba in an effort to restore diplomatic ties with the U.S., The Onion looks at pivotal moments in the tension-filled history of U.S.–Cuba relations.

Vatican City Residents Rally To Save St. Peter’s Basilica From Development

VATICAN CITY—Citing its historical significance and the valuable role it plays in the community, residents of Vatican City rallied this week to save St. Peter’s Basilica from being demolished as part of a development project that would convert the site into an expansive residential and retail complex, sources reported.

Saudi Authorities Decry Wasteful 3-Hour Death-Row Appeals Process

RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA—Criticizing the amount of time and money wasted between a condemned individual’s sentencing and eventual execution, Saudi government officials expressed frustration Monday over the country’s costly three-hour appeals process for convicts facing the death penalty.
End Of Section
  • More News
Up Next

Al-Jazeera Introduces 'Lighter Side Of The News' Segment

DOHA, QATAR—With the stated intent of "turning current-events coverage on its head," the popular but oft-criticized Al-Jazeera Arab television news network launched its "Lighter Side Of The News" segment Monday.

Jalami reports on a badly bungled bombing.

"And now, we have something a little different for you," anchor Jihan Jalami said, turning from coverage of violence in Najaf.

"It seems a certain suicide bomber paid the price for his sloppy job Sunday, when he failed to annihilate a Jerusalem pizza parlor, and himself along with it. After numerous attempts to detonate the homemade device hidden under his shirt, the bomber gave up and ordered lunch! Can you imagine the relieved look on that restaurant owner's face?!"

Continued Jalami: "The blundering bomber was well into his third slice of pizza when responding Mossad agents killed him and wounded two bystanders in a hail of gunfire."

Al-Jazeera then resumed normal coverage, airing hard-line Islamic cleric Abdul Rashid Ghazi's statement in response to air strikes on Afghanistan.

The Lighter Side, airing at the bottom of the hour during non-peak times, is already popular among viewers. Favorite segments so far include the story of a Ramallah teen who sat motionless in a freshly plowed pepper field for 10 days, believing himself to be in a minefield; that of a U.N.-sponsored airborne food-drop that leveled an entire Afghan village; and that of a large fig, produced on a farm outside Bahrain, which bears an uncanny resemblance to renegade Muslim cleric Muqtada Al-Sadr.

"I could not believe what I was seeing," Osiraq resident Akil Hamza said. "The fig looked just like him."

Al-Jazeera, a technologically savvy news organization that reports events in the Middle East from an Arab perspective, remains the only foreign station allowed in Afghanistan.

Station executives say the Lighter Side segments will help them broaden their audience.

"We have long been aware that our network isn't as well-regarded in the West as news outlets such as CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News," said Wadah Khanfar, managing director of Al-Jazeera. "We were criticized for airing certain stories—the capture of U.S. soldiers by al-Qaeda, for instance, or the burning of the American embassy in Afghanistan. So we looked to see what sort of stories our American news counterparts were running in lieu of unpopular topical pieces."

Footage from Lighter Side segments titled "Time To Get A New House!" (left) and "Even Amputees Want To Kick The U.S. Troops Out!"

"This is what we came up with," Khanfar said, gesturing to a row of monitors displaying the humorous action at the State Fair of Jalalabad, where several residents who had lost their arms in the recent fighting engaged in a spirited samboosak-eating contest to benefit a local school.

"We've always prided ourselves on our diversity of opinion, as well as our real-time news coverage," senior news producer Sameer Hadi said. "But it doesn't hurt to report things that everyone can agree on. I think the story we're doing this evening will bring a smile to our viewers' faces. It is the story of Abdul Al-Sattar Hali, who recently won the $1 million Bahrain State Lottery, but was unable to collect, because he was in prison. Can you imagine?"

Al-Jazeera had also done a story concerning Hali in April, when scandal erupted after they aired photos of the blindfolded, nude pottery vendor being hosed down by American troops at Abu Ghraib.

Sign up For The Onion's Newsletter

Give your spam filter something to do.

X Close