The next evolution in al-Qaeda’s propaganda war is a television channel visible only via the Internet, which has already begun operating on an experimental basis. The ‘channel’ has evolved out of the experience of jihadi internet forums – in particular of the al-Firdaws site – and al-Qaeda’s own experiments in ‘news bulletins’ and talk shows produced by the Islamic Media Front. The new channel – called al-Firdaws TV – aims to publish the most important video and audio documents in the recent history of the terror network.
The documents include speeches by Osama bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri and the late Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, as well as documentaries on mujahadeen.
The broadcasts start at 8pm Mecca time and run till midnight.
Like most traditional Islamic television channels, the broadcasts open with a reading from the Koran, followed by a film on al-Zarqawi and various videso that have already been published on the Internet such as that of the London bombs. The end of transmission is marked by Jihadi songs, calling for Islamic martyrdom.
To view the programming of al-Firdaws all that is required is a wide-band connection and a multimedia programme such as Windows Media Player or Real Player.
Radical Islamist internet forums publish the planned programmes daily and the channel organisers are seeking feedback from al-Qaeda sympathisers, on what they think of the new channel.