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Last Updated: Thursday, 10 May 2007, 21:51 GMT 22:51 UK
Iraq 'jihad TV' mocks coalition
By Alistair Coleman
BBC Monitoring

Image from "Hidden Camera Jihad" TV show
Hidden Camera Jihad is a pastiche of popular US TV shows

An Iraqi satellite TV channel has started to air Hidden Camera Jihad, a video compilation of attacks on US-led coalition forces in Iraq that has appeared on internet message boards since late 2006.

Al-Zawraa TV, which is known for airing videos of attacks by insurgent groups on US forces, recently started airing the programme as part of the channel's staple output of insurgent clips, patriotic songs urging jihad, or holy war, against "occupier forces", and documentary films often of a pro-Sunni, anti-Shia and anti-US slant.

The programme, purportedly produced by the Global Islamic Media Front (GIMF), is a pastiche of the style of hidden camera TV shows popular in the US, editing together insurgent-shot clips of attacks on coalition troops complete with a laughter track, sound effects and mocking English-language captions.

Hidden Camera Jihad first appeared on internet message boards in September 2006 and joins other GIMF video productions that praise Osama Bin Laden, al-Qaeda and other militant groups.

Although much of the insurgent attack footage is shot on hand-held video, most clips appear with logos and on-screen graphics, often in both Arabic and English.

Satellite uplink

Owned by Mishan al-Juburi, leader of the Sunni Arab Front for Reconciliation and Liberation, the station - which initially launched as an entertainment channel - was banned by the Iraqi government in November 2006 for inciting "violence and murder".

It began broadcasting almost immediately via a satellite uplink believed to be outside Iraq's borders.

Al-Zawraa TV has survived a number of attempts to shut down its satellite transmissions.

It currently broadcasts via the Arabsat Badr-3 satellite and can be viewed throughout the Middle East, North Africa and parts of Europe.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.

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