Colin Powell contradicts Current TV memo on Al-Jazeera sale

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Jamie Weinstein
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      Jamie Weinstein

      Jamie Weinstein is Senior Editor of The Daily Caller. His work has appeared in The Weekly Standard, the New York Daily News and The Washington Examiner, among many other publications. He also worked as the Collegiate Network Journalism Fellow at Roll Call Newspaper and is the winner of the 2011 "Funniest Celebrity in Washington" contest. A regular on Fox News and other cable news outlets, Weinstein received a master’s degree in the history of international relations from the London School of Economics in 2009 and a bachelor's degree in history and government from Cornell University in 2006. He is the author of the political satire, "The Lizard King: The Shocking Inside Account of Obama's True Intergalactic Ambitions by an Anonymous White House Staffer."

Current TV co-founders Joel Hyatt and Al Gore seemingly attempted to help insulate themselves from criticism for selling their TV network to Al-Jazeera by invoking the name of former Secretary of State Gen. Colin Powell. Only, the story they tell about Powell’s relationship with Al-Jazeera is not true, a spokeswoman for the general tells The Daily Caller.

“Colin Powell told Al [Gore] that Al-Jazeera is the only cable news network he watches,” Hyatt wrote in a Current TV staff email Wednesday announcing the sale of the network.

But in a statement to TheDC, Powell spokeswoman Peggy Cifrino said the general watches many cable news networks — not just Al-Jazeera.

“General Powell watches a number of foreign news channels to include Al-Jazeera America. He also watches U.S. cable channels,” she wrote.

In follow up email, Cifrino clarified that she meant Al-Jazeera English, not Al-Jazeera America, which is what Current TV is slated to become.

It was announced Wednesday that the Qatari-based news network purchased Current TV for a reported $500 million. Gore and Hyatt will join the advisory board of the newly created Al-Jazeera America.

Critics of the Al-Jazeera’s English and Arabic networks say they have anti-Israel and anti-American biases.

Current TV did not return TheDC’s request for comment on a number of issues regarding its sale to Al-Jazeera.

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