Type of site
|News and opinion|
|Available in||English, Arabic, Spanish, Russian, Turkish, German, Serbo-Croatian|
|Area served||the Arab world|
|Editor||Leith Abou Fadel|
|Alexa rank||14,615 (September 2017[update])|
Al-Masdar News (sometimes abbreviated AMN) (Arabic: المصدر نيوز) is an online newspaper founded by Leith Abou Fadel. Al-Masdar means "the source" in Arabic. Al-Masdar's coverage focuses largely on conflict zones in the Middle East: Syria, Yemen, and Iraq. Al-Masdar has been described as being pro-president Bashar al-Assad.
Al-Masdar News (AMN) was launched in August 2014 as a media service that provides frontline news and analysis from the Middle East.
Following the April 2017 Khan Shaykhun chemical attack in the Idlib Governorate, al-Masdar News published an opinion article entitled "Jumping to conclusions; something is not adding up in Idlib chemical weapons attack". A report by the Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab (DFRLab) published three days later described a "digital forensics" trail which showed how this al-Masdar opinion article was later linked by conspiracy, pro-Russian and far-right websites. It described al-Masdar News as "an unofficial government outlet" and said that it had "repeatedly attacked regime critics and witnesses to regime atrocities, notably the White Helmets." Business Insider showed the conclusions in the AMN article differing markedly from those of other analysts. After deputy editor Paul Antonopoulos (author of the controversial opinion article Jumping to conclusions) was shown to be active on the neo-Nazi site Stormfront, he was forced to resign from al-Masdar on 28 April 2017. Al-Masdar issued a statement on behalf of its board of directors, saying they found his behaviour "wholly unacceptable" and strongly condemned it, while also apologizing to its readers and all those offended by his actions.
The website was described by the BBC and Newsweek as having a pro-Syrian government viewpoint, while The Independent describes it as "sympathetic to the Syrian regime". The New York Times has described it as a "pro-government website". Leonid Bershidsky writing in Bloomberg News, also calls al-Masdar "somewhat pro-Assad."
Business Insider reporter Natasha Bertrand has described Leith Abou Fadel, the editor of al-Masdar, as someone who had pushed a conspiracy theory in the past, and described him as an "Assad loyalist".
- "Almasdarnews.com Traffic, Demographics and Competitors - Alexa". Alexa Internet. Retrieved 18 September 2017.
- "Contributors & Staff: Editorial Team". Al Masdar News. Retrieved 30 April 2017.
- "Al-Masdar: The Source for Arabic Teaching and Learning". ISKME.org. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
- Al-Masdar News - About
- Antonopoulos, Paul. Jumping to conclusions; something is not adding up in Idlib chemical weapons attack. Al-Masdar News. 2017-04-04.
- Nimmo, Ben; Barojan, Donara (7 April 2017). "How the alt-right brought #SyriaHoax to America". Medium.com. Atlantic Council.
- Bertrand, Natasha (8 April 2017). "From Al-Masdar to InfoWars: How a pro-Assad conspiracy theory got picked up by the far-right". Business Insider UK.
- Jennine Khalik (2 May 2017). "Journalist Paul Antonopoulos outed for racist slurs". The Australian. Retrieved 3 May 2017.
- "Board of Directors". Al-Masdar News. 3 May 2017.
- "Board of Directors Statement – April 28th, 2017". Al-Masdar News. 28 April 2017.
- "Syria conflict: 'Israeli jets' strike outside Damascus". Bbc.co.uk. 30 November 2016. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
- O'Connor, Tom (17 March 2017). "Syria at War: As U.S. Bombs Rebels, Russia Strikes ISIS and Israel Targets Assad". Newsweek. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
- McKernan, Bethan (2 February 2017). "Syrian army creates unit just for women after so many sign up to fight Isis". The Independent.
- Mackey, Robert; Saad, Hwaida (23 September 2015). "Syrian Refugee Tripped in Hungary Fights Unfounded Accusations of Extremist Ties". New York Times. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
- Bertshidsky, Leonid. "Trump Squeezes Putin in Syria. Don't Assume That's Good".