In 2017, Alhurra invigorated its investigative reports in the Middle East and surrounding regions. The network created an investigative news team to expose and shine a light on issues not well covered in the region. The reporting effort is striking a nerve with local organizations and governments.
One of the first reports Alhurra produced was an expose into the tactics and reach of Hezbollah in the Middle East and the United States. It highlighted the ways in which some Arabic-language television channels were spreading hate-inciting content, including within children’s programs. This report cited several pro-Hezbollah channels, including the channel Al Manar, and presented how these shows viciously use inflammatory language in their descriptions of Israel and the U.S. Following this, pro-Hezbollah newspaper Al-Akhbar criticized Alhurra for its investigative reporting, stating that “Alhurra cunningly equated hatred-inciting religious channels with channels known for the animosity towards Israel.”
Alhurra also broadcasted an hour-long documentary about the opioid crisis in the U.S. called “Overcoming the Opioid Crisis… American stories.” It focused on how substance abuse impacts the country and featured interviews with family members who have lost loved ones to opioid addiction and are now trying to help others recover. It was followed by another hour-long documentary called “Opioid Crisis in the Middle East” that comparatively examines the drug epidemic in the Middle East, a topic considered too sensitive for other networks. This program generated heated discussions on social media and was extensively cited in the Arabic press.