Shock greeted the surprise announcement that from the end of the year the BBC will no longer broadcast in English - only Arabic.
The initiative, entitled Bridging The Gulf is an attempt, according the BBC website, to "tear down the absurd prejudices English people having against the Middle East."
This follows the arrival of Muhammad al Mohammed (formerly known as Mark Thomson) as Director General, who has made some surprising changes since his conversion to the Islamic faith. The changes, which include the strict segregation among men and women in all BBC offices and flying a crescent flag over Broadcasting House has raised a few eyebrows in the press.
"What do the papers know about the prophet, (may peace be upon him)?" Said DG Mohammed, brandishing a scimitar, "all those Tory rags are run by Jewish Capitalists and liars. The BBC is the only broadcaster that tells the truth."
And what about broadcasting in Arabic?
"Arabic is the language of Al-lah, and so is the only vehicle worthy of the BBC."
Other employees of the corporation are said not to be pleased with having to learn Arabic but, as of yet none openly voiced dissent.
Perhaps because the DG strictly enforces sharia law at Broadcasting House, with a recent leaked memo stating "breaking BBC rules is considered apostasy, and is punishable by death".