Alhurra TV, an obscure U.S. government-funded news organization that broadcasts to the people of the Middle East, took an unexpected turn on the domestic stage Thursday when it captured on video a dramatic car chase near the White House.

Few in the U.S. have heard of the news outlet, since its Arabic-language programming is available here only on its website, It is funded by the Broadcasting Board of Governors, a U.S. government agency that also operates the Voice of America, a broadcast TV and radio operation that is available in 43 languages.

The chase began when a black car rammed a barricade near the White House and ended 16 blocks away with gunfire on Capitol Hill and the brief lockdown of the U.S. Capitol.

Alhurra is part of the Middle East Broadcasting Networks, an non-profit organization that also include Radio Sawa, an Arabic-language radio station that has studios in Washington, D.C., Dubai and the United Arab Emirates.

End of USA Today commentary.