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Archives for June 2008

Monday, 30 June, 2008

Ian Lacey | 16:39 UK time, Monday, 30 June 2008

The Future of the NHS

Thanks for your thoughts earlier in the day on our plans for tonight and for your views on the future of the NHS and whether it really can last another 60 years. Do keep them coming - we'll be sending comments over to the production team before the programme.

docs152.jpgSo - at the risk of repeating myself - tonight, as the government unveils Lord Darzi's prescription for the National Health Service, we'll be examining his and other visions for the future of the NHS in a special edition of Newsnight. Gavin will be presenting live from a brand new super-surgery in Leicester where he'll be debating the prospects for the NHS with politicians, professionals and practitioners.

NHS at 60

nhs_logo100x100.jpgAnd don't forget to keep the contributions coming in for our 'picture of health' interactive map of NHS concerns. Liz MacKean will present a round up of your views on Wednesday's Newsnight as she travels the country in an antique ambulance. Liz explains how the map works here.

Before that on Tuesday's Newsnight Economics Editor Paul Mason will doing some number crunching: how big is the NHS funding gap and what can be done to bridge it? And on Thursday's programme Newsnight Review regular Kwame Kwei-Armah will be charting the changes of the NHS in the last 60 years as portrayed on TV and cinema - from Dr Finlay to Charlie in Casualty.

Can the NHS last another 60 years?

Ian Lacey | 12:43 UK time, Monday, 30 June 2008

nhs_logo100x100.jpgAs the government unveils Lord Darzi's prescription for the National Health Service, we'll be examining his and other visions for the future of the NHS in a special edition of Newsnight tonight.

Live from a brand new 'supersurgery' in Leicester we'll be debating the prospects for the NHS with politicians, professionals, practitioners and the public - but we also want to hear from you.

So what should the future of the NHS be and can it really last another 60 years?

(And don't forget to keep the contributions coming in for our 'picture of health' interactive map of NHS concerns - Liz MacKean will present a round up of your views on Wednesday's Newsnight.)

Prospects, Monday 30 June, 2008

Ian Lacey | 10:32 UK time, Monday, 30 June 2008

Morning. On Friday we marked Gordon Brown's first year as prime minister with a rather fine looking cake. Just as I got home Michael Crick emailed me a picture of himself eating said cake and asking me to post it up on his blog, with apologies to Gordon Brown. Never mind the PM, Michael, what happened to my slice?

Anyhow, tonight there's no cake but we are marking another anniversary - 60 years of the NHS - in a special programme (watch previous Newsnight specials here). Here's programme producer Simon Enright on plans for tonight.

docs152.jpg"Tonight we are going to devote almost all the programme - other news permitting - to debating the NHS. With Lord Darzi's report claiming to provide a blueprint for the next ten years - and the NHS celebrating 60 years this week - we'll be asking just what the future holds for healthcare in Britain.

We're live from one of the supersurgeries trumpeted by the government. It's in Leicester. Cost £13 million. And is so new the builders are stepping aside for us for one day as they finish it off.


nhs_logo100x100.jpgThis is the first in our week-long look at the NHS at 60, so keep watching and keep contributing to our 'picture of health' comments strand. Liz MacKean will present the pick of your views on the NHS on Wednesday. And there's lots of great material on the NHS at 60 on the BBC News website.

Friday, 27 June, 2008

Brian Thornton | 16:43 UK time, Friday, 27 June 2008

There's no review tonight but those in need of a jazz folk fix can check out last night's film on the cult group Pentangle. But on the programme tonight we concentrate on democracy in action, with one notable exception...

Happy Returns:
henleytory203100.jpgSome by-elections end in resounding victory. Some end in narrow defeat. And then there's the kind where your party comes in fifth place behind the BNP.
I'm not sure Labour has coined a term for those yet - not one that's broadcast-friendly anyway.
Yes, Henley wasn't the best way for Gordon Brown to celebrate a year in the job. But in many ways, it's the least of his problems right now.
Some insiders believe the reason they hardly threw any money at the Henley campaign was because, quite simply, they don't have any.
Tonight, as we examine Labour's financial position, one of Labour's chief fundraisers - Lord Levy - has said the Labour Party needs seriously to consider getting rid of its leader (watch the clip here).
We'll be asking how a party raises funds to start fighting a general election when the goodwill and public support simply isn't there.

But any election result pales rather into insignificance beside what is happening as I write in Zimbabwe. By the time we go on air, we are expecting a victorious Mugabe to declare victory in a race in which only he was competing. Morgan Tsvangirai's name appeared on the ballot paper for the presidential run-off even though the opposition leader had pulled out. He warned his people not to vote for him - to save their own lives - although he says millions have now refused to vote at all. So just what happens next? So much international condemnation, shaking of heads and gathering of steam - but will the momentum be lost once Mugabe settles himself comfortably back into the job?

Cheap cheap:
What kind of life can a chicken have had when it ends up sold at Tesco for £2? The TV chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall has called on the store to improve its bird-rearing standards, and he took his call to the Tesco AGM this morning. His motion was defeated but he is claiming a minor victory at least for persuading 10% of the shareholders to vote with him. But when food prices are tripling and it costs nearly £75 to fill your car, can anyone afford to care? Tonight, as Asda and Tesco wage price wars to help us through the credit crunch we'll be asking Hugh - and others - whether now is really the right time to be discussing the rights of a bird that's going to be eaten anyway.

Prospects for Friday, 27 June, 2008

Ian Lacey | 10:37 UK time, Friday, 27 June 2008

Morning all. It's Friday, which would ordinarily mean much activity in the Newsnight Review corner. But I've just been over and there are two very looking relaxed producers and no one else - because the programme's off air tonight (something to do with some sort of music event in Somerset). But Newsnight itself is definitely on tonight and here's the current thinking from tonight's producer Shaminder Nahal. Do add your thoughts below.


henleytory203100.jpgHumiliation in Henley on the anniversary of Brown's first year as Prime Minister. Labour lost its deposit there - is it in any state to fight the next election effectively? The party finances are in a mess - it is up to £24m in the red, with some reports saying donors are reluctant to give, thanks to Brown's collapse in the polls and a series of police investigations into party funding. So where does Labour go from here?

Robert Mugabe is the only candidate in Zimbabwe's presidential election run-off today. After all the violence and intimidation, what will happen today?

Cheap chicken. Tesco share-holders are to vote on a resolution proposed by the TV chef, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, which demands better welfare standards for intensively-reared chickens. Interested?

Other things:

-Obama and Clinton campaign together for the first time.
-Verdict expected in the McCartney case in Belfast.
-23 people have been killed in Anbar province in Iraq. Tomorrow the province will pass into Iraqi security control.
-Bill Gates retires from daily operations at Microsoft. (watch Paul Mason's previous report - 'How Bill Gates changed our world'.)

Yours, Shaminder"

Over to you then...

Thursday, 26 June, 2008

Brian Thornton | 18:31 UK time, Thursday, 26 June 2008

Just who knew what about the use of torture at Guantanamo Bay?
This long running, often asked question is gathering steam as I write.
There is a congressional probe going on in Washington right now - Dick Cheney's Chief of staff has been made to testify. It's long been assumed that those at the bottom got away with certain illegitimate practices because those at the top turned a blind eye. But what if the orders actually came from the top? Will anyone be naming names? We'll have the latest from Washington

We have some important new revelations about the Conservative Party Chair, Caroline Spelman, and her former nanny. The Parliamentary Commissioner for standards is currently investigating whether Ms Spelman broke any rules in paying her nanny - who she insists also worked as her secretary - from parliamentary allowances. You'll have to wait until tonight to see Michael Crick's report.

Communication Problems?
By tomorrow Gordon Brown will have been in power for a whole year, and as we mark the anniversary in the second of our special reports, we'll be discussing the Prime Minister's communications skills. Just how does he come across to the voters that he so desperately needs to talk to.

Leonard Cohen's at Glastonbury, the Beach Boys' lead man is playing London. Perhaps all great things have their time again. Yes, even Pentangle the cult heroes of 1960s folk-jazz have stopped running restaurants in Minorca and gone back to music. They're back in fashion. And we feel duty bound to remind you why.

Prospects for Thursday, 26 June

Brian Thornton | 11:22 UK time, Thursday, 26 June 2008

Good morning, lots of interesting stories around today but these are the ones tonight's programme producer Dan Kelly is focusing on..

It's been called a "Green Revolution" but will it work? Gordon Brown has announced his plans to hugely increase the amount of renewable energy in the UK. He has to meet tough EU targets on the use of wind, solar and other renewable sources of energy and it could all cost £100bn. Apart from the cost, there are other huge practical obstacles in the way - Susan Watts is on the case.

Is poor communication at the heart of Gordon Brown's problems? David Grossman has the second film in our series on Brown's first year. Who would you like on to discuss this?

We have a film on the cult band Pentangle - big on influence rather than sales - who are reforming in the autumn of their life.

We have room for other stories - what do you think? Equality and the CRB checks stories are also good, other ideas, guest suggestions?

Wednesday, 25 June, 2008

Ian Lacey | 18:12 UK time, Wednesday, 25 June 2008

It's been a hectic day here - we've got a lot of strong stories and films in production and it seems that most of them have been in the running order at some point. Thanks for all your comments and suggestions this morning. Today's programme producer Robert Morgan has finally nailed down tonight's offering.

earth203.jpgEver thought of global warming as a threat to national security? If the answer's no, think again. Our science editor Susan Watts has the inside track on how America's intelligence agencies view the implications of global climate change. They've looked ahead to 2030 and present the coming US administration with a choice - wake up to the climate-changed world, and help it to adapt - or lose status as a superpower.

Newsnight has learned that Britain's top Asian policeman is considering action against the Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair alleging racism. Any action from the Met's Assistant Commissioner Tarique Ghaffur would follow similar allegations made against Sir Ian during an employment tribunal this week. Newsnight has been told that Tarique Ghaffur has been compiling a dossier for two years, that he has persuaded the Association of Chief Police Officers legal committee that his case is good enough for them to fund it, and that he has signed up Kingsley Napley as his lawyers. Tarique Ghaffur will be taking his file to a meeting of the executive of the National Black Police Association tomorrow and they are expected to back him.

We'll be speaking live to Ali Dizaei of the Black Police Association. Read the story as we broke it on the website this afternoon.

Political Editor, Michael Crick takes us through the ups and downs of Gordon Brown's first year as PM. We'll also analyse his year with our panel of political grandees, Michael Howard, Lord Hattersley and Charles Kennedy.

Thanks again for all your suggestions as to the one thing that Gordon Brown might do to regain public support... not sure he'll find them all helpful.

What could Gordon do to turn it around?

Ian Lacey | 12:12 UK time, Wednesday, 25 June 2008

brown203_june08.jpgIt's a year since Gordon Brown took office as prime minister. Since his brief honeymoon period there has been a series of PR disasters and crises: the election-that-wasn't; inheritance tax policy; data records loss; Northern Rock and the credit crunch; and losses in the London Mayoral vote and the Crewe and Nantwich by-election. The latest polling (for example today in the The Guardian) makes for disturbing reading for Mr Brown and Labour MPs.

Some commentators are suggesting that there is now nothing that the PM can do to turn around his and his government's fortunes.

But if there was just one thing that Mr Brown could do to help restore his public standing, what would it be?

Prospects for Wednesday, 25 June, 2005

Ian Lacey | 10:20 UK time, Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Morning all. Tonight's programme producer is Robert Morgan. Here's his brief to the team on what we've got planned for this evening.

"We're planning to do a special programme tonight about Gordon Brown one year on from becoming PM. Do come to the meeting with ideas on how we should do this.

We also have a film from the Baghdad blogger, Salam Pax on Iraqi asylum seekers in the UK."

Brief indeed.

We'll have a suitable lunchtime debate pegged to Gordon Brown's first year in office here on the blog - look out for that later. But a year ago Martha Kearney looked at what we could expect from a Brown government. To remind yourself of her predictions click here.

And you can see a selection of Salam Pax's past Newsnight films here.

Tuesday, 24 June, 2008

Brian Thornton | 17:49 UK time, Tuesday, 24 June 2008

South Africa's ruling ANC party has added its voice to growing international concerns about the violence in Zimbabwe - accusing Robert Mugabe's government of "riding roughshod" over democratic rights. The leader of the main MDC opposition, Morgan Tsvangirai, has formally withdrawn from Friday's presidential run-off. Last night, the United Nations condemned the campaign of political violence and intimidation by militias loyal to President Mugabe. Lots of words - but what can the international community actually do? Will the United States take the lead? We hope to be speaking to Jendayi Frazer, the US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs.

cameron203.jpgThe Conservatives are claiming that up to 100,000 lives a year can be saved if NHS targets are scrapped. David Cameron unveiled his party's plans for health in England today. But critics say the Tories are just playing safe, and that they need to be more radical. The Shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley is joining us live.

Architects aren't revolutionary anymore. They're constrained by a cultural consensus that forces them to worry too much about being green and about public consultation. That's according to "mantownhuman" - a group of architects who are launching a manifesto for change. They'll reveal their vision to our culture correspondent Madeleine Holt. Are they right? We'll discuss this with one of Britain's leading architects - Sir Nicholas Grimshaw, the designer Wayne Hemingway, who's been working with Wimpey homes, and Austin Williams, from "mantownhuman".

Prospects for Tuesday, 24 June

Brian Thornton | 10:16 UK time, Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Good morning, Shaminder, is the output editor today. She has lots of ideas for tonight's programme - would you like to add any?

We have a film from Gillian Lacey-Solymar and Sara Afshar on how the biotech industry has lost almost half of its value in the last year. Investors are running scared. Many innovative companies are facing crisis. What went wrong?

Zimbabwe. The UN Security Council last night condemned the violence in Zimbabwe and declared that a free and fair election would be "impossible". It looks like we have an interview with Jendayi Frazer, the US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs. This gives us a chance to discover what America thinks is the way forward. Have you any ideas on how we could do a set-up into this interview that is striking and different in production terms?

Various politics things......

The Conservatives are unveiling their plans on health today. David Cameron will argue that Labour has "tested to destruction the idea that the NHS can be improved by more bureaucracy, more central control and more initiatives from the Department of Health". We've been waiting for policy meat from the Tories, but is there anything new here? Are they being radical enough?

It's a year since Gordon Brown became the leader of the Labour Party. Among the many problems he faces - the party finances are in a mess, and there are fears the lack of funds could threaten Labour's ability to fight the next general election. Should we look at this?

MPs vote on the controversial Planning Bill tomorrow. Labour backbenchers have been voicing their opposition, as the Bill allows for faster consent for big infrastructure projects - such as motorways and power stations. Will there be another revolt against the Government? Should we test the mood?

Other things....

A largely unknown Turkish Islamic scholar has topped a poll of the world's 100 leading thinkers. Fethullah Gulen got more than half a million votes in the survey by Prospect magazine and Foreign Policy, an American publication. We tried to get an interview with him, and found him to be an even more mysterious figure than we originally thought. Interested? Should we profile him? The list is published in Prospect this Thursday.

Green targets and the need for public consultation are killing creativity in architecture. That's according to "Mantownhuman" - a group of architects who are next week, launching a manifesto for change. "No more limp-wristed architecture but buildings with a hairy chest and a firm fist", they cry - urging more "architecture for architecture's sake". This cabal will reveal their vision to Madeleine Holt in a short film.

We could play out on the Monet painting. Have you got any other things you are desperately interested in?

Monday, 23 June, 2008

Brian Thornton | 18:09 UK time, Monday, 23 June 2008

Is this the endgame for Robert Mugabe or is he set to survive, defiant as ever?
Following Morgan Tsvangirai's decision not to contest the presidential run-offs for fear of "genocide," - on Newsnight tonight Archbishop Desmond Tutu, urges African leaders not to recognise Mugabe as the legitimate leader of Zimbabwe. He also says that tougher sanctions would mean greater hardship - but the short term pain would be worth it to get Mugabe out. Here, the Foreign Secretary David Miliband emphasised that Britain no longer recognises the regime of Robert Mugabe as the legitimate government of Zimbabwe. We'll be speaking to South Africa's Ambassador to the UN.
Can we expect a long wave of public sector strikes this summer? Council workers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland have voted to strike, after rejecting a 2.45% pay offer. The government are desperate to keep pay settlements below the inflation rate - but will they stand up to the workers?

Match fixing
On the opening day of Wimbledon, we investigate allegations that eight of the 45 tennis matches worldwide being investigated for match fixing may have taken place at the tournament since 2002 - but what are the facts, and what can tennis authorities do about it?

US politics
rally1968.jpgBarack Obama has been making overtures to Hillary Clinton in the hope of consolidating the Democratic vote - and securing substantial funds - increasing the likelihood of a harmonious Democrat convention this summer. That would be a far cry from the scenes 40 years ago at the convention in Chicago. As part of our series on 1968, Peter Marshall has been in Chicago, scene of riots and protests over Vietnam - when the party was riven in two by the war and eight anti-war protestors including Abbie Hoffman and Tom Hayden were charged with conspiracy in connection with violence in and around the Convention - and his film contains some terrific archive and interviews with long ago protesters and police..

Prospects for Monday, 23 June

Brian Thornton | 10:27 UK time, Monday, 23 June 2008

Good morning, here are the prospects from today's output editor, Dan. Do let us know what you think..

Will there be any meaningful response from the international community to yesterday's decision by the MDC to pull out of the Zimbabwean election in the face of Zanu-PF violence? In particular, will southern African countries intervene in the crisis? Which guests could we get to move this story on?

There are new property transaction figures out today from the Treasury which cover the last 12 months, and we have an interview with housing expert Professor David Miles on how the market could emerge from the credit crunch.

Match fixing allegations have greeted the start of Wimbledon. What is the truth about the "irregular betting patterns" and why are certain players blacklisted by book makers?

Peter Marshall has a strong retrospective film on the infamous Democratic Party Convention of 1968 held in Chicago - complete with pigs and Yippie riots.

What other ideas have you got? Plenty of other stories we could do...


Newsnight Review - 20 June, 2008

Stuart Denman | 23:00 UK time, Friday, 20 June 2008

My colleagues on Newsnight Review are just about to go on air - here are details of what's in the programme, written by Kirsty. Do post your comments about the programme and the items being discussed tonight...

On Review at 11pm: Sex, crime, passion and painting... with guests Rosie Boycott, Andrew Motion, and Emily King.

We kick off with the new film about Dylan Thomas - or at least the loves in his life. The Edge of Love stars Sienna Miller, Keira Knightley, Matthew Rhys and Cillian Murphy. Thomas's daughter Aeronwy who was ten when he died said recently she believed he needed the isolation of home to write, and company and alcohol to live. The Edge of Love concentrates less on the poetry and more on the passion for Caitlin his wife and his childhood sweetheart Vera whom he invites into their life.

When Cy Twombly the American abstract Expressionist was at Tate Modern the other day to see preparations for his new retrospective, the 80-year-old artist watched as giant canvasses he hadn't seen for decades were unrolled - how amazing that must have been. The show Cycles and Seasons reveals the restless energy, the moods and melancholy of the artist who made his life in Italy and who infuses his canvasses with poetry, literature and classicism - often in fragments of writing and repeated geometry.

When Bill Clinton walked down the steps of his campaign plane in 1992 holding a copy of one of Walter Mosley's novels, the American writer's sales were said to have tripled and now he's one of the country's foremost writers. The son of a black father and a Jewish mother he pens everything from the Easy Rawlins' detective novels, to sci-fi, political writings, a pornographic novel and now Diablerie - a dark crime thriller about Ben Dibbuk who is emotionally dead to the world and despite his outward show of normality is a wreck. He may or may not have committed a vicious murder. Mosley chose the name Dibbuk to suggest the Yiddish word dybbuk - a disembodied spirit that because of former sins wanders the earth.

Mythology of a very bloody kind is at the heart of Teeth - a kind of teen comic horror movie about Vagina Dentata - the "she monster" in several ancient cultures. In the character Dawn, played by Jess Weixler, it's alive and well and living in a Texas suburb. As if to keep the condition she doesn't know she has at bay, Dawn joins a chastity club, similar to ones all over the States. But the truth or at least, the myth will out: with the most devastating results for the men around her. Written and directed by Mitchell Lichtenstein (the son of the pop art artist) rather than have the woman as the victim, he wanted to show some girl power. Ouch!

Friday, 20 June, 2008

Brian Thornton | 18:41 UK time, Friday, 20 June 2008

Tonight we begin by exploring the gathering storm in Zimbabwe, and the possibility according to a senior Western diplomat that that Robert Mugabe is "moments" away from being indicted by the UN for crimes against humanity. Is that possible and practical? The violence is escalating - senior African leaders are now openly criticising Robert Mugabe, and with the murder and torture of many MDC supporters, the MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai will announce on Monday whether he will withdraw from the Presidential run-offs next week. We'll be joined by the Zimbabwean Ambassador to the UN.

The EU Treaty row took another turn today. If you thought Britain had fully ratified the Lisbon Treaty yesterday - it hasn't. The Prime Minister made the surprise announcement today that we have to wait for a High Court ruling on a bid by the tycoon Stuart Wheeler to force a referendum on the treaty. The judge in the case expressed surprise that the government had pressed ahead with the ratification process. Meanwhile all sorts of accusations are flying around the Brussels summit apportioning blame for the Irish No vote - Nicholas Sarkozy pointed the finger at the EU commissioner Peter Mandelson. David Grossman is there making sense of all that - and I will be interviewing Stuart Wheeler.

The murder of Georgi Markov on Waterloo Bridge in 1978 brought the Cold War to the heart of London. He was a communist defector from Bulgaria working for the BBC and he was thought to have been stabbed by the poisoned tip of an umbrella. The assassin was never found although the KGB and the Bulgarian secret police were suspected, but Scotland Yard is back on the case. It confirmed today that detectives have visited Bulgaria twice this year. We revisit the story of the man murdered by a tiny pellet containing 0.2mg of ricin - the third and successful attempt on his life.

Should Mugabe be tried for war crimes?

Brian Thornton | 12:52 UK time, Friday, 20 June 2008

mugabe203.jpgIt's a week before presidential elections in Zimbabwe. The opposition MDC says at least 70 of its supporters have now been killed and 25,000 forced from their homes in a state-sponsored campaign of violence.

A senior Western diplomatic source is reported as saying that Mugabe is moments away from being indicted for war crimes. Is that the best international response for the future of Zimbabwe?

Prospects for Friday, 20 June

Brian Thornton | 11:27 UK time, Friday, 20 June 2008

Here are the early thoughts of today's output editor, Robert, and as you can see he hasn't yet decided on a lead for tonight's programme. Which one would you choose? Or maybe we should go for something completely different.. Let us know what you think..

Good morning everyone,

There's quite a bit around today. Zimbabwe, the EU Council and Sarkozy's outburst, the Saudi oil meeting this weekend are prime contenders. The Met's Markov investigation and the Flickr story look good too. Do come to the meeting with ideas on how to do any of these or other stories.


How do we escalate this job?

Stuart Denman | 09:47 UK time, Friday, 20 June 2008

In the BBC's Television Centre, there is an escalator that doesn't move. Not up, not down. It just sits there, thinking, as an escalator might, about why it was brought into being to escalate and so why, for several years at least, it hasn't budged.

Read the rest of this entry

Get the picture?

Stuart Denman | 19:32 UK time, Thursday, 19 June 2008

So now the web team has its own blog space. But while Mark Urban and Michael Crick get swanky new pictures taken for their blogs (while Peter Barron's is recycled) we're left with a big white space. It took several BBC committee meetings to decide on the title "From the web team" so we'd rather not go through that again. If there are any suggestions out there that don't involve pictures of ourselves then let us know.

Thursday, 19 June, 2008

Stuart Denman | 18:45 UK time, Thursday, 19 June 2008

It's been a busy day in the Newsnight office, but today's output editor, Shaminder, doesn't look too stressed - which must mean that a running order is taking shape. As I look around I notice that today's production team is almost entirely female - although a male producer got the Brussels gig. Anyway, details of the programme are below - do add your comments either before or after the programme.


The second of our two extraordinary "Unseen Burma" films. Six weeks ago, cyclone Nargis swept through the country, killing 130,000 people. The Burmese authorities have refused access to many journalists seeking to visit the disaster zone, but the investigative journalist Simon Ostrovsky managed to get there for Newsnight. After his film, we will be discussing what more needs to be done for the survivors, and how the eyewitness reports we've featured on the programme this week have challenged our perceptions on how the aid effort was handled by the Burmese authorities.

(Watch a short clip from tonight's film below:)

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Our political correspondent David Grossman is in Brussels for today's big European Council summit, to try to discover what on earth Europe's leaders are going to do about the Irish NO on the Lisbon Treaty.


We have an interview with one of the most powerful women in the world (according to Forbes) - Christine Lagarde, the French Finance Minister. She'll be giving us the French take on global economic turmoil, and the turmoil over Europe's future.


Can GM crops help solve the world food crisis? The Environment Minister, Phil Woolas, says we need to debate what role GM could play. So we will.

Hope you can join us later.


Take a look at the line-up for tomorrow's Newsnight Review. Kirsty and company will be looking at the Keira Knightley film The Edge of Love, among other things. Visit the Review site for more details.


And today we've re-launched Newsnight's blogs, featuring comments and analysis from our Diplomatic Editor Mark Urban, Political Editor Michael Crick, and of course our very own editor Peter Barron.


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