Thursday, 30 April, 2009
From Kirsty Wark:
Tonight the expenses row threatening another bloody nose for the Prime Minister. This has been a week of mismanagement and misjudgement. Where does all this leave Gordon Brown's standing at home and abroad? He experienced a disastrous defeat over the Gurkhas - inflicted as much by rebellious Labour back benchers as by Joanna Lumley - and a less than enthusiastic reception at the PLP, and today at Westminster the debacle over MPs allowances. Our politics team assesses the damage to Gordon Brown.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has raised the alert of a swine flu pandemic to five on their six point scale and following the confirmation of a new case in the Netherlands and Switzerland, the virus is officially in 12 countries. The Prime Minister has said all necessary steps are being taken to ensure Britain is prepared for a possible swine flu pandemic. Our Science Editor Susan Watts has been examining exactly what that means and whether there are gaps in our armour.
Leaving Basra, at the height of the combat operations after the invasion in March 2003 Britain had 46,000 troops in Iraq. Today British forces handed over military control of the Basra area to US commanders and by 31 May all but a handful of the last 4,000 British troops will be home. A memorial service was held for the 179 service men and women who have died in the conflict. Gordon Brown said today marked "the closing chapter of the combat mission in Iraq".
Our Diplomatic Editor Mark Urban reported from Basra throughout the past six years - with analysis of the British role in Basra, and stories of sadness, privations and joy as the population of Basra navigated their way through daily life in the city. Tonight he reflects on what was for him, and them, some of the most important moments of the past six years.
Rolling Stone magazine rated him one of the three greatest guitarists of all time. Happy Birthday BB King. Stephen Smith has been with the Blues guitar legend in his private lair on his tour bus in Philadelphia, as the irrepressible performer celebrates his 83rd birthday. They've been talking about everything - well music, race, sex and death.
Join us at 10.30pm.