Wednesday 18 January 2012
Newsnight's Diplomatic and Defence editor Mark Urban has discovered that the UK's efforts to help topple Colonel Gaddafi were not limited to air strikes.
On the ground - and on the quiet - special forces soldiers were blending in with rebel fighters
Mark has also confirmed the existence of a secret unit within the special forces, E Squadron, which was operating in Libya, facilitating intelligence missions in the highly dangerous environment.
Those with a knowledge of the programme insist "they did a tremendous job" and contributed to the final collapse of the Gaddafi regime.
And Jeremy Paxman has an interview with Abdel Hakim Belhadj, a commander of the rebel forces in Libya widely tipped to run for president, who claims that his arrest in 2004 was part of a joint CIA and MI6 operation which was set up to help Col Muammar Gaddafi round up his enemies.
Also on tonight's show, first Boris Bikes and now Boris Island - London's Mayor received a boost today to his support for a new airport in the Thames Estuary.
The government is to hold a formal consultation on the controversial idea, with a report due to be announced in March.
The plan has been widely attacked, from environmentalists concerned about the impact on the birdlife in the area, to those worried about bird strikes on planes and airport operator BAA which has warned of a detrimental effect on Heathrow's economy.
The issue could also drive a wedge in the coalition as the Lib Dems are reportedly opposed to all airport expansion in the south east of England.
David Grossman will ask if the Thames Hub airport plan has wings, or will it be a damp squib in the drive to increase the UK's passenger capacity. We'll also discuss in the studio.
Also on the programme, the IMF has said it will seek to increase its resources by $500bn £325bn to help stabilise the global economy, and the money could be used to help countries in the eurozone struggling to pay their debts.
Our Economics editor Paul Mason took advantage of the visit of Italy's Prime Minister Mario Monti to London to ask what difference the money could make.