16/12/2011 GMT with George Alagiah


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From meltdown to cold shutdown. Japan says the crippled Fukushima


nuclear plant is now stable. The clean up could take decades and


will cost a fortune. Will Japan ever regain its faith in nuclear


Welcome to GMT. I'm Stephen Sackur. Also in the programme: Bradley


Manning, the US soldier accused of spilling a treasure trove of


secrets to WikiLeaks, gets his first day in court. Christopher


Hitchens, the contrarian whose writing delighted and enfuriated


many millions across the world, has It is 12:30pm here in London,


4:30pm in the afternoon in Moscow and 9:30pm in the evening in Tokyo,


where Japan's Prime Minister has told his nation the Fukushima


nuclear plant is now stable. Nine months after the earthquake and


tsunami which devastated the plant, Yoshihiko Noda says it is now in


cold shutdown. That is a key milestone in efforts to bring the


plant under control, but the nuclear disaster is likely to haunt


Japan for decades. Roland Buerk joins me live now from Tokyo.


caught them be the key issue of 50 ft up the men and women who say


Japan. -- the Fukushima 50. It seemed there was no hope. In recent


months, thousands more have joined the fight. They have achieved their


goal. The reactors are in a more stable phase. Ever since explosions


shook the Booker Shearman plant nine months ago, his struggle has


been under way to bring it under control. -- figure she man. --


Fukishima. It is in a state of colt shut down. Leaks of radiation have


been substantially reduced. TRANSLATION: Since I took office, I


have been saying for Japan to be reborn, the nuclear power plant had


to be saved. It needed to be stabilised. Since 11th March, we


have been working to get the reactors under control.


disaster has shaken the confidence of the Japanese in nuclear power.


It used to provide a third of its electricity. Almost all of the


country's reactors up off-line, because of local safety fears. This


is just one milestone on what will be a very long road to recovery.


The exclusion zone around the power station remains in force. Tens of


thousands of people used to live here - cleaning up the radiation


will mean removing the top soil from the valleys and mountains. A


flat on the 26th floor in Tokyo is where this man had been staying,


since they fled their home near the plant. The view it is good but they


cannot replace the garden they planned to spend their retirement


tending. We do not know where we belong. I cannot discard a way our


own house and garden. They are waiting for us, I believe.


Decommission Inc the power station is the next step. The preferred


option for Japan is to dismantle it piece by piece. There have been


warnings that the process could take up to 40 years. The Japanese


government is promising to reassess the exclusion zone. So much


radiation has been released that some towns could remained


uninhabitable for decades. The couple feel they have been lied to


so often that it is hard to believe their reactors up in cold shut down


now. They want to return home, whatever the risks. Let's take a


look at some of the other stories making headlines around the world


today. Tens of thousands of children have suffered sexual abuse


in Dutch Catholic institutions since 1945. That is according to a


report by an independent commission of inquiry. There are 800 alleged


perpetrators. 100 are still alive. The Church should act immediately


on these findings. What is important today is what the next


steps will be after the bishops. They have postponed their actions


for one and a half years. From now there is no excuse. What we expect


is a recognition of all those crimes. We're talking about crimes


against children. We will reconciliation and compensation for


the suffering that was done to all the victims. The US Army Private,


accused of supplying hundreds of thousands of secret documents to


whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks, is appearing for the first time


before a military court. Bradley Manning was serving as an


intelligence analyst in Iraq when he allegedly accessed military


files. Our correspondent joins me live from Washington. It seems a


long time ago that Bradley Manning was taken into detention. How close


are we to a full military court martial? This is what the hearing


today will determine. Not in just one day but over the next few days.


This is what is called an Article 32 hearing. It could take a few


days until the judges decide whether he should be court-


martialled. It appears as though he -- it is the likely outcome but we


will have to see what happens when the hearing starts. It is taking


place in Fort Meade in Merrie Ireland, which is a very secretive


military base. -- Maryland. It is interesting that private manning


should be appearing there. He has been held for a long time - 19 man


since he was arrested in Iraq. He has pleaded not guilty to charges


of aiding the enemy at transmitting national defence information.


includes a very serious charge of aiding the enemy. What punishment


does he face if, ultimately, the miniature court finds him guilty?


He could face life in prison, which is quite a serious verdict. At this


stage, there are still several other options that the judges could


take. They could dismiss the charges. They could charge him for


some of the lesser charges he is facing. There are about 20 of them.


It is not just about what happens to private Bradley Manning. The US


government is also trying to send a message to anyone else who may


consider leaking any information. This is about the sentence that he


could face but it is an attempt by the US government to send this


message. There are a lot of those who said that what he did in the


end did not cause that much damage. American diplomacy has more or less


recovered. There was not that much information that was unknown in the


other documents he leaked from Army records. What the Government is


trying to do is send a message that this should not happen again.


you very much for joining us. Russia has surprised the UN


Security Council members by circulating a new resolution on the


Syrian crisis. It urges all sides to abandon violence and use


dialogue. It refers to the Syrian Government's disproportionate use


of force. Western nations have expressed doubts about the draft


but say they are willing to The crew of a Russian fishing


vessel have been evacuated from their boat in Antarctica, after it


struck ice in the Ross Sea. The Sparta issued a May Day call early


on Friday morning, triggering an international alert. Rescuers from


new Zealand are expected to take several days to reach the stricken


boat. The self-styled international revolutionary known as Carlos the


Jackal has been convicted and sentenced to life in prison, by a


French court. The Venezuelan national was found guilty of


mounting four bomb attacks in France in the 1980s which killed 11


people. He is already serving a 2011 welfare ever be remembered as


the Year of popular revolution in the Middle East. It started when


Muhammad was easy set himself on fire. He had been banned from


selling fruit to earn a living. That triggered a remarkable series


of events that had begun -- become known as the Arab Spring. We have


been looking back at a tumultuous year in the Arab world. It has been


a year like no other in the Middle East. Some rulers have gone, others


survived, others are still in turmoil. It started in Tunisia. A


year ago, police stopped a young vendor from selling his fruit on


the street. In protest, he set himself on fire - frustrated and


furious at a corrupt and all- powerful regime. He died a week


later and it touched a nerve. People came out and dared to


denounce the Government. Abruptly, the President lost control and fled.


His regime was suddenly over. The touch paper of revolution had been


lit. When it spread to Cairo, people asked, could Egypt be next?


They shared the frustrations of Tunisia. Power concentrated in the


hands of an unelected -- unelected elite and rampant corruption.


are tired. President Mubarak had a huge, all-pervasive security


network. Word of the protests spread on Facebook and Twitter.


Mubarak fled with his family. In Libya, revolt began in the east,


the region long rebellious against the role of Colonel Gaddafi. He


called the rebels rats and cockroaches and about to crush them.


He and his family lived in a world divorced from reality. It looks


like the stalemate and the Western pack and help from Arab states


drove the troops of Gaddafi back. He was dragged out of a drainage


pipe and shot by his own people. In Yemen, popular protest against the


33-year-old ruler has been complicated by tribal rivalries.


The President has agreed to step down. For now, his relatives are in


powerful positions. Bahrain has seen the most serious violence in


the Gulf. There is so much tension in these Shi'ite villages. When


there are security forces, often it ends in tear gas, have more wins


and more animosity. Syria has suffered terribly. Countless people


have been tortured. The president appears to be in denial. Note


government in the world kills its people. It is led by a crazy person.


I became president because of public support. The movement many


called the Arab Awakening has yet to run its course. What started


with the Tunisian throat seller is now unstoppable. The Arab world has


had enough of dictatorship. Still to come: Surviving on odd jobs. We


investigate the workforce in Indonesia where over half the


population is employed in the informal economy. Let's stick with


business - formal and informal. Let's start with more bad news for


some of the world's biggest banks. You are not going to use the line,


Fitch has an itch! It has downgraded six of our major global


banks. But Keyes in the UK, Deutsch Bank in Germany, -- Barclays. They


are saying there has not been a sudden deterioration of the books


but more about the sensitive exposure to the market - basically


to the eurozone and its huge debt. We know that banks are starting to


dry up the lending they usually do between each other. They have been


relying on central banks around the world. If banks stop having access


to many, could we see another Banks have to bring up their


capital levels, and there is no way of lending more and doing that. The


key thing is, where is that lending going to continue? If it continues


in the small to medium-sized businesses, then maybe we will see


the economy move forward. If it stops in that particular segment it


is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. Last week, the


European Central Bank lent out for 2 billion euros to European banks


in one week, that is not sustainable! I happen to know you


are not the biggest computer gaming fan, but even you must be excited


about what has happened to this company. They make online games,


games you can only play on Facebook, and they are going public today on


Wall Street, expecting age huge debut. They sold 100 million shares


at 10 bucks each. He is the interesting thing, they have 2


million users a month, but they only make revenue from a 3% of


those. The question I put to an expert is how do they make their


money? It is the new metric, you get not for three, access to most


of it, with a bit of adverts, or you can upgrade people and convince


them to buy extra items for the Games, to be able to play quicker.


That appeals to quite a lot of people that don't necessarily want


to sit there the entire time, they want to go in, play, get excited,


and they are happy to pay for that. It also gives investors a chance to


pay -- jump on the back of the growth of Facebook. Let's have a


Thank you. We do want to hear what you think, so do get in touch with


us here at G and T. Go to the website, or you can watch


This is GMT, from BBC World news. The headlines: Japan says the


crippled Fukushima nuclear plant is under control, but it could take


decades to clean up. Bradley Manning, the US soldier


accused of spilling secrets to WikiLeaks, gets his first day in


court. Indonesia is home to the world's


biggest -- a 4th biggest population of young people, but many of them


end up surviving on or jobs to make a living. It is estimated that more


than half the working operation in the country is employed in the


informal sector, which is how focus in the latest of our series on the


young and jobless. Our Indonesia correspondent reports from the city


of Makassar in South Sulawesi. This port is bustling with


fishermen selling their goods at dawn. This city has historically


been one of the centres of Trade and Commerce in Indonesia, but for


the use here, it is getting harder and harder to find work. -- for the


youth. This part has one of the highest used unemployment rate in


the country. Many of the young people who end up doing odd jobs or


fishing to make ends meet. Experts say the fact that so many of


Indonesia's youth population end up in the informal sector is one of


the main reasons this country's economy could fail to reach its


full potential. This 22-year-old is one of the lucky ones. She is now


the proud owner of this mobile- phone repair shop. She got help - a


freedom of the technical training course paid for by the


International Labour Organisation. But there is no security net


working in the informal sector. She wants to turn her business into


illegitimate one. TRANSLATION: If I can, I want to register my business


so it becomes a legal entity. That way, I can get a bank loan easily,


but I don't know how to do that. Most in donations never even have


the chance to think that big. -- most Indonesians. This 21-year-old


had big dreams, like so many of his peers, when he first got to Jakarta


five years ago. But he didn't have the right qualifications, so


couldn't get a job. Now he sells magazines at traffic junctions to


make ends meet. TRANSLATION: I wanted to do work that fits my


skills, not like this. I want to get a real job, but I only have an


elementary school education, so it is impossible to stop this is an


exceptionally young country. the full potential of Indonesia's


youth isn't being recognised. The challenge for Indonesia is to tap


this bought -- a huge source of talent to ensure that young people


here get a -- shot at making it in life.


For more insight into the global informal economy, we can speak to


Robert Neuwirth, altar of Stealth of Nations - the Global Rise of the


Informal Economy, first of all, could you give us the epic scale of


the informal economy across the world? Well, it is huge. The


statistics are that more than one half of the working people in the


world work of the box and in the informal economy. -- Off the Box.


This is legal product been dealt with in an unregistered way. In


total, that amounts to 10 trillion dollars of economic activity, so if


the informal economy was organised as a nation state, it would be his


second largest in the world. But of course it is not. Should we regard


the size of the informal economy as a fundamental negative for the


world? The people in it are not paying tax, their work is not being


regulated, conditions can be appalling, is this a negative?


would flip it around and say that it is a negative on the way that


the formal economy works, that half the workers of the world are shut


out from it. We need to look at this sector of the economic


activity of the world as tarnishing its growth potential, and looking


at how we can make it a positive for the world. You have spent a


couple of years living in different parts of the world, a study in the


informal economy up close. Is it your conclusion that people within


the shadow economy would like to move into the official economy?


Only if it makes sense. It is a question of profit margins. If it


makes sense to become a registered Corporation, Shaw, but if not, and


they can expand their business without getting registered, then


people are content to what we call the shadows. But it is not a


shadowy realm, they are doing business openly on the streets, so


we're not talking about some clandestine opening -- underground.


We are talking about honest entrepreneurship. The question is,


how can we encourage them to grow their businesses in ways that help


the nation's? There is no doubt that criminal enterprises also does


eat away inside this informal sector. You talk about a 10


trillion dollar industry, what proportion of that is involved with


criminal or underground activity? In reality, none of it. The


statistics I am using scream out actual criminality, drug dealing,


arms dealing, so those criminal networks are not included -- screen


out. They would be another former quadrillion, perhaps. But there are


legal people are the mass of this, so to talk about criminality is a


canard. A what proportion of the people in this industry, roughly,


are working in conditions that we, in the official economy, would


regard as completely unacceptable? That is a very difficult


calculation to make. I don't really know, but I can tell you that in


the developing world, many of the formal but it is also don't have


the social security predictions, unemployment protection, but we


take for granted here. So it is hard to argue that people are being


exploited in the informal economy, when the formal economy exploits


people as well. Thank you are joining us.


The controversial British-born author and journalist Christopher


Hitchens has died at the age of 62 after a long and public battle with


cancer. He began his career in Britain as a left-wing journalist,


but later moved to New York and angered many of his former allies


by supporting the US invasion of Iraq.


Christopher Hitchens was a provocative bigger, describing


himself as an essayist and contrarian. An author of 17 box, he


was an atheist and alcoholic. -- 17 blogs. Diagnosed with cancer last


year, he spoke to Newsnight about his declining health. I am afraid


of a sordid death, afraid that I would die in an ugly or squalid way.


Cancer can be very pitiless in that. I feel a sense of waste about it,


because I am not ready. I feel a sense of betrayal to my family.


began his career in Britain, moving to New York in the 1980s. His death


was announced by Vanity Fair, where he worked as a contributing editor.


One of those who did know him was the deputy prime minister, Nick


Clegg, who worked for him as an intern. He said Christopher


Hitchens was infuriating and brilliant, and that he will be


massively missed by everyone who values strong opinions and great


writing. We can speak now to the director of


a documentary about Christopher Hitchens. He is joining us from


Calcutta. You were a friend, collaborator, just tell me, what is


your overriding memory of Christopher Hitchens? Generosity.


Generosity and largeness, unfortunately, in many ways! A lust


for life. His was a life well and truly lived. Well lived, in the


sense that his experience was extremely wide and deep. Truly


lived in the sense that he didn't suffer fools gladly, he didn't po


party lines, he thought for himself. Fiercely independent thinking was


all important to him. I called him a contrarian earlier in the


programme, did he actively relish generating a huge amount of


argument and heat? Yes, I think he did. And there was a very poor


formative aspect to him. -- perform. I considered setting up a debate


between him and George Galloway in the Albert Hall, which would have


been done. He did court that to an extent, but he was always sincere


in his positions. I think very rare are the occasions when he inflated


Stephen Sackur presents international news and intelligent analysis going live to the heart of the day's top global story. Plus up-to-the-minute global business news.

Featuring exclusive reports from BBC World News correspondents based around the world, plus up-to-the-minute global business news.

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