11/11/2011 Newsnight


11/11/2011

With Kirsty Wark. What is really happening in the Syrian flashpoint Homs? Newsnight has fresh footage of life inside the beleagured city.


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From Arab Spring to European fall, in parts of the Middle East they

:00:09.:00:13.

are making steps towards democracy, while this week in Europe,

:00:13.:00:21.

technocrats are electing leaders. Does the right of Lucas Papademos

:00:21.:00:25.

in -- rise of Lucas Papademos in Greece, show that European

:00:25.:00:30.

democracy can't hand the british. Our diplomatic editors are there

:00:30.:00:36.

with their take on the dramatic week in the eurozone.

:00:36.:00:41.

Across the country millions fell silent to mark Armistice Day. Is

:00:41.:00:44.

the poppy now a political symbol as much as a symbol of the fallen. We

:00:44.:00:49.

will discuss if there is a better way to honour the dead. We will

:00:49.:00:59.
:00:59.:01:05.

read experts of Siegfried Sasson's unearthed poem. Stars flung forth

:01:05.:01:10.

to lead you in the light. Good evening, perhaps it is because

:01:10.:01:15.

Europe appears to be lurching from one crisis to the next, when

:01:15.:01:23.

something truly seismic happens we approach it with something

:01:23.:01:25.

approaching souscience. Two democratically elected leaders were

:01:25.:01:31.

flung out for failing and replaced with two unelected techno crafts.

:01:31.:01:36.

While Egypt is busy embracing the world of democracy. It is a

:01:36.:01:43.

topscyture vee world where democracy seems to be eroding, our

:01:43.:01:53.
:01:53.:01:59.

diplomatic editor, Mark Urban reports. We saw the Arab Spring,

:01:59.:02:03.

where people rose up to get rid of old men in favour of democracy. Now

:02:03.:02:07.

we have the European autumn, which involves pushing aside democratic

:02:07.:02:14.

leaders in favour of unelected old leaders in favour of unelected old

:02:14.:02:17.

men? I think one parallel that seems to have emerged between parts

:02:17.:02:20.

of the Middle East and Europe. We have had leaders not telling the

:02:20.:02:26.

truth, trying to cosset their population in fake stories about

:02:26.:02:30.

the Promised Land in the future. course, this is painting with very

:02:30.:02:35.

broad brush strokes, just three out of a couple of dozen Arab

:02:36.:02:39.

leaderships have been overthrown by revolutions so far. Just Greece has

:02:39.:02:43.

appointed one of those grey unelected men as Prime Minister,

:02:43.:02:51.

with Italy probably about to do so too, out of 26EU countries. But

:02:51.:02:58.

there is a deeper point -- 27 EU countries. There is a point of

:02:58.:03:03.

discontent sweepg across Europe, discontent with politics, sharpened

:03:03.:03:12.

by the forces of global recession. As for either type of change

:03:12.:03:15.

delivering, we are not sure. Egypt is still ruled by a military

:03:15.:03:19.

Government, and plenty of people are frustrated by the slow pace of

:03:19.:03:25.

reform. But elections will happen soon in Egypt, and have gone well

:03:25.:03:31.

enough in Tunisia. So there Maysoon be democratic leaders, struggling

:03:31.:03:35.

to match the 5-6% economic growth managed in the latter days of

:03:35.:03:41.

President Mubarak. As for Europe, there are already

:03:41.:03:44.

many happy to argue that the last thing Greece or Italy needs is an

:03:44.:03:50.

election right now. Better to get austerity measures

:03:50.:03:57.

through parliament, as happened in Italy today. The calculation seems

:03:57.:04:03.

to be that unelected men like Lucas Papademos, swoorn in with his new

:04:03.:04:08.

unity Government today, -- swoorn in with his new unity Government

:04:08.:04:17.

today, can swoot bankers, if they - - sooth bankers. It maybe this

:04:17.:04:23.

generates anger with the unelected arbiters of a nation's future. How

:04:24.:04:28.

to retain support when the markets, social media or news channels all

:04:28.:04:34.

seem to focus unhappiness or fear and amplify it. When it comes to

:04:34.:04:39.

enhancing positive emotions or enabling change, those forces seem

:04:39.:04:45.

to operate less effectively. So if a leader, as charasmatic as

:04:45.:04:49.

President Obama, can get terrible approval ratings, and they have

:04:49.:04:54.

been pretty bad recently, in this climate of recession, the question,

:04:54.:04:59.

can any democratic leader hold on to his or her popularity in this

:04:59.:05:05.

recession would seem to be, no they can. I think leaders will stand a

:05:05.:05:12.

chance, right now I think people are not ideolgical about their

:05:12.:05:14.

leaders. We have a potential socialist with a good chance of

:05:14.:05:17.

winning an election in France. You have a right-wing Government with a

:05:17.:05:20.

good chance in Spain. It is not right or left, it is give me

:05:20.:05:24.

competence, give me a Government that can get us through this moment

:05:24.:05:27.

of panic, then we will worry about the fuen tuning of whether you are

:05:27.:05:33.

more in favour of -- fine tuning of whether you are more in favour of

:05:33.:05:38.

spending or the market. In this European autumn, it is hard to

:05:38.:05:42.

imagine an electorate surging into a more optimistic mood at any time.

:05:42.:05:46.

The best we can hope for, politically, is the absence of

:05:46.:05:51.

complaint. Mark Urban is here with Paul Mason.

:05:51.:05:55.

Paul, the overall, the overarching idea here is that the economic

:05:55.:05:59.

crisis brought a complete change to the nature of power, and who

:05:59.:06:04.

actually exercise it is? It is not shocking to see this rather strange

:06:04.:06:09.

sequence of crisis, bailout, imposed austerity package, and then

:06:09.:06:14.

election to decide who implements it. We saw this in Ireland and

:06:14.:06:17.

Portugal. There are elements of it in Italy and Greece. The shocking

:06:17.:06:22.

thing was to see other Governments, avertly involved in the overthrow.

:06:23.:06:26.

Specifically with Greece, but also with Italy, in the case of Angela

:06:26.:06:30.

Merkel, who rang the Italian President, could ask could there be

:06:30.:06:33.

a different Government. There is that, there is the underlying

:06:33.:06:37.

economics of it are, that the economic orthodoxy of an entire

:06:37.:06:40.

generation of politicians seems to be failing. They don't know what to

:06:40.:06:45.

do. One looks them in the eye in Cannes and Brussels and all the

:06:45.:06:50.

other various venues, you tend to see a slight absence of belief in

:06:50.:06:53.

themselves. An absence of belief in themselves, mirrored with the idea

:06:53.:06:58.

that somebody like Angela Merkel has to impose herself on Europe.

:06:58.:07:03.

Yes, and it is interesting to see it from a UK perspective. Every

:07:03.:07:08.

nation look at this there their own prism, the UK is be careful what

:07:08.:07:11.

you look for. George Osborne and David Cameron have been urging on

:07:11.:07:14.

the Central Bank, tighter fiscal union, more discipline, but this is

:07:14.:07:19.

what it can look like. What we have seen this week, toppling of

:07:19.:07:21.

Governments, putting unelected people in. To the Euro-sceptic part

:07:21.:07:27.

of those same Conservative leaders is repugnant, and heightens this

:07:27.:07:34.

disconnect between the measures needed to pay the -- pave the

:07:34.:07:37.

economic position, and the legitimacy of the project.

:07:37.:07:41.

legitimacy is what suffers, does national politics, national

:07:41.:07:45.

Government sufrbgs or does the European project suffer -- suffer,

:07:45.:07:49.

or does the European project suffer at the end of this? Mario Monti,

:07:50.:07:55.

only made a senator two days a nod not even nominated yet, we believe

:07:55.:07:59.

he will be the replacement for Berlusconi, he buys them time.

:07:59.:08:03.

Italy isn't in a death spiral. They have had a premier who lacked, for

:08:03.:08:08.

the markets, credibility, Greece, is in a social crisis. Greece a

:08:08.:08:12.

month ago saw the communist party militia squad defending the

:08:12.:08:17.

parliament against the anarchists, this is not the Europe that Olli

:08:17.:08:20.

Rehn thinks he's running. That is the problem for them. They have

:08:20.:08:25.

very little take on what to do about it. Even the technocrats, I

:08:25.:08:29.

would argue. Also in the film there, your interviewee was talking about

:08:29.:08:34.

the change again likely in future elections in France and in Spain.

:08:34.:08:39.

And a different configuration? was saying people were being non-

:08:39.:08:43.

ideolgical in Europe, listening to him, I was thinking, no, they are

:08:43.:08:47.

just against the incumbent. Whoever that is. That is part of this huge

:08:47.:08:49.

discontent with established political orders, that whoever you

:08:49.:08:53.

are, you will get caned in the current crisis. We were talking

:08:53.:08:57.

about the way that both Cameron and Osbourne had approached this,

:08:57.:09:01.

obviously the Euro-sceptics here in the backbenches. But there was lsz

:09:01.:09:06.

a move in Europe that is Britain- sceptic. You can clearly pick that

:09:06.:09:10.

up whenever you have contact with European politicians. The Brits, we

:09:10.:09:14.

are coming up to the autumn statement. The well laid plans, the

:09:14.:09:18.

best laid plans to rebalance our economy, and to cut our deficit, I

:09:18.:09:23.

think, as we speak, being redrawn. They have to be. We don't even know

:09:23.:09:28.

how bad the, if we get the worst case scenario, an Italian debt

:09:28.:09:31.

crisis, we don't know how bad the European credit crunch will be. It

:09:31.:09:35.

could spoil everybody's plan. do you think this looks in Europe

:09:35.:09:40.

from the Arab world? I can't say. We should really ask someone in

:09:40.:09:44.

Cairo or Tripoli tonight. What is apparent when you are there, is

:09:44.:09:48.

there is enormous enthusiasm, there is grass roots belief in democracy.

:09:48.:09:52.

When you actually look at how it can be applied in those countries,

:09:52.:09:55.

people are less sure. They have had 42 years of dictatorship in Libya,

:09:55.:10:00.

they have had very, very oppressive systems. As the challenges come up

:10:00.:10:04.

of trying to run these election, we have seen all sorts of curious

:10:04.:10:08.

rules put in by the military in Egypt, trying to make it work and

:10:08.:10:11.

then trying to deliver practical Government. It is possible that the

:10:11.:10:15.

coalitions that overthrew those dictators can fracture under that

:10:15.:10:18.

pressure. To discuss further where the

:10:18.:10:23.

turmoil of this week might lead, I'm joined by the French-born

:10:24.:10:29.

journalist, who covered the Arab Spring, by the Conservative MP Rory

:10:29.:10:35.

Stuart, who returned from Libya, and the person who helped draw up

:10:35.:10:38.

the Lisbon Treaty. Picking up straight away on the

:10:38.:10:43.

whole question of how this looks, funnily enough, from the three

:10:43.:10:49.

countries merging into democracies? This null liberated country, like

:10:50.:10:53.

Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, they are way behind, necessarily, in their

:10:53.:10:59.

expressions of democracy. In fact, they are still trying to establish

:10:59.:11:02.

democracy. The Tunisia model, they have staged elections recently. I

:11:02.:11:06.

think that gives us hope for the future of the region. But nothing

:11:06.:11:11.

more than that. As we know, gunmen are not just the army, they are

:11:11.:11:17.

still very much in charge of Egypt and Libya. And the Libyans are

:11:17.:11:23.

aware that their own revolution succeeded through the immense fire

:11:23.:11:28.

power of NATO, and it had nothing to do with that. Looking now, at

:11:28.:11:33.

how this all looks, in Europe, it looks, funnily enough, of course,

:11:33.:11:36.

that democracy, certainly the way it is being exercised in Italy and

:11:36.:11:40.

Greece, simply isn't up to the task, or the financial crisis that Europe

:11:40.:11:45.

finds itself in, or the global financial crisis? You are rather

:11:45.:11:48.

assuming that the structures within the European Union, and

:11:48.:11:50.

particularly in relation to the eurozone, were democratic in the

:11:51.:11:53.

sense as we understand them. An ability to change the Government,

:11:53.:11:57.

if you no longer like what the current Government does. The one

:11:57.:12:00.

thing we should never underestimate is the ability of genuine

:12:01.:12:04.

democracies to recover, and they have resilience. The deep malaise

:12:04.:12:09.

which we are seeing at the moment, is that politically elite of 17

:12:09.:12:13.

countries, particularly led by two big ones, holding on to a model

:12:13.:12:16.

that simply doesn't work. The people who have to pay the price

:12:16.:12:20.

for that, those countries in the periphery, like Greece, Portugal

:12:20.:12:24.

and Spain, that are liquid. fact is that politics isn't up to

:12:24.:12:27.

the economics, if you want to put it that way in these countries.

:12:27.:12:32.

Therefore, putting in a technocrat essentially is an erosion of

:12:32.:12:36.

democracy? It is a righteous erosion of democracy. The answer is

:12:36.:12:40.

to recognise that the 17 countries currently within the eurozone are

:12:40.:12:43.

not economies that can function together. If the politicians were

:12:43.:12:47.

really serious about resolving the problem, they would start by

:12:47.:12:50.

drawing up plans that would allow some countries to restore

:12:50.:12:54.

competitiveness, like Greece, and be allowed to leave the euro to do

:12:54.:12:59.

that. On Europe, first, before we turn to look at the Arab Spring.

:12:59.:13:04.

There is the possibility, obviously you can make an algs at the Arab

:13:04.:13:07.

Spring and say there is the domino effect. You could say in Europe we

:13:07.:13:11.

are not free of the domino effect in this crisis at all, are we?

:13:11.:13:15.

course Italy is a much more serious threat in that way than Greece. But

:13:15.:13:18.

I think we are still on the first phase of things. There is still a

:13:19.:13:22.

very good chance at the moment that things can settle down and Europe

:13:22.:13:25.

can muddle through. Despite the fact that European populations are

:13:25.:13:29.

really angry. By and large, the parties in Europe, and the

:13:29.:13:38.

Governments in Europe remain pro- European. The If it continues, if

:13:38.:13:41.

Italy in crisis, something else may change, at the moment we are not

:13:41.:13:44.

there yet. It is interesting, it looks as if politicians in way are

:13:44.:13:49.

happy to sit back, and let the technocrats take the hit and sort

:13:50.:13:54.

this out. Which presumably is not a good day for politics? My own view

:13:54.:14:01.

is the realities of global economics do not sit happily with

:14:02.:14:05.

democratic principles. It is time for technocrats to fix the economic

:14:05.:14:08.

system, reassure the financial markets and to make sure the

:14:08.:14:13.

continent competes with growing economic powers houses, like China

:14:13.:14:18.

and India, for example. And on a purely practical level, I think it

:14:18.:14:23.

is quite impossible to organise elections at this time. But the

:14:23.:14:28.

point is, that what the electorate wants Governments to do, the

:14:28.:14:31.

markets, the traders won't let them do. There is a huge disconnect here,

:14:32.:14:35.

isn't it, it would seem the market, the people who call the shots on

:14:35.:14:41.

the markets end up with the upperhand? I'm shocked to hear an

:14:41.:14:47.

argument that says technocrats need to take over because we can't trust

:14:47.:14:52.

the people. It is exact low in times like this you need to trust

:14:52.:14:56.

in the recovery of democracies. Hold on, what got us into the

:14:57.:15:00.

trouble, were the very technocrats, that didn't face up to economic

:15:00.:15:04.

realities, who thought politicians could override markets. They caused

:15:04.:15:07.

the problem, and now they are portraying themselves to be the

:15:07.:15:10.

solution. I think this is great opportunity for politicians.

:15:10.:15:14.

Because at the moment the public is divided. If you look at the Greek

:15:14.:15:17.

population, they don't want to leave the eurozone, 80% of Greeks

:15:17.:15:22.

want to stay in the eurozone. But 80% of Greeks don't want the reform

:15:22.:15:27.

package. That is the classic area for politicians. A technocrat on

:15:27.:15:31.

its own won't solve that problem. The technocrat is having to solve

:15:31.:15:34.

the problems, because neither the Government in Italy or Greece were

:15:34.:15:40.

sufficient to the task? In the end I don't believe that is sustainable.

:15:40.:15:43.

Agree with the point there. Politicians need to explain to

:15:44.:15:47.

people what's happening U need to sit down with the Greek people and

:15:47.:15:57.
:15:57.:15:58.

say you can't have it both ways. You can't lurch from populisim to

:15:58.:16:01.

technocratcy. Although the Papandreou's referendum was madness

:16:01.:16:05.

it was understandable, you have to engage with the people. If you

:16:05.:16:11.

don't engage with the people there is a huge A discontent. Then we

:16:11.:16:16.

have -- a huge amount of discontent. We have had huge demonstrations in

:16:16.:16:21.

Greece, not the same as Tarango Syntagma Sqare, but where can

:16:21.:16:26.

discon-- Tahir Syntagma Sqare, but where can discontent lead.

:16:26.:16:36.
:16:36.:16:43.

reality within the -- the messages put across by Twitter and Facebook

:16:43.:16:48.

were far more important than the politicians' points. The hands of

:16:48.:16:51.

the economy is very much in the hands of the money people, they are

:16:51.:16:56.

far more influential than the politicians. You don't hold any

:16:56.:16:59.

more influence? Politicians set the framework, democracy is the

:16:59.:17:04.

framework within which the people express their collective will.

:17:04.:17:08.

Politicians represent the people, and I really do think that we need

:17:08.:17:11.

to trust those democracies. Just to come back y is Greece in the

:17:11.:17:18.

trouble it is in. Because some politicians allowed Greece to come

:17:18.:17:21.

in and join on the terms which were wrong and everybody knew. That that

:17:21.:17:25.

is the root of the crisis, not democracy. I'm not saying we should

:17:25.:17:29.

not trust people. Absolutely not. I'm saying at a particular time,

:17:29.:17:32.

when we are faced with a crisis, it is unwise to go to the country.

:17:32.:17:37.

This idea that President Sarkozy can sort the whole mess out over

:17:37.:17:41.

dinner with Angela Merkel is absolutely ludicrous.

:17:41.:17:45.

Where does it leave Britain? Britain needs to be very careful.

:17:45.:17:49.

Wherever this is going, Britain's interests are the stability of our

:17:49.:17:53.

economy and the stability of Europe. We need to try to help Europe to

:17:53.:17:57.

settle down. We have to recognise that this isn't the moment to be

:17:57.:18:00.

talking about Britain's in and out. It is about stablising the economy

:18:00.:18:04.

and helping Europe to stablise. It is also, just to come back to this

:18:04.:18:09.

conversation we are having, it can't be about bankers and

:18:09.:18:12.

technocrats weighing in to Greece and Italy, telling the people. We

:18:12.:18:17.

have seen the IMF do that all over the world, it is a disaster. A

:18:17.:18:23.

backlash will follow, people won't put up with it. We have seen it in

:18:23.:18:26.

2008, there was nominal anger at Gordon Brown's Government. But the

:18:26.:18:30.

real outrage was really reserved at financial institutions and indeed

:18:30.:18:36.

banks who had gambled away the fortunes. Thank you all very much.

:18:37.:18:41.

Millions of people fell silent at 11.00am today, marking the moments

:18:41.:18:44.

the guns stopped firing on the Western Front in 1918, many, many

:18:44.:18:48.

more are wearing a poppy as a mark of respect for those who died then,

:18:48.:18:53.

and in wars and conflicts since. But has the poppy become more than

:18:53.:18:58.

a token of remembrance and respect. David Cameron insisted this week

:18:58.:19:02.

the poppy transcends politics, it is not an issue of left nor right,

:19:02.:19:06.

nor even if someone is in favour origins a particular war. Can that

:19:06.:19:15.

be right? We will discuss that in a moment, first here's Steven Smith.

:19:15.:19:18.

The poppy has been associated with combat and sacrifice since the

:19:18.:19:22.

Great War. This week it seems to have been at the centre of a

:19:22.:19:31.

political and cultural battlefield. On remembersance day, newly

:19:31.:19:35.

restored footage of the Battle of the Somme, from the imperial war

:19:35.:19:40.

new seem, and a previously undiscovered verse by the Great War

:19:40.:19:47.

poet, Siegfried Sasson. "you in the winds ride out together. Your

:19:47.:19:50.

company the world's great weather. The clouds your plume, the

:19:50.:19:56.

glittering sky a host of swords in harmony with the whole lovelyness

:19:56.:20:00.

of light, flung forth to lead you through the fight". Siegfried

:20:00.:20:06.

Sasson found it very difficult to give us ideal of war, his ideal of

:20:06.:20:14.

the glory of war, the shivery of fighting, link that goes back to

:20:14.:20:24.
:20:24.:20:26.

legend, he found it very difficult indeed to do this. In Afghanistan

:20:26.:20:30.

the Defence Secretary laid a wreath of poppies.

:20:30.:20:36.

There, and all over the qu., a two minutes silence was -- UK, a two

:20:36.:20:44.

minutes silence was observed. England's footballers will play

:20:44.:20:49.

Spain at Wembley tomorrow, wearing poppies, after a diplomatic

:20:49.:20:53.

incident, involving world's footballs leaders, as well as

:20:53.:20:55.

Prince William and the Prime Minister. As the players, we do a

:20:55.:20:59.

lot of work with the military boys. You will see a lot of them here,

:20:59.:21:03.

and at every England game. If we were running out and not showing

:21:03.:21:07.

our respects in way we would be letting them down. It has emerged

:21:07.:21:12.

that the row was diffused thanks to a Tory MP, who is also a qualified

:21:12.:21:16.

referee. He looked up the rules and found a loophole, permitting

:21:16.:21:21.

symbols on armbands. It is not a political symbol. It is a sil

:21:21.:21:26.

symbol of remembrance. It is also a symbol of respect for those serving

:21:26.:21:29.

the country at this current time. Once you have spent a couple of

:21:29.:21:33.

minutes explaining what the poppy means to your average Brit,

:21:33.:21:39.

everybody gets it, they know it is not political.

:21:39.:21:45.

Not far from the sen staff in Whitehall, 17 -- Cenotaph, in

:21:45.:21:49.

Whitehall, 170 supporters of the right-wing English Defence League

:21:49.:21:53.

were arrested, to prevent a breach of the peace. They were reportedly

:21:53.:21:57.

planning to go to St Paul's, the site of an anti-capitalist camp.

:21:57.:22:02.

Last year EDL supporters clashed with police on Remembrance Day,

:22:02.:22:06.

after members of a banned extremist group set fire to poppies. For some,

:22:06.:22:11.

who insist on the poppy, as well as for others who are more equivocal,

:22:11.:22:17.

the emblems become political. is it not possible to just give

:22:17.:22:20.

money to The Royal British Legion and not wear a poppy. Because they

:22:20.:22:24.

have become de facto, compulsory, it seems absurd that we have to

:22:24.:22:28.

wear them now. It has become compulsory. I think really, if I

:22:28.:22:31.

just took this poppy off, that would become a political statement,

:22:31.:22:35.

that would be absurd. I have more than one jacket. Do I have to buy a

:22:35.:22:38.

poppy for every jacket, do I have to remember to bring it wherever I

:22:38.:22:46.

It is reported tonight that there have been record sales of poppies.

:22:46.:22:50.

Perhaps because of the controversy surrounding them. Or perhaps, in

:22:50.:22:59.

spite of it. There will be another chance to

:22:59.:23:09.
:23:09.:23:10.

hear a discussion of the newly discussed Sigfreid Sasson's poetry

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tomorrow. I'm joined by my guests now. Do you

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detect a change in atmosphere about the poppy? I think it is becoming

:23:19.:23:22.

an almost compulsory thing. I think it is a great shame. It should be a

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matter of choice. What it means is that, once a year, we give some

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money to the British Legion, which does a tremendous amount of work

:23:30.:23:33.

for servicemen who are injured and fall on hard times, we remember all

:23:33.:23:37.

the people that we, the country, have sent off to get killed, in all

:23:37.:23:44.

wars. We say, thanks, chaps, and chappesss, we haven't forgotten you.

:23:44.:23:48.

That is what it means. It mustn't be a symbol to posture on.

:23:48.:23:52.

totally agree on that, when you make it compulsory, it robs the

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symbol of the power, the power is in the voluntary wearing of it and

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making statement. The poppy has always been political. I'm wearing

:23:59.:24:05.

a white poppy, going back to the 1920s and 1930s, women losing

:24:05.:24:09.

fathers and sons, approached the red poppies and said will you make

:24:09.:24:14.

a commitment to peace, President Clinton no more -- print no more

:24:14.:24:17.

war on the poppies, we think that is how those who died would want to

:24:17.:24:21.

be remembered. Surely it is a life lost in vain, if we don't make the

:24:21.:24:25.

commitment. They said no. Clearly there are values. Even when David

:24:25.:24:30.

Cameron made his statement saying the poppy is not a political symbol,

:24:30.:24:34.

in the next breath he said it is about the pride of the nation state.

:24:34.:24:38.

He made a political statement afterwards. Is it about the pride

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of the nation state? Partly, there is nothing political about being

:24:41.:24:44.

proud of what you are and what you have done. Do you think, actually,

:24:44.:24:48.

because there is a change in the atmosphere about the poppy, it is

:24:49.:24:53.

becoming almost compulsory, that people should actually have

:24:53.:24:56.

different symbols for certain conflicts. People know about the

:24:56.:25:00.

poppy at school, because it is really originally about the First

:25:00.:25:04.

World War, and extends to the Second World War, do you think

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there is a difference. Everybody gives their life in battle, we must

:25:08.:25:12.

remember them, do you think there is other conflicts and other

:25:12.:25:16.

remembrance for other conflicts? think the nice thing about the

:25:16.:25:19.

poppy is it remembers all those who died. Actually now, the other

:25:19.:25:24.

people who have died, not just the world wars. The British Legion says

:25:25.:25:29.

it is only about the soldiers, it makes a valued judgment, it says

:25:29.:25:33.

those who have laid down their lives for our freedom. Framed by

:25:33.:25:37.

World War I, and every conflict subsequently has to fit into the

:25:37.:25:40.

framing. Many people won't leave that soldiers in Afghanistan,

:25:40.:25:45.

whilst respecting them, in Iraq, and Northern Ireland, have laid

:25:45.:25:48.

down their lives for our freedom, and they are asked to make the

:25:48.:25:53.

judgment by wearing the poppy. Most people don't, but that is what the

:25:53.:25:57.

legion says. It doesn't ma if you agree with the war or not, but you

:25:57.:26:01.

the country have sent them off to die. And therefore, you should

:26:01.:26:04.

remember them. Whether you approve of the war or not is irrelevant. Do

:26:04.:26:08.

you approve of the man who has gone out and died, possibly for a cause

:26:08.:26:13.

he didn't agree w but nevertheless it is we who have sent them out to

:26:13.:26:17.

die. Would you wear a white poppy? I probably wouldn't, I don't have

:26:17.:26:23.

any objection to a white poppy. I think it is a bit like wearing a

:26:23.:26:27.

little ball of leather in the hope that England will win the World Cup

:26:27.:26:31.

rugby, but knowing they won't. In the real world we will always have

:26:31.:26:35.

conflict. That is interesting aspect about both the pass visit

:26:35.:26:39.

tradition and the just war tradition, both see war as evil, in

:26:39.:26:44.

the just war you say it is a lesser evil than the alternative. There is

:26:44.:26:48.

broader issue about who you remember about the poppy, the red

:26:48.:26:51.

poppy son-in-law about Armed Forces and our Armed Forces, it is not

:26:51.:26:55.

about civilians and people who have killed. Harry Patch, just before he

:26:56.:27:00.

died, went to lay a wreath on German graves. He said remembrance

:27:00.:27:05.

must be about his quote, "people on both sides of the line". Absolutely,

:27:05.:27:10.

I think we would all do that. I was in Normandy, I laid a wreath and

:27:10.:27:14.

said it was not just for our soldiers but the German dead.

:27:14.:27:19.

has been politicised by the EDL, last year and this year. It is very

:27:19.:27:24.

hard, isn't it, once they have a grasp of that, how do you move

:27:24.:27:27.

away? Ignore them, they are lunatics and dangerous, just as

:27:28.:27:35.

dangerous as the people who want to ban poppies. Ignore them. If you

:27:35.:27:40.

make them important they become important. Has it become jingositic

:27:40.:27:45.

where it was never meant to be? have no problem with jingoism, if

:27:45.:27:50.

somebody wants to make it that, that doesn't mean it is right, you

:27:50.:27:53.

ignore them. It has become associated, from the Prime

:27:53.:27:57.

Minister's mouth, nationalism, you can say it is good or bad, but it

:27:57.:28:01.

has. You can see in Northern Ireland the association with

:28:01.:28:04.

Protestant loyalism. For Catholics in Northern Ireland it is a

:28:04.:28:08.

difficult symbol to embrace. I don't think we understand in the

:28:08.:28:11.

controversy around FIFA that it doesn't have the international

:28:11.:28:15.

recognition. In some places it isn't recognised and other places a

:28:15.:28:19.

negative symbol. I asked if it is time for a different symbol to

:28:19.:28:22.

remember different conflicts. We are going into a new century, it

:28:22.:28:27.

will be 100 years in 2017, a Sunday in 2017, Armistice. Do you think it

:28:27.:28:32.

will be a time to move on and create a new symbol for conflict?

:28:32.:28:37.

would like to see, 100 flowers flourish and let many symbols come

:28:37.:28:41.

forward. When I suggested this a few years ago that churches should

:28:41.:28:44.

make white poppies available alongside red poppies, it was

:28:44.:28:47.

treated with quite a lot of controversy, let's say, in the

:28:47.:28:53.

press and media. But I think we do need to have more inclusive

:28:53.:28:58.

remembrance, we have migrant communities might be uncomfortable,

:28:58.:29:02.

they might have relatives killed by British forces. We have people

:29:02.:29:09.

producing purple poppies there are war memorials to animals and

:29:09.:29:12.

conscientious objectors who have only got recognition. And also

:29:12.:29:15.

about the language, one more point, we need to recognise that people

:29:15.:29:20.

did die in vain, that death isn't glorious, moderating the language.

:29:20.:29:24.

They didn't die in vain, they died because we sent them off to die, we

:29:24.:29:28.