17/11/2011 Newsnight


Analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines with Emily Maitlis. Who are the Free Syrian Army, and do they stand a real chance of deposing President Assad?

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Tonight, armed insurrection in Syria, how close is the country to


outright civil war? President Assad's opponents have


weapons and man power, but are they anything like strong enough to


bring him down. One of the few journalists to operate undercover


in Syria, examines who the Free Syria Army are.


Nearly 200 are arrested as The Oxford Murders Wall Street group


march on New York, what will the movement change? We will hear from


a supporter in New York a former Goldman Sachs banker. After the


insults, accusations and the crass interventions of the FIFA chief. We


examine whether English football really does have a problem with


racism. I had a letter from Crystal Palace, it said we don't want any


black people here, stay away but "N", we have a bullet for you.


Scientists can work out which events are caused by global warming,


and how it could all end up in the courts.


Is Syria on the brink of civil war? After months of Government


oppression, the fightback has started in ernest. The Free Syrian


Army is taking on as an opposition force and means business, and


crucially is able to use military force against President Assad's


forces. Nobody knows about the group, who funds it, who are the


members, and will it be able to overthrow the dictator whose


dynasty has clung on to power in this state for decades. Sue Lloyd-


Roberts is one of the few journalists who has worked


undercover in the country, here is her report.


It had been business as usual in Syria today, demonstrations taking


place throughout the country, the army opening fire, and an ever-


increasing death toll. After the last bloody few days, the number of


dead is now greater than the 3,500 announced by the United Nations


last week. In Homs, the so-called capital of


the revolution, tanks and heavy weapons have continued to bombard


civilian areas. And many have been killed, even after, angry


condemnation from Syria's neighbours and beyond. Since I


reported from Homs four weeks ago, where I was able to mingle freely


with the demonstrators, the situation has deteriorated


dramatically. With the recent new international condemnation, people


are beginning to talk about the beginning of the end of the


Government of Bashar al-Assad. But if that is the case, how will the


regime be toppled? What will take its place? The nature of the


protest has been altered by a now defiant and widespread armed


resistance. The newly formed Free Syrian Army, claim to number


between 10,000-15,000, they post their defections and alleged


victories on YouTube. The odd tank seized from the regular army, and


in their boldest move yet, yesterday an attack on an army


intelligence base near Damascus. They are getting weapons smuggled


in from Lebanon. I put to their leader that daily defections is one


thing, but military experts say they can't make a real impact,


until they get a tank division come over to their side. TRANSLATION:


until now we have only been small groups of defectors from army units,


there hasn't been anything bigger, as you say, because we do not have


a secure area where we can keep tanks. If we had a buffer zone, we


would see defections on a bigger scale. REPORTER: What legitimacy do


you have, the regime would say you are a rebel trait rouse army?


TRANSLATION: It is far as the Syrian people are concerned, the


Syrian regime is the illegitimate one, we earned our legitimacy from


the street and demonstrations. In all demonstrations now you can see


people support the Free Syrian Army. The demonstrations appear to be


increasing in number around the country and they are becoming


bolder and more inclusive. Today we see many more women, students and


children joining the protest. The regime has always claimed that the


big cities, like Damascus, have not so far joined in, in big numbers.


When I spoke to a local opposition leader in Damascus today, she


denied this. Many areas inside Damascus witnessed huge


demonstrations. Many people filled in the places. Every day there is


daily protests in all these areas. Opposition leaders also claim that


the protest is uniting sectarian divisions in Syria. It is not just


the Sunni majority rebelling against President Assad's Alawites


elite. But they say Christians, and Kurds, all want to see the fall of


the regime. That says one Marionite Christian, living in neighbouring


Lebanon, is too simplified a story, there have been sectarian killings


by opposition groups, which bode ill for the future. We are also


witnessing some elements of civil war. You know Sue, and I think you


know we have witnessed many sectarian killings in Syria in the


last few weeks, civilians being killed. Both the regime and the


armed insurgency have carried out executions of civilians. So the


reality is we are seeing the beginning, but yet, if Syria


plunges into a prolonged conflict, there is a, I think, a likelihood,


that this particular armed conflict could take on sectarian and tribal


conotations, and basically spread into neighbouring countries. The


reason why millions of Syrians in Damascus and the areas have not


joined the protests so fashion they fear the morning after, they fear


Syria could go the Iraq and Lebanon way. I'm not the only one saying no


so. Millions of Syrians fear this political struggle could escalate


into all-out civil war. The Free Syrian Army is appealing to the


United Nations for more weapons, and a no-fly zone so they can


operate in it. How long do they give the dictator? TRANSLATION:


give it months, the army is struggling economically, and


soldiers are exhausted after eight months on the streets. That comes


from an army pleading for weapons for what they say could be a quick


solution to a problem that is beginning to frighten the outside


world. The word from the street, and from those living in


neighbouring countries, is that there is no immediate end in sight.


The reality is, I think, now, my take and I hope I am wrong, is that


Syria has reached a point of no return. Joining me now are two


Syrian opposition representatives, speaking for the Syrian National


Council, the leading coalition of Syrian opposition groups, joining


me from Paris, and a founding member of Building The Syrian State,


a separate opposition group. I want to start with you, why do


you remain outside what is seen by many as the best chance that Syria


has now of comprehensively overthrowing the regime? What do


you mean we are still outside? do you remain outside, you know,


the main Syrian National Council, which is seen as the body for doing


that? I think the Syrian opposition map is far more spread and complex


than just one single body in coalition. They are an important


player but not the only player. There are far more important ones


on the ground, inside Syria, those who are playing on the battleground.


These are the groups I support and I work with. I think they have a


better chance to evaluate where the balance of the forces is, and reach


the situation from inside. I respect their views. Their means


are more coming from inside. The solutions they put forward are


coming from inside Syria. We want it to be supported from the outside.


We are happy to work with the SNC, we don't necessarily have to join,


we can work on common plans. Why does the whole Syrian opposition


have to go under one umbrella. does it have to? Go under


unumbrelia, other places have been overthrown without coalitions.


that right you can have disparate groups and separate groups, you


don't need to be a unified opposition at this point? I think


it is a bit unfair to expect that there would be 100% of the


opposition standing together. However, I think the case in Syria


is different from Egypt and Tunisia, because of the complexties of


Syrian society, but also of the regional environment. For that


reason there is much anxiety inside the country and much anxiety among


neighbours, that things could go the wrong way, if the regime were


to go. I think the regime is today, the main responsible for the


direction that the issues, that the situation is taking on the ground,


and if we are speaking of risks of civil war, this is the


responsibility, this has been actively encouraged by the regime.


But we need an opposition, I think this is why we are working on


unifying ranks. We need an opposition that presents the


country, the people, those who are frightened, as well as the outside,


with an alternative. An alternative that says all of these political


groups have come together around one objective. This objective is


the overthrowing of the regime. get to that objective, sorry, is it


necessary to have armed force s that the only way you will do this?


Obviously I think what is happening on the ground is the absence of a


political plan, put forward by a strong, powerful, unified


opposition. This is what needs to be actively done, and this is what


is currently under way. The unification of ranks between the


main groups of the opposition, coming out with one joint objective,


but not only an objective, but also a road map. How to go about doing


that what are the concrete steps to take. What is the way forward for


the end of this regime. Understanding that this common


objective is what the street wants, is what the revolution, forces on


the ground, people on the ground are asking for the end of this


regime, the end of President Bashar al-Assad himself. The objectives


are clearly the same. What about the Free Syrian Army, what position


would they play in this? I can't determine their position.


asking this in the studio? I don't think I can determine their


position. I mean, you know, the army won't listen to me, won't


listen probably to other politicians. They have their own


tools, and means. We are trying to argue for a political process.


However, I would like to follow up on what was argued. I totally agree,


we need a road map to unite around. You promised studies, papers, two


months on, we haven't seen one single political paper issued by


the SNC, if there was something to unite around we could have united


around it. You promised a road map, we haven't heard back from you,


personally we sent e-mails we haven't heard yes and no, how with


can we unite when you don't respond to a discussion about a unified


plan. In the Libyan scenario, there was a clear forward case, there was


a military action, everyone got around that. There isn't a clear


way forward. That is a pretty strong allegation for the Syrian


National Council, that you don't have a game plan or way forward,


and you are not even responding to the kind of communication channels


open to you? The plan was put to me personally and I, as the Syrian


National Council, can cannot respond personally, it has no value


if I put forward a plan. A plan was put forward about three weeks ago


now. A programme and a vision of how to go about the transition


phase and the building of new institutions. There is a vision,


and there is a plan that was put out, and we may not have seen that,


if I can send it to her I will, after we finish this programme.


Just to say this programme was put forward, it obviously take as bit


longer than a small and coherent political group that came together


in Syria, the council is a coalition, do not forget that. The


coalition is all the political forces are there, the Islamists,


the secular, liberals and left- wingers, all of this needs time,


and that vision has now, is now on the table. Thank you very much.


They call themselves the 99 per cent, the protestors who have taken


to call street and attempted to march on the New York Stock


Exchange, calling for an end to the inequality that is seeing bankers,


the 1%, flourish at the expense of the rest of the population. They


have brought the skrisism of rich and poor and say it is getting


wider. Today dozens of Occupy Wall Street were arrested at a rally to


mark two months of demonstrations. The rally comes on the same day,


coincidently, that Northern Rock, the first bank to be nationalised


in Britain, was sold at a loss to the taxpayer of at least �400


million. Our economics editor is with me now. How are we to make


sense of the deal? The deal has to be understood in the context of


what happened on nationalisation. They split Northern Rock into and


good and bad bank. We have a graphic to explain it. The good


bank was sold today, this is the bit that is still trading and has


branches and looks for customers to Virgin Money. For about �1. ...well


it was told for �850 million and another �850 million for details.


The money the Government put into the bank was �1.4 billion, we can


say it is nearly a �400 million loss. The bad bank shows you where


the challenge is. There is about �45 billion of mortgages, these are


mortgages in some way distressed or not great, they didn't want to put


them in a good bit. That is propped up with �20 billion worth of UK


tax-payers' money, that in the last six months we know about to July


had rising arrears, rising danger of default among the mortgage


holders. One can't imagine it has got any better in the last six


months. We will only know what happens to our �20 billion when we


see what happens to the financial crisis. That, as we know, is not


over. It is funny, isn't it, each time we are asked to look ahead, is


there any sense in your mind that this marks the end of what was


started in 2007? We both covered that day, that Northern Rock went


bust, if you remember the people in the queues. Think about it, they


had seven years of rising house prices, they had four years of


rising stock markets, and that sounds like a reasonably long time


to get into the mind set of what can go wrong. We have now had four


years since Northern Rock went bust, we have had four unrelenting years


of crisis, what we know from every headline we see is it is not over.


We are expecting further trouble in the European banks, we are


expecting trouble in the European sovereign debt market. We are


expecting, there is a danger, let's not say expecting, there is a


danger that the world will stagnate, or parts of it go once again into


recession. This forms the context of what we are now seeing, which is


not queues of happyish but resigned people outside busted banks, but


what we are about to see. Which is, just coincidently, a whole bunch of


iconic images of protest that happened today that I think are


becoming the signature tune of 2011. If these were images from some


forlorn revolution, in some snaul small forgotten state, they would


be striking enough. But this was Portland Oregon today, and this


downtown Los Angeles, and on Wall Street, where the US protest


movement began, anger. Move, move! The Oxford Murders Wall Street


protestors marched on Wall Street, blocked the financial district, and


clashed with the police. A few on- looking bankers unimpressed. The


Twittersphere exploded, peoples per second dropping news, views and


accusations, too fast to follow. To an audience across the world, the


message behind it all, defiant. They can take the park, they can


arrest people, but they can't arrest an idea. But what is the


idea? The protestors have refused to engage with the game of


political programmes and demands. They have focused on grievances


against banks, against inequality, against the 1%. Now, those in power


are listening. This, the Senate Majority Leader. We know all that


has been said about the 1 how well they have been doing. -- 1%, how


well they are doing. The percentage in wealth in America for them has


gone up 300%. In Britain it is less spectacular, but what the


protestors at St Paul's share with counterparts in New York, is a


refusal to articulate political programmes and demands. A refusal


to confront power on power's terms. Tonight the Cathedral authorities


resumed court action to evict the protest, after a two-week legal


truce broke down. The scenes in Athens tonight, the anniversary of


the revolution that overthrew the military junta in 1973, had, for


some, echos of 1973. This in Madrid, where on the eve of an election,


tens of thousands of students marches against education cuts.


These are becoming the symbolic images of 2011. If we thought it


had begun in Tunis, and ended in Tripoli, we thought wrong.


Joining me now from New York is the journalist and activist, Laurie


Penny, she was out on the streets today, with The Oxford Murders


protestors. Joining me in the studio was Richard Sharp, a former


partner at Goldman Sachs, one of four City figures recruited last


year by George Osborne to consult on options for reducing the public


deficit. Richard Sharp, you visited both these movements, you must be


pretty impressed with how they have managed to influence mainstream


politics now, aren't you? Well, I was actually disappointed with the


demonstrations themselves, in some way. Because there is a generation


which does have to care deeply about their future, which is being


damaged by the activities of the last 15 years, of Governments and


commerce. It has left a legacy of debt and problems that they are


experiencing, in seeking employment, and facing a future where they will


have to repay the debts associated with expenditure, for which they


got no benefit. What are you saying, they are doing the right thing


protesting, surely? I thought the demonstrations certainly in New


York was, for my mind, at that time, this is only ten days ago, was


chaotic and glass sid. It was a tourist - glass sid, it was a


tourist spectacle more than protesters. The points made were


trivial, there are substantive points but they were not made when


I was there. What do you make of that, a demonstration that was


chaotic and flaccid? That may have been the scene a dau days ago, but


after the eviction of Occupy Wall Street on Tuesday nationwide. The


energy has been galvanised again, there were thousands on the streets


today. A lot of angry chanting. Banks got bailed out, we got sold


out. I saw people on the streets being violently arrested, a lot of


anger. There was certainly energy, and not only broad and sweeping


ideas for social change, not unified ideas, certainly, but there


was also a wonderful moment which I hope someone has captured on camera,


where people sat down in the middle of one of the occupied streets and


started sharing stories. One woman saying her home had been


repossessed, and another public school teacher saying all her


students' parents were unemployed. Students, families, workers,


everyone coming together to share their stories. This is really what


the day has been about, partly. I want to make it clear it wasn't


just scenes of violence and of police brutality on the streets.


There was also a lot of hope. A lot of joyful defiance, which I think


is one of the very important things. What do you make of the fact, then,


that despite this joyful defiance, as you put it, broadly there is


less public sympathy for you as the protests go on. People are losing


faith in you, and finding the demonstrations annoying? 35% of the


American public still support The Oxford Murders Wall Street movement,


and The Oxford Murders movement. I find it rather disheartening that


after about a year of -- the Occupy movement, and find it rather


disheartening that you, as a journalist, find it nothing more


than an annoyance, this is more than a generation trying to turn


around and refigure politics, after having been told all their lives


that there is nothing to do to confront capitalism. Broadly, they


have managed to bring wealth inequality to the top of the agenda,


they have properly spooked President Obama, they have made


David Cameron take a very strong stance on bankers' bonuses here.


Angela Merkel's talking about the Tobin tax. It doesn't sound that


chaotic when you look at how the politicians around the world are


responding? Look, we're facing a global economic crisis, that some


leading Central Bankers have called unprecedented. What is remarkable


is that you have these tiny pockets of people, where it hasn't gathered


more momentum, given some of the real pep pep pri vaigs associated


with unemployment d deprivation associated with unemployment and


the crisis. What would you like to see them doing? There are multiple


problems. First of all, the leadership is distributed and not


apparent at all. They have damaged their cause by making the cleaning


up of the park, and the behaviour that has taken place a bigger story


than their objectives. What they have talked about is what they are


against, but not what they are for Let's put that to Laurie Penny,


what would you like to see changed, in terms of concrete policies, what


are you for? I can't speak for The Oxford Murders movement as a whole.


I'm just -- the Occupy movement as a whole. I'm just an individual


associated with the movement. A lot of the movement is for change. In


Wall Street, for example, many of the people down on the streets are


people who spent a lot of their young lives voting and working for


the Obama campaign, these were people promised change at the hands


of left-wing politicians, or centre left politicians, and now they are


seeing that change is something you have to stand up and take for


yourselves. Because politicians, at the moment, they don't see that


they are going to deliver it. does that mean, does that mean they


want a change to the change Obama promise, they are anti-Obama, or


anti-capitalism, what does it mean in defining, tangible terms? Well,


there are some people down there, for example, who want to see a


return of the certain acts there are some people who want to impose


a very limited tax on the wealthy. Some people are asking for


revolutionary change, some people are asking just for a little bit


oflyway, little leeway, and asking that we don't have to pay for the


financial recklessness of the superrich. I don't think that is a


big thing to ask. One of the reasons you are not hearing an


answer, is because this is, in some sense, in a positive way, a -- an


argument of the left. The real problem they have is the target


should be socialism, in other words, it should be Governments that spent


money they didn't have, that...That Is absolute nonsense, excuse me,


that is absolute nonsense. We have a massive deficit across the world


because of a financial crisis that occurred three years ago and was


building up for many years, it was not overspending, we don't have


debt because of the public sector, we don't have debt because we spent


too much on public services. We have debt because the superrich and


the banks were allowed to run rampent with public money that


didn't really exist creating bad debts, this is basic check


economics. Both of you, the debts of Government are Government debts.


What we're talking about is politicians, in seeking popularity,


spending money that they didn't have. Part of that debt is bailing


out the banks during the crisis? The debts of Government are


Government debts. Having false accounting themselves from the


Government. Let's just hear Richard's point. We have seen that


right across Europe. The scale of the debt that the Governments


occurred -- incurred to gain popularity did two things, a stock


of debt the Governments have to repay which they are afraid they


can't. Secondly, this is most important, it damaged the private


sector at a time when we have global competition. Germany has no


problem right now. Germany has full employment. You said they bought


the popularity, that was what their debt was spent on. The debt was


spent, surely, partly, on saving the financial sector from complete


collapse in the Liamman years? -- Lehman years? That is part of it,


but what you had was an irresponsible politicians,


responsible for the debt, Ed Milliband, talking about the need


for responsible capitalism. The Governments have to face up to


their irresponsibility. This is complete non-sen, you are talking


in a local context about a financial crisis that is global. I


can't believe a former banker is sitting here and telling me,


peddling out this Tory line that this is the Labour Government's


problem. I'm no fan of the Labour Government. Greece, Portugal,


Ireland, Spain, France Italy. is nonsense. This is no way to talk


about a financial crisis. The banks are kidding themselves if they


think we are fooled. Silvio Berlusconi may be gone, but


his buffoons gaffe-laden spirit would seem to live on in the form


of FIFA head, Sepp Blatter, his latest salvo, that racism on the


football pitch could be settled by a good-natureed handshake, has been


met with ridicule and calls for his resignation, tonight even from


David Cameron. His words have once again re-opened the debate on


racism in football. As two English players phase accusations of racism


towards fellow players. We ask tonight if the game, while being


mull national and multirationale, does it still have a problem. How


racist is football, in England the game isn't what it was. For that we


should all be grateful. There is no doubt football has changed since


the noxious 1970s and 1980. Football Association has agreed to


investigate charges that racialist groups are using the terraces of


some league clubs as a recruiting ground. Back then English crowds


delighted in jeering black players, and the banter carried a vicious


edge. Here we are in the dwindling days of 2011 and England's captain


is captured on camera, now all over the Internet, oh aye what's that


then parently calling an opponenting an "f-ing black ". John


Terry denies racism, he says the words he used were "I never called


you an F-ing black and all the rest", he says the denying was


hidden by a colleague walking in front of the lens.


Mark Bright is a former player who says he's shocked by the


allegations against John Terry, because football has been


transformed in the last 20 years. But racism still rears up in


certain contexts. It is still there, it is still there. It has been


suppressed, I think, the social networking sites now are, the boys


are on that, the black guys, they say things, it is racist abuse that


comes back, not abuse, not banter, racist abuse, from Stan Collymore,


Rio Ferdinand, and others, the police are investigating those


things. That may say more about internet trolls than football.


Racists have had to move on-line, because they have largely lost the


forum of the English football crowd. What happened? The stereotype of


the unintelligent and lazy black footballer was undermined bit


performances on the pitch, by outstanding players like John


Barnes, and others, I think also football took a very strong,


hardline stand against racism. It was policed by the stew wards, the


fans took ownership of it to a certain extent. Over time, this


particular approach reaped dividends. Iconic figures within


football stood up and said this is an absurd ideology, something we


hate and disagree with. Slowly and surely the culture within football


has changed. The situation today is far superior, unimagineably so to


what it was 20 or 30 years ago. sophistication heralded by foreign


imports, has just introduced a new problem. Luis Suarez, a brilliant


arrival from Euro-guy, has been charged with the FA for racially


abusing a Patrice Evra, he says he called him Nig rito, but says in


Spanish it is a term of endearment. The FA, who struggle with the


offside trap, must determine linguistic nuance and intent. Sepp


Blatter is apparently blind to such subtlies, his comment that racism


taunts should be finished with post match handshakes. He says he's


misunderstood. Rio Ferdinand, brother of the one of the victims


John Barnes fought the good fight, winning major victories in the


1980s, his talent and charm killed off racism in the Liverpool crowd,


and shamed others. It was Barnes, who disDanefully backhealed a


banana. I was playing for Liverpool against Everton, that is an iconic


image, obviously from a negative point of view. I had experienced it


years before, at West Ham, Millwall, because it wasn't a high-profile


incident nothing was made of it. Any black player in the 1980s,


would have been through that. Bright, knows about the bad old


days. I had a letter, they don't want any black Bs here, and there


is a bullet for you. I kept the letter, and I thought look at the


attitude of the people it is out there. You didn't go to Everton?


didn't go to Everton for because of the letter, but going there as the


first black player, it wasn't successful for enough for me to go.


For all the allegations and the mess of Mr Blatter, times have


changed. Watch this from 1984. John Barnes was a star at Cup Finalists


Watford. Because # No woman no cry. Michael Barrymore on a BBC preview,


played his own tribute, blacked up. No trouble? # One love


# Let's get together # And feel all right


I'm feeling fine. Back then we supposedly all fell about


laughinger or not? The tactics all done. We have tack ti, what I do if


the Everton player comes towards me, hello, me Watford, then me go, we


take the ball and we go like this. Peter Marshall with that report.


This November, they tell us, is on track for being the warmest on


record for some 350 years. Chance to become the stuff of cliche,


every time the weather does something odd, we point to climate


change as the explanation. How realistic is that. Tomorrow the


UN's Panel on Climate Change is expected to claim it believes man


made emissions are making storms, floods and droubgts more likely.


Scientists believe they are getting better at working out the effects


of climate change, and some can pinpoint which freak weather events


are caused by global warming and which ones aren't.


It is one of the hottest topics in climate science. Can humans be


deemed to blame for extreme weather events. Such as last year's heat


wave in Russia, or the floods that have hit the UK in recent decades.


And whenever we hear news of people who have lost their lives, or their


homes, after a disastrous weather event, a flood, hurricane or fires


from heat wave, it is the question that sooner or later everyone asks,


was it climate change or not? As London basks in a glorious mild


autumn. November looks to be one of the warmest on record. It is not


extreme weather event, but it is unusual. What-to-what extent can we


pin this on human-induced climate change. We have had a unique record


in the UK, that goes back to the 17th century. We can see there has


been a general warming of a degree Celsius. We can relay that to the


increasing odds of something like a mild autumn. When we do that we can


make the inference that it looks likely that there is an increased


chance of having a very mild autumn. Heatwaves like Europe's in 2003,


and Russia last year, have increased since 1950. They are now


expected to occur once every 20 years, rather than once a century.


Scientists are increasingly confident these are made more


likely by human-induced climate change. Extreme rainfall and floods,


like those in the UK, in recent decades and drougts in the Tropics


and sub tropics, have become more common since the 50s and 70s. On


both, local land shape and conditions, make it less clear cut


for scientists to link these to human activities. Storms are the


most difficult to attribute directly to people. They involve


complicated wind patterns. So, is it time to call in the lawyers?


Some feel there is potential here for legal action against energy


companies over damage caused by extreme weather. There is


litigation in the states. It has had a checkered history. My own


view is that in this country and Europe, it is not a realistic


prospect in the short-term future, but if we get a failure to have


international regulation, and if there is a continued large scale


emission by groups of companies in the knowledge of the likely


consequence, I think it is very possible in the medium or long-term.


The scientific debate over the Russian fires, shows how views on


the impact of human activities can differ. One paper, from a America,


concluded that the record-breaking temperatures were due mainly to


natural vairability, a stationary high pressure system. But in


October, a second study, from Germany, concluded there is an 80%


chance that the heatwave would not have occurred without human-induced


climate change. Some scientists think it is the interplay between


the two where the real answers are. The IPCC report is expected to say


nor for the next decade or two there will be uncertainty. The


effects we will be all having is small compared with natural


variability. If we carry on as we are, as the century progresses, it


is thought the human effects will be easier to spot. Because of our


understanding in terms of how the general climate system is changing,


we can start to develop reliable results about how our risk to


extreme climate change has changed, even before the signal has emerged


so clearly that it is utterly indisputable. Some scientists are


unhappy the -- with the approach. Different models produce different


results. It focuses on the meteorological hazarz, the heatwave


or extreme rainfall, rather than on the damages. For example, lives


lost, or costs in pounds. Such critics fear that if at tribbuegs


like this goes ahead, funding -- at tribbuegs goes ahead, funding won't


be at the core. This suggests we should increase the funding side of


things, but societies across the world are being exposed to human


and natural occuring extreme weather events. Because of that it


would create a problem, It would only fund the human-induced part of


extreme weather events. These scientists asked why bother trying


to disenhangle human effects from natural varietyability, better,


they say, to put -- vair ability, better, they say, to making sure


that people everywhere can adapt to surviving the extreme coming their


way. Our guests are with us. Professor Allen, are you able to


say with more clarity, whether extreme weather events are caused


by climate change, would you allocate resources as a result of


what you know? The crucial point to understand, when we talk about


extreme weather caused by climate changement we are not seeing


weather events that simply could not have happened without climate


change. A good analogy is given by this dice, if I role the dice here,


and I get a five, I role it again, and I get a, it is not working, it


never works live. That is fantastic. This is a loaded dice, not working


to its potential. It is coming up sixes. Let's leave that. We are


trying to, what we're doing is qantfying how much the weather --


quantifying how much weather is occurring. You saw a sequence in


the dice, it is the way it works with the weather. It is not that


easy, but we are seeing that the weather dice being loaded towards


certain events happening. Do you think your climate science is more


accurate than the rolling of the dice you have just had, that is


fundamental, isn't it? The point we're saying is we are starting to


learn how to do this. It is not that we know exactly how to do it


for every weather event in the world. What we can say is for


certain weather veepbts, the obvious ones, we can say how the


odds on the weather events have changed. That is what the new


science of probableistic attribution is all about. That


becomes crucial, doesn't it, if you are starting to see the science


help to prove that certain extreme weather conditions are as a result


of man made climate change, you have to act on that? That is where


the problem lies. I'm all for looking at the human system. When


Myles and his friend say this could help the adaptation of resources


around the world, that is when I get particularly worried. What he's


doing is not understanding the nature of the adaptation process,


by trying to suggest that we have what we might call tough luck


weather, and human weather, and these are separate catagories, we


need to adapt the human cause weather, but not the tough luck


weather, that is failing to understand adaptation is actually


the same whether human caused or not. You are saying the science


isn't up to it, bluntly? I'm saying it is far too premature to be


trailing this as a way of informing adaptation decisions around the


world today. What is needed is investment in daiptation to improve


the adaptive xapsity of those communities most at -- capacity of


those communities at risk. You are not there yet? We're not there for


every weather event. But, if you are living in an African village


and being affected by storms, it is obviously making sense to invest in


defences against those storms. But, nobody is suggesting that whether


or not those storms are caused and the risk of storms is increased by


the human causes, and you need to put up defences against them, but


it is highly interesting who pays the bill. We have given resources


to poor countries, not very many, to help them deal with the


unfortunate consequences of bad weather. You are prepared to go to


Governments on the strength of what you know at this point, and say


they should be giving more money because of X or Y? We are not


saying. That we are saying people deserve to know. If certain weather


events are being made more likely by human influence on climate, it


changes the nature of the question. We used to give money to help


people affected by bad weather as a matter of son shepbs, however if it


is our actions making the weather worse, it is not a matter of


conscience, it is a matter of justice. That has to be right, if


we know something, if we are using the science, there is a political


responsibility that comes with that? He's promoting this as way of


introducing evidence-based policy into adaptation. Actually we have


very, very well assessed evidence that we know whether extremes cause


the greatest damage, the greatest loss of life, the greatest dangers


to those people who have least capacity to adapt to those weather


risks. That is very clear and unequivocal evidence. That is what


should be driving our adaptation policy, our adaptation funding, not


a scientific methodology, that is still emergent, biased towards


those weather extremes happening in the high latitudes rather than the


Tropics where it is needed. Thank you very much for coming in.


Before we go let me take you there the front pages of tomorrow's


papers. The Independent has a global look at the economic prots


That's all from Newsnight and the team tonight, from all of us here,


Reasonable weekend coming up. Wet for some, sunny for others. Quite a


lot of variety across the UK. On Friday's chart the best of the


sunshine will be across England and Wales. Certainly through mid-


afternoon, it should feel very pleasant through the heart of


northern England, there will be a breeze, but not too strong.


Temperatures up in the mid-teens, yet again, it should not feel like


the middle of November. Fine for most of central and southern


England, even across the south west. Starting off cloudy, damp, things


will perk up through the afternoon. With some sunshine around. It will


be blustery towards western coasts and hills. The same can be said for


Wales. Dampness to start the day, but brings cheering up by the


afternoon. Brightness for Belfast. Most of northern staying cloudy


with the threat of rain across more western areas. For Scotland, parts


of the southern Highlands, a lot of rain. Inbetween, calt bout and


north-east of the Highlands it should be dryer and brighter. To


the weekend a lot of dry weather, this is for more northern parts of


UK, the threat is from rain in Belfast. Further south, largely dry,


the cloud will come and go, in any sunshine it will feel pleasant.


Temperatures nudging into the low to mid-teens. This is Saturday's


In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines with Emily Maitlis. Who are the Free Syrian Army, and do they stand a real chance of deposing President Assad?

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