14/09/2012 Newsnight


Are topless pictures of Kate Middleton a return to the way the press pursued Diana? Plus the violent protest rocking the Muslim world. With Kirsty Wark.

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Will the anti-American protests, which have ignited in countries


across the Muslim world, have lasting impact on US foreign policy.


Today those protests spread to Sudan, including attacks on the


British and German embassies in Khartoum. Tonight the bodies of the


American diplomats killed in protests in Libya arrived back at


Andrews Air force Base. There is grief and anger in the


United States too, and people trying to work out what this


display of visceral hatred means for their policies towards the Arab


world. A grotesque invasion, furious words


from William and Kate, as they sue the French magazine that published


the topless pictures of her, as the couple holidayed in a secluded


chateau in France. TRANSLATION: These are pictures that will go


around the world, that is our headline, I don't know a single


celebrity magazine in the world that wouldn't have run the pictures.


We will discuss what made the French publish and why the British


press withheld. Good evening, the wave of protests


against the amateur US film, insulting the Prophet Mohammed,


spread across much of the Muslim word, with vehement anti-American


and anti-western demonstrations. Some were peaceful, in countries


such as Indonesia, Pakistan and Malaysia, but elsewhere, protestors


went on the attack. One person was killed in Lebanon, when a KFC


restaurant was burned down. Protestors in Tunisia attacked the


American Embassy and set fire to an American school. The big protest


was in the capital of Sudan, Khartoum, when protestors attacked


German and British embassies. In Tahrir Square tonight protests are


still going on. It has just been confirmed one protestor has died in


clashes with police. Finally Egypt's President, Mohammed


Morsi, went on television to condemn the protests after strained


relations with the US. The body of the US Ambassador


killed this week arrived back in the US. We will speak to our


correspondent amid the protestors in Tahrir Square tonight. First


Mark Urban, his report contains flash photography.


It was inevitable that Friday prayers would bring angry scenes


across the Arab world. With the Daneer cartoons row, and the one


earlier this year about the burning of Korans at an American base, the


insult to mobilise millions of believers has been shown once more.


TRANSLATION: Barack Obama, I want to say, that you have not arrested


him yet, how long do Muslims have to wait, he has attacked the heart


of millions of Muslims. Barack Obama, we say arrest him, and hang


him. In Washington, they are mourning


the loss of an ambassador, and his three colleagues. Any sense that


the withdrawal from Iraq, and President Obama's outreach to the


Islamic world, might have soothed tensions between the culture, has


been badly rocked. Inevitably, there are questions too, about the


perceived gains from the Arab Spring. I think there's a normal, I


think, instinctive American reaction, by the way I think it


would be the reaction of any people in similar circumstances, that, you


know, why don't we just let these people go off by themselves and not


get involved. And, again, it's the job of American political


leadership to explain why that's not possible, why we can't simply


leave the Middle East, as much as many Americans would probably like


to do so. The four killed at the consulate in


Benghazi were returned home today. There is anger and grief here too,


and it's not about a symbolic insult. Americans have grown used


to flag burning and the like, but how to exert political leadership


now, the Obama administration has combined promises of action to find


the culprits, with calls for cool heads.


We will bring to justice those who took them from us. We will stand


fast against the violence on our diplomatic missions. We will


continue to do everything in our power to protect Americans serving


overseas, whether that means increasing security at our


diplomatic posts, working with host countries, which have an obligation


to provide security, and making it clear that justice will come to


those who harm Americans. This work, and the men and women who risked


their lives to do it, are at the heart of what makes America great


and good. So we will wipe away our tears, stiffen our spines and face


the future undaunted. And we will do it together. Protecting and


helping one another. In Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood today called off


demonstrations, and the President that party propelled into office,


sought to calm the situation. TRANSLATION: In Egypt we have


clearly declared that we reject and condemn the killing of innocent


people, and the attacks on embassies and consulates. Our duty


is to defend diplomats, tourists and all foreigners who are guests


in our country. So political leadership is doing its work in


this difficult situation. But the question remains as to whether the


uglier passions seen, either on the Arab street, or Main Street USA,


can be soothed by statesmanship alone.


The fact that today's violence has targeted British and German as well


as American missions, suggests that the precise causes of this may have


become less important. Than a general venting of anti-western


feeling. When feelings cool things may return to normal, outwardly at


least, but the American hunt for the perpetrators of Benghazi, and


the low likelihood of prosecution for the offending film makers who


seem to have started this, mean there will be plenty of scope for


further tensions in the months ahead.


The BBC's Middle East editor is in Egypt's Tahrir Square tonight.


Jeremy, we have just heard that there is one person confirmed dead,


what is actually happening in the square beyond you, just now?


Tahrir Square at the moment, there is a lot, there is a sense of


expectation, people are hanging around and waiting. But the cars,


as can you see behind me, are moving. The action as such, the


clashes, are taking place 200 yards that way, towards the American


Embassy, where a big wall has been built by the security forces, to


stop people getting towards it. But there, when I went to check it out


about half an hour ago, there were quite a lot of people who were


engaging with the police there. Who were firing teargas at them. It was


quite a heavy atmosphere. But, in terms of the impetuous behind these


protests, the initial impetuous being that amateur US film, do you


get a sense of something bigger, or is there a general feeling that


America is anti-Islamist? I think we have lost you? Thank you very


much indeed. I think we had problems in Tahrir


Square there. But we can go to our guests now, Ashraf El-Baroudi is


President of the Egyptian Appeal Court, and the husband of Egypt's


first female presidential candidate. Robert Danin was a US deputy


Assistant Secretary of State until 2010. Good evening to both of you.


The atmosphere that Jeremy is talking about in Tahrir Square, you


were there on quite a different occasion, when there were the


protests to overthrow Hosni Mubarak. How worrying are the developments


of the last three days to you? I'm not that worried about the


agravation of the situation concerning the US embassy. This is


not the problem here, but there are some other backgrounds here. Let me


summerise them for you, very quickly. First ly, in general, how


does -- firstly, in general, how those young people view the United


States of America in general, they see the United States of America as


the friend of Israel. This long heritage has been affected very


much due to the atrocities that took in Gaza and this and that.


America and among the people doesn't have in the Egyptian street


a very good reputation. This is one thing. The second thing is there is


a party here that is the Egyptian police, because there is a huge


crack between the Egyptian young people and the Egyptian police, as


they have been going through police brutality for a long time. If you


add to that the feeling of despair after the revolution, all this and


that, that makes all the ground ready for a reaction of this sort,


if I may say so. Let me tell you this, the battle going on the


streets right now in Cairo, it's not against the American Embassy as


much as it is against the police once again. They are throwing rocks


over the police and exchanging hits here and there. So the police here


is not the one that is defending the embassy, rather than being a


party in itself, as usual. There has been a very sad heritage about


that. It is complicated. Robert Danin, what Ashraf El-Baroudi seems


to be saying is, yes, of course, the protests over the film are one


thing, but this is actually a much bigger antipathy to America,


looking at it from American point of view, what does that say about


American foreign policy? I think we should be circumspect in


universalising or drawing such broad sweeping generalisation from


what has happened. Our embassy was attacked on 9/11, the wall was


breached, American flag was burned, the security perimeter was


abandoned by the Egyptian security forces there. We have had a


security failure. We have then had a political failure in the


leadership of the Egyptian Government to condemn it. It took


several days for them to try to rein it in. Instead they called for


further protests. So, sorry. So, in that case, do you think that what


you are saying, essentially, is that Mohammed Morsi, is not playing


the part of a partner to Barack Obama? Well, I think this is a


moment of real testing for Mohammed Morsi. He handled it, at least in


the initial period, not as the leader of a country, but as the


former leader of an opposition movement. After two days of real


challenges, in which the United States expressed its displeasure,


both with the film, calling it disgusting and reprehensible, but


clearly expressing its displeasure with the way the Egyptian


authorities have mishandled this situation. I think President Morsi


is now starting to take responsibility for the actions of


the people under his authority. do you think there is more, you


talked about the film being very clearly stated as reprehensible, is


there more than can be done, either that message is not getting out to


many countries in the Muslim world, or is not really about that?


think there is a profound misunderstanding here. There is a


film that was made in the United States, we have freedom of speech


in our country. Our leaders have denounced it, but they have not


taken the film off the air. I think in parts of the world where films


are made. Should it be taken off the air? Sorry? Should it be taken


off the air? Let me explain the phenomenon. You have a situation in


which I think people in a part of the world when something broadcast,


they believe this has the, mpreventure of the Government, they


believe the Government has the power to take something off the air


or is behind putting something on the air. That is not how it works


in the United States. It is a profound misunderstanding. Our


leaders in the United States have denounced the film, but they are in


no position to do anything about the film. If you want tole cha eing


the film or video, you can -- to challenge the film or video, you


can take it to court and see if there is reason for legal recourse.


That is how we moderate discourse in this country, not through


violence. Ashraf El-Baroudi, looking to the future, of what an


American foreign policy might look like, a lot of people in America


will be saying today, especially after what happened in Libya, look,


we don't want America to be the policeman of the world, we don't


want America reaching out to try to create Arab Springs, we want to


retrench, we don't want our people and our money going there? Let me


tell you this, before I answer the question, I need as a start to say


that, of course, it is the responsibility of the Egyptian


authorities to protect the American missions. But if we are talking


about the freedom of speech here, I don't think, at all, that the


freedom of speech includes nailing and smearing values that are


sacrosanct to people. Let me tell you this, despite the freedom of


speech that I am listening to and we are talking about, I know very


well that any action, or any statement can be very well


interpreted as anti-semetic. This has been going and on going for a


long time, we can't simply say this is again the freedom of speech, but


listen to me, where are we going here? We are separating the planet,


and we are spreading hatred, I don't think that the freedom of


speech is a very good explanation to make fun of the beliefs of


others. Co-existence means mutual respect, and this is the core of


civilisation. We are right out of time.


Tonight, two American gossip websites have published versions of


the pictures of the Duchess of Cambridge topless, after the palace


announced it would take legal action in the French courts against


the publishers of the French magazine, Closer, that printed them,


calling them "images of cloudless happiness", the palace said a red


line has been crossed. But the editor has defended her position,


and says she has pictures of the couple that are even more intimate.


Today there were two very different images of the Duchess of Cambridge,


depending where in the world you happened to be. In Malaysia, where


she was in a mosque with her husband, on a tour on behalf of the


Queen, she was demurely shrouded in white. In France, readers of the


magazine, Closer, were studying images of her topless, wearing a


black and white bikini bottoms and rubbing suncream on her husband's


back on a holiday last week. The magazine claim the couple were


visible from a nearby road. It led to public outcry and the furious


That is clearly what Prince William and the palace fear, that Kate is


the new Diana, and will be constantly hounded by the press.


Although Diana was pretty adept at using the media when she wanted.


That is presumably the reason why the couple will sue Closer magazine.


How will the French courts react. The position in France will be the


same as here. It is an invasion of privacy to take photographs of


somebody in a private place, where they are topless or partially nude,


they will win their case in France, as they would win it here.


fines in France for cases like this have been pretty small, haven't


they? The rough average fine, well damages in civil cases in France is


about �24,000. The editor of Closer, she seemed unconcerned, hardly


surprising considering the amount of publicity she has enjoyed. She


claims she withheld some pictures. TRANSLATION: We took the decision


to publish a certain number of the pictures. I won't hide the fact


that there are more intimate pictures that exist, that we


haven't published and will not publish. Other newspapers probably


will choose to publish them. what are all the implication of


this in Britain. We also have privacy laws, of course, but no


statutory press regulation. And where Lord Leveson is finalising


his recommendations on the press. The Sun printed pictures of Prince


Harry maked in a Las Vegas hotel room last month. But British papers


turned down pictures of topless Kate proof, say some, that Levison


should continue to support self- regulation by the press. Ironic


isn't it, a statutory system in France, with, in principle, strict


rules, has failed to protect Kate. Here in Britain, where we have a


voluntary, self-regulatory system, the British press hasn't printed


the photos, self-regulatory has worked here and statutory


regulation worked in France. -- hasn't worked in France. Lord


Leveson take note. Once a photo is out there, it is


quite likely to remain out there. And tonight, the topless Kate


pictures are being shown on at least one American website.


Kate Middleton is, understandably, a global celebrity, the royals may


strike a deal with the British press, but it is impossible to make


everyone obey the rules. If you are in the public high to such a high


degree as Kate and William you have to be extremely careful. There are


two separate questions, one is, should somebody in the public eye


be able to sunbathe in private topless, yes, if you are going to


be the future Queen of England, should you choose to do so?


Probably not. Kate Middleton's picture sells papers, the papers in


England will hope Lord Leveson will be impressed by the restraint shown


today when he comes to make his decision in a few weeks.


Agnes Poirier, the French commentator is in the Paris studio,


with husband is Tom Sykes, who edits Daily Beast, and the former


part of the News of the World, and under investigation by the phone


hacking incident. You said, had you been offered the Harry photographs,


you would have published them, if you were offered these photographs


would you vn tempted? Tempts as a journalist who saw amazing pictures


for less than a second, but like every other editor you would have


thought you can't publish these because there is no justification.


What exactly has happened here, do you think? As the day has gone on


today, a lot more has come out about this. And there are, in fact,


two sets of pictures. There was a set of pictures taken of Kate, and


I assume William, earlier in the week, by a local newspaper. I have


no idea... These were paparazzi- type shots, they were not allowed.


There was no collusion with the Royal Family, they were taken in


the same way? The local paper went along and grabbed some pictures,


without permission. Topless? don't believe so. The point being,


however, we don't know whether the topless pictures were taken before


or after that, but earlier this week the palace were aware, because


Fleet Street was aware, so the palace was bound to be aware, that


pictures had been taken on that holiday. That doesn't, of course,


justify the fact? Tom Sykes, you move in these kinds of circles,


what do you think has been the impetuous for the reaction this


time, this is the most vehement statement that has ever come out of


the palace about the paparazzi. course, just two days ago, William


was asked if he could have one superpower could he have from a


child, he said "invisibility", clearly they don't have that. I


think you can definitely detect the hand of William in the response. I


feel that the response that they issued was inappropriately


emotional, if I may couch it in those terms. Obviously they were


upset. The indication of his mother's name and what happened to


her? That was a very strange decision, to say this incident


recalls the worst excess of the press, and the Princess Diana era,


it is just not accurate. It smacks a bit of a hysterical, not really


very well thought through response. It feels to me as if at that moment


the royals really completely have lost control of the story. What has


happened, I suppose, with talking about Diana, the tabloids would


have come to, I'm sure that connection themselves. But if you


look at the Mail, saying grotesque, you have a picture of Diana in a


hijab and a scarf, and that picture of Kate on the tour. Saying don't


make her a new Diana. The Mirror, royal outrage, "I won't let Kate


suffer like my mother". You are saying it is fuelling the story,


the whole connection, of course, being in France and so forth?


think that fundamentally this is not really a news worthy story. If


you look at the initial reactions today of people, especially on the


social media sites, people were saying, come on, what's the big


deal, a 30-year-old girl takes her top off while she goes sunbathing.


Unfortunate loo, William's response has made this -- unfortunately


William's response has made this news worthy. You are speaking from


Paris, where the story was published. Are you ashamed the


French have published this? Well, I'm amazed more importantly about


the British reaction. Coming from a country where the tabloid culture


and the invasion of privacy happens on Daily basis. It doesn't mean


that the Windsors don't have any rights to sue the Closer magazine.


They do. And I hope they do so and they will win their case easily,


because there are laws in France protecting privacy. Let me remind


you that Closer, the French version of Closer magazine, which appeared


on the French market in 2005, so not so long ago, was at the time an


offshoot from the British Closer. Although today they don't belong.


Silvio Berlusconi now owns it? Absolutely. But the peeping Tom


culture is not very familiar to the French. The French are appalled by


those pictures, I'm not sure they are ashamed, though.


They are not ashamed but appalled. Actually this is an expert we have


given France, this peeping Tom culture, this grabbing pictures of


people like Helen Mirren on the beach in her bikini, a general


invasion of privacy? Nonsense. If you have ever seen French celebrity


magazines, I have been reading them for 20, 30 years, it has lived off


pictures of celebrities on beach. What do you say to that? On beaches


because France is a sunnier country than Britain, that's why they are


on the beaches. You would seem to be suggesting that actually, if


this goes to court they will win, they will win any way, if it is out


of court they will win. What do you say to the defence of Closer's


magazine editor that she's just showing them as cloudless happy


young people, and actually isn't this great, it shows the Royal


Family are a functioning and in a loving relationship. You don't buy


that stuff, do you? Of course not, neither do I buy anything that a


British editor of a British tabloid says. They would say exactly the


same thing, that is to say, being coy, saying well look at them, they


are beautiful and lovely people, it's like the Sun saying we love


Harry, but we think it is in the public interest of showing him in


the nude. No, it is not in the public interest. It is the same


thing in France or in Britain. you personally, but the tabloids


justified it saying he's a member of the Armed Forces and let himself


get into a very dodgy situation, this calls into question the


security detail and so forth? say that and on this programme. It


is the two circumstances are utterly different. What you have


here is, there is no public interest justification for this.


And can I just say, there is one important thing on this, France has


severe privacy law, those pictures have been printed there. In Britain


we don't have the same privacy law, but the press here have decided,


unilaterally, they will not publish. I want to look at the Star front


page, we no from the editor of Closer, who suggests she has other


photos. I think the Star is jumping on, I don't think they were offered


them. I'm slightly wary of this, there is new pictures. We were told


throughout the Vegas thing, there is video and more pictures, if


there is more why not publish them. Wouldn't that make sense of William


going in hard? It could do. The other explanation, perhaps, is that


they seeking to really put the frighteners on the press around the


world. And to try to say, look, if you publish these, we will come


after you, it is very plain to see, that as a strategy it is backfiring.


Can we talk about Levison for the last amount of time we have, is


this one more thing to stop the boiler for hard new privacy laws


under Leveson? Even under that there can be no complaints about


the British press's behaviour on this. They have abided by the PCC


code, the PCC have a whole number of tests you have to pass, and it


didn't work with this, and so the papers haven't published. As we


have talked about, we are in a post-Leveson scenario, two American


gossip website about to publish, although slightly doctored


photographs. Actually, in the end will Leveson be redundant before it


is publish. You work on-line? think that's really the issue, is


that trying to muzzle the British press is completely, totally


pointless. For 99% of people, who are going on-line, and getting


their information on-line. I have seen these pictures on-line tonight.


If everything is about on-line, there is going to be no privacy


laws that will matter a candle in any country. It will be a free for


all on-line, is that what we are heading for? I think it is a matter


of principle, in France, why do French celebrity press target


American or British personalities more than the French one, because


the French ones are very aware of their rights and go straight, fast,


and sue them. They are fined every week, perhaps the fines should be


much higher, actually much higher at the same level they were 20


years agoth they would not publish them. Make it financial. Thank you


very much, that is all from Newsnight tonight, Jeremy is here


on Monday v a great weekend, -- have a great weekend, especially if


you are going on the Great North you are going on the Great North


Run. Good night. The winds are eegs overnight, that


will allow one or -- easing overnight, that will allow one or


two fog patches to form. A chilly start in the morning, but a fine


day for most place. More cloud in the west. Grey on the coast of


North West England, but certainly to the east of the Pennines spells


of sunshine, a sunny day or two across much of the Midlands, East


Anglia and the south-east. With lighter winds than today, it will


feel warmer as temperatures get into the low 20s. We will see some


cloud developing across south-west England, some of the coasts here


may be drab, but generally it is a dry and a bright day, as it is


across much of Wales. Parts of the west coast may be predominantly


overcast, we should, at least, have some sunshine. A bright and breezy


day in Northern Ireland. Breezy, but not the strong winds as during


the Friday. The same goes across much of Scotland, the winds lighter.


Still a lot of cloud in the west, one or two showers. Temperatures on


the Moray firt higher, we may get up to 20 degrees.


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