26/06/2014 Newsnight


In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines with Laura Kuenssberg.

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dropped by Syria as the country's future looks more bleak, was our


past involvement in 2003 a mistake. In retrospect yeah, I'm not seeking


to evade or avoid my responsibilities for having made


that decision. The Foreign Secretary at the time tell uses us we -- tells


us we got it wrong. We are live in Baghdad.. The Iraqi Prime Minister


tells us he welcomes the Syrian air strikes as he struggles to hold it


together. What have the license fee and this posh house in the country


got in common. More than you might think. The decades of Jimmy Savile's


de-Paris Match vow are revealed in an official inquiry. We will ask how


he was able to get away with it for so long. Growing up I was a soccer


fan, I'm enjoying being an American. They may have lost to Germany but


they have done better than England. Is it time to get behind America's


bid for World Cup glory. ?TRANSMIT The Iraqi Prime Minister said thank


you for bombs that dropped on his country today, such is the dessprat


state of affairs that he welcomed President Assad's Syrian plane that


is struck on insurgents on Iraq's borders, and he has ordered his own


fighter planes to help from Russia. But when the Foreign Secretary,


William Hague, met with Nouri Al-Maliki today, he urged him and


leaders from every part of Iraq, Sunni and Shia, to unite to stop a


descent into chaos. William Hague said Iraq faced an existential


threat, and he said there could only be a political solution to this


crisis. We heard similar words earlier this week from John Kerry.


We have heard words from Iraqi politician, including the Prime


Minister, about forming an inclozeive new Government. But if


you look at what's happening on the ground, those words feel very much


like just that. Hollow words. If you look at Iraqi television at the


moment, hours and hours of footage of young men, volunteering to join


militias, brandishing guns, going off to fight. If you speak to


Sunnis, many say they feel frozen out of stake in this country and in


the places where ISIS is in control, many in the north and west, many


Sunnis are supporting that group rather than their own Government.


Clashes and skirmishes are still going on, mainly again in the north


and west, which is quite some way away from where I am in Baghdad.


Perhaps because of that distance in the capital itself there is a sense


of uneasy calm. In a city used to everyday violence a sudden spell of


calm is not necessarily good news. In Baghdad these past few weeks


there have been fewer bombings than usual. But Iraq is struggling to


hold itself together and the capital feels like an uncertain place.


Baghdad feels weirdly quiet, the streets look almost deserted


compared to what they usually are, that is because many people are


leaving town. Some have gone up north to fight against ISIS, but


others have been telling us that they are leaving town simply because


they are scared to stay. The region's geopolitical alliances are


morphing. On Tuesday, an air strike just inside Iraq's borders was


attributed to the Syrian air force. Until recently Iraq accused Syria of


stoking unrest in the desert heartland that straddles the two


countries. Now that area has become an embryonic kalafat, led by ISIS.


In an interview today, Nouri Al-Maliki said he and President


Assad, both leading Shia Government, share a common enemy. TRANSLATION:


Syrian jets struck an area inside the Syrian side of the border. There


was no co-ordination involved, but we welcome this action. We actually


welcome any Syrian strike against ISIS because this group targets both


Iraq and Syria. So we welcome any Syrian strike against ISIS as we


welcome any Iraqi strike against ISIS. This bakery in a predominantly


Sunni district of Baghdad, prides itself on the fact it employs people


across the sectarian divide. Some Sunni workers have taken fright,


preferring to return to areas with ISIS rather than take their chances


in Baghdad. TRANSLATION: People are detained every day, if a group of


young guys is walking on the streets, they will be arrested. The


security forces treat them badly, pushing and beating them. He says


years of what he sees as devisive rule by Nouri Al-Maliki's Government


is to blame for the current crisis. TRANSLATION: All this is happening


because of the behaviour of the security force, people are treated


unjustly, thousands are in prison and it keeps on happening. This


sense of fear and alienation has been key to the success of ISIS,


without the support of local Sunni tribes they would struggle to hold


the territory they have captured, and their rapid advance towards


Baghdad has prompted a show of force from the Shia community.


Militia groups have been attracting thousands of new recruits. In Sadr


City on Saturday the army was on parade. Followers of the cleric Sadr


say they will only protect religionious shrines. Others have


been directly involved in fighting againsties circumstance some receive


support from Iran, not all support the Mall mal-Government. -- Nouri


Al-Maliki's Government. TRANSLATION: We have our own leader, we don't


follow anyone else, our leader is clear in what he says, if he says


march we march, we are under the command of Al-Sadr. ISIS is a


regional and international problem, Saudi rainia and Qatar and other


occupying forces have allowed this group to enter Iraq through Syria.


There is an air of unreality about the playground on the banks of the


Tigris. Most of the children will be born after the invasion, memories of


the sectarian Civil War that followed are still Treasury. The


return of the militias is making many uneasy. ISIS is carving out an


empire, its power now stretches all the way from the banks of the river


Tig risks s in Iraq, west to the -- Tigris in Iraq and west. It is not


clear how long it will hold this vast swathe of territory, but it is


changing the geopolitical calculus. Clearly the Iraqi military needs


help to defeat ISIS, the militias are part of the strategy, so is


Iran, the west is still trying to figure out what to do. Meanwhile the


frontiers of the Middle East are shifting and Iraq lies right across


the fault line. 28 hospitals, five decade, victims


of five years old and 75, the numbers speak for themselves,


revealing the span and horror of the TV presenter Jimmy Savile's less


public activities. A report into just one element of his behaviour,


how he connived to gain access to abuse patients in the NHS was


published today. You may find some of this report distressing.


Decades of access to hundreds of vulnerable patients. Jimmy Savile's


obsession with hospitals started in his home town of Leeds. Jane was 16


when she was sent to Leeds General for tests, she was taken by the star


to buy sweets, the next day he asked to see her again in the back of the


hospital. It didn't drag me in, he pulled me in, he gently got hold of


me, pulled me in and immediately started to kiss me. With this


tongue, at the same time his hands, his left hand went on to my right


thigh. I got hold of my hand and he then started to masterbate himself


with my hand. I was trying to make some sense, there were three nurses


on the ward when I got there, and I said you know, they looked at me and


I said you never guess what's just happened and I got as far as Jimmy


and they laughed and I never got a chance to say much more than that.


Savile worked at the hospital radio station and then in the infirmary


itself, as a porter, a fundraiser, a volunteer. He could often be found


alone at night, sitting patients' beds, talking to staff. The abuse


was widespread. Investigators in Leeds found 60 cases over 50 years,


including three of rape. The victims were between five and 75. A


ten-year-old boy was sexually assaulted while he waited on a


trolley for an X-ray. Teenagers recovering from surgery were abused


in their beds and there was even talk of an obsession with dead


bodies. The allegations about his behaviour in the mortuary are


incredibly harrowing and disturbing. What we do know is that his interest


in the dead was pretty unwholesome and that the controls around access


to the mortuary, up to the early 1980s were not robust. So many


people say how come a showbiz punter is doing a job like this at the


world number one mental hospital. By the 1980s Savile was closely


connected to a very different type of hospital, Broadmoor in Berkshire


housed 250 of the most disturbed psychiatric patients in the country.


He started visiting in the late 1960, eventually he had his own room


and was even put in charge of a task force to reform the hospital. We


know now that Jimmy Savile was given his own set of keys and the run of


the hospital grounds here. How then did a television star, with no


medical background end up in such a position of power over so many


vulnerable patients? In the early 1980s Naomi Stanley was a


psychiatric nurse in Cambridge, over the period of months she gained the


trust of a young patients transferred from Broadmoor, she


claimed she had been raped by Savile on multiple occasions, when she


tried to pass on the allegations, she claims she was ignored. Intense


annoyance and irritation like I had really spoken out of turn and they


looked to the male staff to get me into check. The nursing officer said


to me if you ever, ever speak like that again in any kind of meeting,


particularly with people who have come from outside you know you are


going to be disciplined or you are going to get sacked. Today's report


found 11 allegations of sexual abuse by Savile at Broadmoor, six involve


patients, two staff and three children visiting. The authors say


the real numbers could be far higher, given the chaotic number and


vulnerable nature of the people inside. It also raises serious


questions about the man running the hospital for most of the 1990s. Alan


Frainey was brought into Broadmoor on the recommendation of Jimmy


Savile himself. He held a mid-level position at Leeds General Hospital


where he met the star and went running with him. Back then Ray


Roden was the senior civil servant responsible for secure hospitals,


now retired to Spain, he claims he was shocked ZAF had so much freedom


and question -- Savile had so much freedom and questioned Frainey about


it. When I questioned him about it I was told I failed to understand how


valuable the involvement was from this high-profile celebrity. I


argued it felt some what voyeuristic to me. What I didn't know at that


time is he had a set of keys to the damn makes had I known I would have


gone ballistic. You have been named in the report. Yes I know that and I


have had advice from the Department of Health to make no comment. He was


not willing to talk to the BBC today. But in statement to Newsnight


this evening he said: Broadmoor, Leeds Hospital and the


Health Secretary all apologised to Savile's victim today. Many say


lessons still nod to be learned. We need to be more open and transparent


as to what goes on within the walls of places like Broadmoor, and if


there are serious allegations from patients, they should be taken


seriously, because we now know that the women who would not have been


believed should have been believed. They have been proven right. In


2011, Jimmy Savile's body was carried past Leeds General Infirmary


on the way to the City's Cathedral, thousands lined that route, three


years later his fall from grace is complete. Some of his victims, at


least, have finally had their say. With us now are Dr Peter Jefferies,


who was an independent inspector of Broadmoor during the 80s and Esther


Rantzen. The appalling nature of his behaviour is not a shock to u what


is shocking today is the scale of it and the places he was involved in.


The list here of more than 20 hospital, Broadmoor, Leeds, St


Catherine's, Dewsbury and District, the list goes on? The nature of his


crimes is still a shock. Reading what he did to vulnerable people,


whatever their age, particularly the very young, and disturbed, and with


mental health issues is just revolting. It is a measure of his


status, his role within society at that stage. He was a sort of clown


saint. He managed some how to manipulate us all to believing that


he was funny, entertaining and doing an awful lot of good. And that mask


was impenetrable. I met the man half-a-dozen times, I never felt I


knew him, there was always a very strange creation, he created this


personality. But I didn't actually see behind it the depraved, sadistic


paedophile we now know existed. These were the most vulnerable


people in the most vulnerable positions. Dr Jefferies two of the


most astonishing cases in Leeds, and the complete absurdity of what


happened at Broadmoor. You were acting as an independent inspector


during that period, going in and out every six weeks. You were there and


part of it, how on earth was he allowed to have that kind of access


to that kind of place? I don't know how he was allowed access, but it


was in an era, it was a closed institution. There were abuses of


patients by the existing staff and doctors in some case, patients were


not being treated with consent, not being complied with the law. And


reports by the inspectorate that I was part of regularly, in writing to


the hospital and the Department of Health were ignored. For years. But


who thought that part of the solution would be to get a BBC DJ


with no medical qualification or background to help sort it out. Who


thought that was a good idea? The report today both confirms the


closed institutional problem but also draws attention to the senior


civil servants who suggested Savile's name both to be on the


board initially and then to be part of the task force. If you were one


of the people inspecting it, surely there should have been some


discussion or monitoring of who was coming in and out? The access issue


was unbelievable and the report today confirms the totally


unsatisfactory nature, but to give Savile responsibility for management


of the hospital, someone who had no previous experience and skills, is


unbelievable and it meant that apart from his abuse of vulnerable people,


it was no way to sort out the problems of institutions that needed


sorting. Could you believe what happened at Broadmoor? The other


terrible thing is that none of these allegations, none of them, were put


to him during his lifetime. He didn't have to face any of these


extraordinary tragic stories. But people did try to raise the alarm,


as we heard in that film? The trouble is that under our current


judicial system, what happens is that you have the evidence of the


victims, or the survivor, and then you have got this adversarial


system, whereby the defence tries to undermine, confuse, make nonsense of


the allegations, and that means if you have got someone with mental


health issues, or you have got a very young child, or you have got a


child in a children's home, the police will look at that or the


investigators look at that and think they haven't got a chance in hell of


having their story believed by a jury and it never gets any further.


That still happens. Witnesses are still being put up against


cross-examination designed to undermine their credibility in an


adversarial system that still makes it very, very difficult to bring


cases. One group that represents abuse victims believes it could


still happen today. Briefly to both of you, do you think it could still


happen today? I think we are aware now that being a celebrity is not


the same as being a saint. I personally would be quite sorry if


stars weren't able to have access, for example, to terminally ill


children in a ward for whom it means a lot. Although I have been to


hospitals and hospice, never alone, it is never a one-to-one thing, it


never happens behind closed doors and nobody has ever given me the


key, thank the Lord. Do you believe in the kinds of settings that this


kind of access can happen again? I don't think this kind of access


could happen again. Individual access and abuse of vulnerable


children, adults and mentally ill children will continue, and we need


inspection regimes and management that challenges it and prevents it.


Very briefly do you think currently have the regimes and are they strong


enough? They are stronger than they were, not yet strong enough.


Now, EastEnders, Radio 3, Newsnight, of course, website, natural history


programmes and even the Great British Bake Off, if you are into


that sort of thing. There is a very long list of what your ?15. 50


license fee pays for, what might surprise you is also on that list.


An information monitoring service that does work for the Government


Intelligence Service, including providing information that most BBC


journalists cannot see. BBC Monitoring has existed for decades,


but last year the Government stopped paying for it, leaving to you pick


up the bill, and now Newsnight has learned BBC bosses fear that is


compromising the corporation's independence.


It is perhaps the BBC's grandest outpost. Staff here just outside


Reading monitor the broadcasts of foreign radio stations. They also


translate and analyse printed media and on-line material from around the


world. The vast majority of that material is available to all BBC


journalist, I have used it myself for many years. This is one of the


BBC's least known locations, buried deep in the Berkshire countryside,


it looks like a magnificent country home, but you don't have to wander


very far in the grounds here in the parkland that surrounds the house to


realise that there is something less stately and less gentile going on.


An ancient mansion in a Pastoral session. With its landscaped acres,


a worldwide listening post. It has been going on for decades. The


Soviet Union by its action in illegally invading... . The


Government used to pay for all this, but last year BBC's Monitoring ?28


million budget switched to license fee funding.


But there is still a close relationship with Government. An


official document defining the functions of the building describes


some Government ministries and intelligence agencies as key


customers of BBC Monitoring. The Government still funds some work at


the building, such as monitoring Jihadi websites and forums, and the


Government can commission and pay staff to produce material for them.


Some of BBC Monitoring's output is marked "for official use only, not


for broadcast". It raises the question why is a part of the BBC,


some of whose staff are vetted by the Government, doing work for the


intelligence agencies? This Government is trying to divest


itself of a whole number of functions, if Cavan if they are


going to do this on behalf of the Government let's throw open the


windows and understand what they are doing, why they are doing it and


what impact it has on the BBC's core purpose of public service


broadcasting? Now Newsnight has learned that at the highest levels


of the BBC there is concern about whether some of the work being done


is unsuitable for a public broadcaster. I understand that as


part of the charter renewal process, the corporation is seeking to hand


over responsibility for the parts of monitoring that are what one source


described as inappropriate for the BBC. BBC monitoring insists it only


uses publicly available so called open sources, and that it is not


gathering intelligence. It says it does look at some password-protected


Jihadi forum, but only on occasions when the password protection has


been lifted. . Internal e-mails obtained by Newsnight shed light on


the relationship between BBC Monitoring and the Government. This


is an e-mail from someone described as the MoD account manager. It shows


the sort of information that BBC Monitoring is being asked to find.


In this case material on a money transfer network believed to be


involved in funding and supplying weapons to the Taliban. And this is


how the BBC press office explained monitoring's relationship with the


intelligence agencies. The BBC has also told Newsnight that


the customers, including the Government and intelligence


agencies, not only commission work, but also control whether the


material they pay for is shared with BBC News journalists, and if so,


which ones. The BBC says that while most of Monitoring's material is


distributed widely within the BBC, some of the reports it produce, such


as those on Jihadi websites can be seen by only a handful of designated


journalists. A small number of reports commissioned by clients are


not available to any BBC News journalists. A former BBC executive,


who had responsibility for BBC Monitoring says such restrictions on


the circulation of material produced by BBC staff are unacceptable. When


what you are doing is to provide material to Government sources only,


and not to anybody else, then I think that you are deviating from


the principles of journalism. I think that is very, very worrying.


It is not only worrying, actually, it is extremely dangerous, and I


think it should not be done and is not consistent with the principles


of BBC journalism and certainly the BBC's world standing in integrity.


There are lots of restrictions on movements around this building,


downstairs there are BBC staff working in operational areas where


we have been told we can film, but I can't be filmed in those areas. And


then there is the activity upstairs. There, there are Americans working


for an organisation called the Open Source Centre, some of whose staff


is recruited by the CIA, and that area is totally off limits. The


reciprocal relationship with the Americans goes right back to the


Second World War. It has been a sort of open secret. The Americans gather


open source material from some parts of the world, and the BBC covers


other parts. They then share most of the material. But with BBC


Monitoring, now license fee-funded, the partnership with the Americans


looks increasing an axe nestic. As for the -- anachronistic. As for the


American material it is more tightly controlled than the BBC documents.


While I'm told it may be able to get original documents it can't


guarantee doing so. It would seem to make sense some of the activities


done here to be done by the Government, such as GCHQ, but at the


moment it remains the case that some of the material produced here by BBC


staff can be seen by Government officials and not seen by


journalists in the rest of the BBC. Earlier I spoke to the BBC's


director of strategy and digital. We have, and it is a well established


tradition in the country that the BBC is independent of Government. It


was you that said that, that's vital isn't it? It is absolutely vital we


remain independent from Government and we try to protect that the whole


time. What we saw in the report was evidence that BBC staff have


effectively been acting as sub--contractors for the


intelligence agencies. How can that be appropriate, how can that match


up at all with that aspiration, that dedication to independence? Let's


look at the facts of what they are doing. This is all publicly


available information, we declare exactly the fact we are doing it


with the intelligence agencies and a range of other people, with the big


global news agencies, some of our best universities, companies, and


what we are doing is going through publicly available information and


providing a cuttings and analysis service. Why does the Government


then restrict some of the information to a tiny handful of BBC


journalists, if it is all just out there any way? The vast majority of


the information is just directly available, Newsnight uses it a lot


of the time. They were uncouraged as part of the last license fee deal to


go and get more commercial revenue. You are one of the people


commissioning a report, you could have said we won't shape any of.


That we have tried to find an arrangement so all the insight is


available to BBC journalism, and it is, to the audiences watching this


evening. If you could see the questions they were asking, that


might undermine their ability. Some of it is not available, you admit


that? All the insight and information is available, the


questions aren't always. If Panorama were pursuing a story you wouldn't


know the questions they are asking, that is exactly what we do, so they


ask and get these commercial reports. So it is the reports that


are not available. It is not just the questions, not all of the


reports that are produced there are made available? The information on


the inside is all available for BBC journalists. Not the reports? We are


looking at that, charter is coming up, we are setting up a working


group for the Trust with Monitoring to go through all of these things.


There are issues in the report that can all be looked at. What this


suggests though is at very senior levels of the BBC there is a view


that up until now it has been OK for the Government to decide which BBC


journalists get to see information that has been commission bid the


intelligence agencies and with links to the CIA, and in some cases to


decade that no BBC journalists are allowed to see any of that


information at all, and that's OK? The new management can team came in


and we asked ourselves a lot of questions, that is why we looked at


this last year. There is very good answers, as your report showed, to


the vast majority of the questions. If anything needs to change in the


charter review and in the short-term we are happy to look at it. As


things stand now, to be clear, you believe that all of the information


should be shared with any staff that want to see it? As things stand, if


I wanted to see information from a Jihadi website, for example, that


was gathered from Monitoring, as a BBC journalist I wouldn't be


allowed? It is a point of default. It is a point of principle? The


insight and analysis is all available to the BBC journalists.


When people commission a report they can say that you can't share the


insight. But it is you can see it and you can't see the questions. You


we could work on a commission basis and make it available for all. We


are looking at putting more on the website. What do you think license


fee payers watching right now, having clicked on the website today


and listened to the radio through the day what do you think they would


think of some of their ?145. 50 being used to fund an organisation


that has associations with the CIA? So, I would say to them, look at our


Syria coverage, amazing coverage, which has been vitally informed by


the work of BBC Monitoring. We wouldn't be able to do it without


them. We couldn't afford to do this if it was just for BBC News, we


wouldn't be able to do this. What about some of the evidence we saw in


that film, the request for specific information about a Jihadi network,


that is not exactly the kind of thing that you get just from looking


up on the web what was on the newspaper yesterday, looking at


cuttings, it is not the same thing? That is exactly the kind of


information that has been vital in our serial reporting n Iraq, ISIS,


Ukraine. There is a real benefit. Was it available to every single BBC


journalist? All the insight is available to the BBC journalists and


making a difference to audiences day in day out. We are happy to have a


look at this in the next period up to charter review, to see if we can


make it more transparent, and throw the windows open even more. Should


it be part of the conversation that the BBC just stops doing this kind


of work for the Government all together, wouldn't that be better?


This is an historic accident that we have done this. But actually you get


a huge amount of value as a BBC journalist and audience from the


fact it is here. You can change the arrangement. Now it is paid for by


the license fee? Could you change the arrangements but you could lose


the ability to monitor all the sources. Would it be OK if it is


fine for the Intelligence Services to request, commission reports from


the BBC, would it be OK for them to commission a report from Newsnight,


from other parts of the BBC for the Today Programme, that is the kind of


relationship you are talking about and defending? This is all put out


on the BBC Trust website and put under clear rules and they provide


that to a wide range of people, to news agencies, businesses,


newspapers. We are happy to look at widing reening that. -- widening


that. You were the Culture Secretary for quite some time, when you were


Culture Secretary, would you have been happy for the funding of


Monitoring to move from the Government into the license fee, so


that our viewers, radio listener, website users, were paying for this


kind of work to take place. Would you have been happy with that? I'm


not the Culture Secretary any more, I work for the BBC, a deal was done


for five years for the charter period, we won't renege on that. We


will work with Government to look at how BBC Monitoring can thrive in the


future and what the right arrangements are for the next


charter period. Now, what happens if you vow to fight something to the


end, then it ends badly. David Cameron is probably about to find


out. When the candidate he demorse becomes, as expected, the new


President of the European Commission. That is despite his


objections. And concerns over Jean-Claude Juncker's drinking


splashed on the front page of tomorrow's Telegraphof tomorrow's


Telegraph. It does looks a if he's going to hit defeat. This time he


doesn't have a veto, this will be subject to majority voting and the


cards are stacked against him. Only a change of heart by Germany or a


decision by France, if you like, to remove a prohibition on Christine


LaGarde stepping in to Jean-Claude Juncker's place could change this.


Both things look unlikely, it does seem the UK will find itself alone


when the leaders convene tomorrow. Thank you. Earlier I spoke to Jack


Straw, the former Foreign Secretary, and no stranger to these sorts of


deals. I put it to him that David Cameron is perfectly entitled to try


to block Juncker? He's well within his rights and indeed Ed Miliband


and Douglas Alexander have said on behalf of the Labour Party they


don't think that Juncker is the aproper rate candidate --


appropriate candidate. My criticism of David Cameron is not about that,


but his dreadful tactics. He has gone about this in a way that was


almost calculated to ensure he was going to lose, although I'm sure he


wanted to win. Particularly by going as a former, very distinguished and


very guileful British diplomat John Kerr has comment tated today, he


went for the man and not the ball. And that's fine if nobody noticeds,


but if they do it is -- notices, but if they do it is dreadful. David


Cameron has tried to make the case in public, and right across the


public the European elections suggested very heavily this is what


publics across the continent wanted. Is it right to make the case so


publicly? It is right to make the case, but it is what you want out of


it. People criticise Tony Blair, but I have seen him operating when we


correctly decided that the Prime Minister of Belgium was ppropriate


as a federalist, and almost nowhere Governments conjured up Barroso and


he has been relatively successful. But the back channels and doing it


behind closed doors is not very democratic. Isn't that the problem


the EU, people think it is completely remote? It is remote, it


is just the way of the world. The issue here was not whether Mr


Juncker was more or less better than the alternative candidates, but what


he stood for, his set of values and record. That is what Mr Cameron


should have talked about, the fact that we need a different leader in


Europe to make the change that everybody is saying we need. In a


nutshell, less Europe, but better Europe. I think everybody believes


that we are not going to get it from Jean-Claude Juncker. Juncker will be


the next European Commission President? I'm pretty convinced he


will. The truth is Mr Cameron could have come away from this summit with


a success, or be on the road to success, instead he has come back


with a failure. Talking about persuasion, you were the man who on


the behalf of the UK made the case at the UN for the war in Iraq. Now


you see the turmoil of recent week, Syria bombing the borders today, do


you feel any responsibility for that? Of course I feel a sense of


responsibility. I feel a sense of responsibility every day and I think


anybody would. Those huge events in 2003, the invasion, has had some


effect. What we don't know what effect that has had, nor do we know


what would have happened in Iraq except that I think it would have


been pretty awful, had we not removed Saddam. And the frustration


is that after the surge, the American-led surge in 2006/7, there


was a period of relative stability, a real opportunity to bring the Shia


and the Sunni and the Kurds together for a period. It looked as though


that could be achieved, but sadly it has gone the other way. Do you agree


with Tony Blair that there should be targeted and effective, his phrase,


intervention in Iraq, western intervention? I don't think I take


that view in quite the terms that Tony talks about it. I'm much more


sceptical about the value of, for example, drone attacks. They might


work, and it is a matter for the Iraqi Government, principally. But


in Afghanistan drone attacks have not been as forensic as people were


suggesting and you often end up with a lot of innocent people being


killed. Peter Mandelson told Newsnight last week that going into


Iraq was a mistake, honestly made but still a mistake, is your


reflection like that? I put it slightly differently, I have


explained why I made the decisions I made, for which I take full


responsibility. They were right at the time, but had we known then what


we know subsequently, which was for the whole basis of the military


action, which was the threat from weapons of mass destruction, was not


well founded. There would have been no case whatever for entering into


the war. So it was a mistake? In retrospect, yes. What I'm also


seeking to do is not evade or avoid my responsibility, having made that


decision at the time. Take a look at this, an American President watching


the football on TV on air force 1. Air Force One. America didn't beat


Germany tonight, no doubt Obama was devastated, but they are through to


the next round of the World Cup, unlike others I won't mention.


Joining us now from Florida is Rodney Mash, the former England


striker who left in the 1970s to ploy his trade there. And we have


Mark Fisher not so keen. You were there when football was virtually


discovered, and it is catching on now today? Today America was mental,


every television story news was about America, it has just got


bigger and bigger and bigger. It is, at the moment, at least, it is the


biggest thing in town. Mark, the biggest thing in down? I don't know


where Rodney is tonight, but I can say that it is certainly not the


biggest thing throughout the United States. I was talking to people in


Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado, they had no idea this was going on. Do


you think you have seen over time actually people starting to see


soccer as being a more popular sport. More people watch the


Portugal match than the NBA final last week? That's right. But talking


about Kansas and Nebraska I don't think anybody cares what happens in


those states any way. As far as soccer in America is concerned, Mark


is completely wrong when he said that, I will tell you why. After the


England Portugal game, the New York Times first four pages of the sports


section, the first full four pages were all USA soccer. It is enormous


here now. Is it just the Washington Post that is missing out then?


Rodney is hitting it right on the head. The Washington Post is


covering the heck out of this as is the New York Times, this is very


much an elite play in the United States. This is the elite trying to


force down the throats of the Americans a game, it is the same


people who have been yappering on about the metric system for decades


and telling us for half a century that soccer was about to happen in


the United States. None of it is true, there is an elite people


interested and there is a cachet, and you see it in the New York


Times. Forestieri many it remains a dull, boring sport and doesn't hold


a candle to the sports we have. It is unclear why the rest of the world


wants the United States to become a soccer country, we have sports of


our own, every country should have. It is not a sleight against soccer


it is just not a sport for American Americans, it is not a sport that


fits in with our way of life. If you say football is dull and boring to


watch, if you go to an American football or baseball match it goes


on for hours. It is either freezing in the world in the winter or


sunburn in the summer, surely 90 minutes of fast-paced World Cup


action is a bit more interesting than that? Well, Americans tend to


watch sports on television and anyone would admit that soccer is


not a television sport, the field is too wide, it is very difficult to


see the players in any detail. You don't form a bond or identity with


the personalities on the field. And the ball is on television tiny, it


is very difficult to follow on television and it is continuous


action which violate a basic rule of American sport, we just have


frequent bathroom breaks and frequent breaks to get a cold one.


You have a good sense of humour and it may mean that your entire career


to get America to love soccer has failed? Let me make a comparison to


American sports and soccer, he just said that the pitch is too big, and


the field is too big and the ball is too small. Mark have you ever tried


to watch ice hockey on television. You can play for four hours and not


see the puck, the puck is this big you can't see it, it travels at 100


miles an hour and you can't see the puck, and you watch it for four


hours, are you kidding me. Do you think the World Cup is actually a


moment where Americans will take football to their hearts, genuinely,


or is it just the surprise that they have got through to the next round?


I have seen over the 25/30 years, since I have been here, the growth


of the sport. There are so many young kids playing. Millions and


millions of kids. The women's league is big, the women's national team is


fantastic, there is a lot of girls playing. There is a lot of kids


playing, it is getting bigger and bigger and bigger. And God forbid,


listen to me, if the United States should wind the World Cup you will


go mad. We must leave it there I'm afraid. Just before we go, America


may have lost tonight, but they are going through, and fans will have


been cheered to find out about the arrival in Brazil of their team's


new secret weapon. Allegedly Will Ferrell introduced himself yesterday


at USA fan HQ I'm honoured to be playing tomorrow. I'm not going to


lie to you, I'm not in the best shape. If the game gets close I will


bite, I bite the opponent! I'm going to bite every player if I have to.


A chilly night across Scotland, a fresh start here. Elsewhere a warmer


night, not as cold in the morning, but a grey start for England Wales


and Northern Ireland. We are keeping our eye on clumps of heavy,


potentially thundery downpours developing particularly


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