25/09/2014 Newsnight


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

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Tonight from Syria, the exclusive testimony from one British Jihadi


who knew the Brighton fighter, Ibrahim Kamara from Brighton killed


earlier this Queening. He was an ordinary Muslim lad, he knew about


people being oppressed and attacked because they are Muslims and he saw


the solution was Jihad, and Jihad would protect them. These bombers in


the skies above Iraq could be joined by British planes as early as


tomorrow night if MPs approve it. On the eve of the vote we will ask is


the gaping hole in the plan actually the lack of a strategy for what to


do on the ground. The stories of the women who suffered at the hands of


nuns in Irish convants are still being revealed. And only now are


some mothers being reunited with the babies they were forced to give


away. Carmel you don't blame me for anything, I couldn't, it wasn't my


fault. It is an exhibition about slavery


from a renowned South African artist, why has the Barbican bowed


to activists and shut it down. An activist versus a leader of the


campaign. Good evening, we begin tonight with


an exclusive interview with a British Jihadi who knew Ibrahim


Kamara, the 19-year-old from Brighton believed to be killed in an


air strike outside Aleppo earlier in the week. As far as we know that


Kamara, fighting for an affiliate group of Al-Qaeda was killed with a


group of three other nationals. He flew out to Syria and joined a group


of friends in Syria. Brighton, home to Ibrahim Kamara and


three of his friends who also travelled to Syria. He was part of


the Group A l-Nursra, and killed in an air strike. It is an affiliate of


Al-Qaeda but less extreme than Islamic State, and has in places


fought against them. I spoke to his friend also from Brighton, he and


his younger brother are also fighting in Syria with the group. It


is the main base my brother, he came to visit my area, and he stayed for


a few days. Me and him were supposed to go back there to visit the


brothers out there. This happened overnight. The group he was part of


has been accused by human rights groups of acrossties. But Amit said


Ibrahim wanted to help people. He was a funny guy, and wanted to help


people and joked around. I have known him for six years. We used to


go to the gym together. We used to go to the mosque. He was just a


normal Muslim lad. He learned about his duty towards the people that are


being oppressed, and being attacked because they are Muslims, and he saw


the solution was Jihad thank would protect him. Can you understand why


his mother would be so upset, she says he became radicalised? They are


upset for the honour that he has been granted by Allah. Ibrahim has


always asked for martyrdom. He used to say he really wanted it really


bad. But if his family doesn't understand it is because maybe due


to they don't have the knowledge of the virtues of Jihad and the virtues


of martyrdom and sacrifice on the part of Allah. I understand at least


three other men of British origin were also killed? I was close with


them also, but I can't reveal their identity because you know when such


people are known to be in Syria their families get harassed, even


after they are killed. America says that unlike other air strikes these


attacks weren't targeting IS, but a group linked to Jabatha, who they


accuse of plotting attacks against the west? Have you heard of the


group? I only heard it in the media, they had to come up with the group,


and they were quoting America. What they need to understand is that it


is not seen as something beneficial to hit the west from Syria. Because


what that would do is it would close Syria, it would close on the people


inside it and it will close any support that comes outside. The


place where the British brothers were, they were at a recruitment


base where wherever there was a balancele or fight they were drawn


to it. Some people would say they are part of Al-Qaeda, terrorists? I


would say if that is what you think what else can I do for you, you


think that way. The majority of air strikes have targeted IS, who even


other groups have accused of being too extreme. The air strikes against


them could push them together. They are not considered people who have


left Islam, they have left the right way of Islam and the way of the


prophet in terms of extremism, but still they are Muslims. And if the


American allies and America come on ground to fight IS then they should


expect that all the other Muslims will work with IS against the


enemies of Islam. America says it believes all the strikes it has


carried out are important in combatting threats coming from


Syria. And it is working alongside Arab Muslim countries. Ibrahim


Kamara is unlikely to be the only British Jihadist to die, as the


strikes continue. The mother of Ibrahim Kamara has


said she was stunned at how quickly her son was radicalised. That


appears to be a pattern among young Muslim men and women who travel to


Jihad. Nine men including the radical preacher, Anjem Choudary,


were arrested as being part of a banned organisation. Anjem Choudary


once spearheaded a group, Al-Mahujiroun, a group disbanded in


2010. Rachel You have been following Anjem Choudary for many years. What


do you know about the Al-Mahujiroun network? He was one of the founding


members. The nine arrests, including Anjem Choudary as you made clear. A


very controversial figure, but security forces have told me he has


always trodden finely on the right side of the law. Another source told


me, Jihadis told me, amongst serious Jihadi circles he's considered


something of a "fool", he doesn't have a strong reputation in Syria's


Jihadi circles. Finally security forces told me today that the


current arrests in London are not connected with the on going hostage


crisis in Syria. So why arrest them now? Well that is a very good


question. Of course the why now question is absolutely fascinating.


The authorities have known about Choudary's network force 15 years, I


have been following it for about that time myself. The arrests well


really they raided about 19 properties today, they will be


looking for new evidence of fundraising, glorification, or even


supporting people who want to go and fight. Now if there is no new


evidence found WAESHGS just don't know that at the moment. Then a lot


of people will link these arrests to the on going, or the forth coming


bombing strikes against ISIS. It will take extremists off the British


streets, in essence. I think that is a reasonable thing to speculate on.


You talked about hostages, th FBI said that they had identified the


called "Jihadi John", the man responsible for the deaths of


western hostages? Certainly he has appeared in the be heading and


propaganda videos, the FBI have said they have identified him, he has a


London accent, but they have not revealed his identity yet. Britain


is now readying itself for combat in the Iraq calling itself IS. Going


back to the war in the Middle East and carrying out air strikes as


early as this weekend alongside other countries. When MPs finally


vote on the issue, David Cameron will be fairly assured of the


backing of the majority. Only because getting involved in Syria is


for now off the table. As is the deployment of ground combat troops.


Is there a long-term strategy for dealing with IS beyond bombing from


the air. This amateur footing appears to show


an oil refinery, hit last night. The latest strikes by the coalition


against self-styled Islamic State. It is It is far cry from three weeks


ago when President Obama seemed at sea. We are putting the cart before


the horse, we don't have a strategy yet. But suddenly America does have


a plan to curb IS. In Iraq, at least. The approach targets IS on a


number of fronts, from the air by American jets, and from tomorrow


night possibly British forces too. And there are boots on the ground,


not ours, but the Iraqi army and the Kurdish Peshmerga who are getting


training and equipment. The idea is to squeeze them from all sides. But


in Syria things are very different. Yes, there are air strikes, but who


can defeat them on the ground? That appears to be the gaping hole in the


strategy. America plans to strengthen the Free Syrian Army,


shown here in red, and other moderate rebels to fight IS. But the


FSA has enough on its plate, dealing with President Assad's force, which


holds the areas in orange. Washington's plan is to train 5,000


rebel troops over the border in Jordan. But is that enough? Earlier


today I asked the former American ambassador to Iraq whether the west


was wrong to rule out boots on the ground? I do believe that and since


in testimony before Congress last week and said it publicly. It is not


good strategy to tell your enemy up front what you will not do. It is


unreasonable to think that regional states will put boots on the ground,


if we in the west are not prepared to do so. That's only one problem,


the Free Syrian Army is supposed to be in the vanguard against IS, but


they are in trouble. I think over the years we have seen dispute overs


who is leading the FSA, who the main generals are, they have lost some in


battle, others have gone abroad, so this will require restructuring of


force, which is not well structured, and also boosting their more rail,


where the more rail has been very low. The Free Syrian Army has been


pushed back in recent months, in May it finally surrendered in a key


strategic city of Homs. Two years of fighting ended with a one-way bus


ticket out of the city. All sides are now converging on Aleppo,


previously an FSA stronghold. A recent study described the FSA


position as dire. A spokesman said they were fighting hard but


desperate for western weapons. What we need is a real sophisticated


weapons that we can fight and we can face ISIS with. Surface-to-air


missiles to avoid the aircrafts and antitank missiles and more weapons


to put in the hands of freedom fighters. So your message to


President Obama and to Prime Minister Cameron is we need more


weapons and we need them now? That's right. And propping up the FSA, can


it really defeat a fighting machine as well funded and organised as IS?


This is as grave a situation as I have seen in my entire career. The


emergence of the Islamic State, its ability to take and hold ground is


something we have never seen before. So Britain is about to enter the


fray, but just in Iraq, and that is barely half the problem.


General Sir Richard Sheriff has served as commander of British


forces in Iraq 2006, joins us now from a dinner engagment. Thank you


very much for joining us tonight. It is very likely that parliament will


pass this motion tomorrow, and therefore, British warplanes will


fly alongside others in the coalition and the so called


coalition of the willing. Will air strikes defeat IS? Not on their own,


no. They will cause serious damage to IS, but the only way that you are


going to defeat IS long-term is through a strategy and I absolutely


take the ambassador's point about not ruling out anything. You don't


broadcast to your enemy what you are going to do. You have to be clear


about what your end state is. You have to be clear about what the


enemy's centre of gravity is, what is his source of strength. Then you


design a strategy that targets that source of strength through multiple


means. Air strikes are certainly part of it. But I would say that


equally important, if not more important, is the ability to get on


the ground with regional powers and train them to enable them to do the


work. And part of that is certainly going to be done. When you look at


what is up tomorrow, ruling out, going over the Iraqi border, ruling


out any combat troops on the ground. Ruling out as it were a ground


strategy. Why do you think there is this reluctance? I think you have to


ask Mr Cameron that. But it is certainly from a military


perspective, I think we have seen a collective, in a sense a collective


loss of nerve, frankly. A real reluctance to get involved, and it


has not just been in this particular case, but I think perhaps the


impact, the concern, the impact of Iraq, Afghanistan, has come


together, and I think the current Chief of Defence Staff put it quite


well in a speech before Christmas where he talked about in a sense the


concern that character of courage is being lost. I think we are looking


pretty much like Johnny come latelies in the game. If we look


like that, is it partly because after Iraq and Afghanistan that


actually the mood of the British people is not to get involved in the


long haul and not to seek British casualties? I don't know about the


mood of the British people, I think that mood is we probably need to do


what needs to be done. It is certainly the mood of British


politicians though. You were a senior commander in southern Iraq,


as you say, the experience of Iraq particularly was not a happy one in


terms of that intervention. If we need to train and so forth, how do


we need to approach this as a bigger problem in order to solve the


problem of IS? Who needs to be involved? You have to have a


regional strategy, that is clearly coming into place. You need


international legality, and that equally is now pretty much in place.


But you have got to give the, and I accept the notion of a sort of


industrial scale deployment of troops as we saw for Iraq and


Afghanistan is probably not what is required. But what is required and


what mustn't be ruled out is close up proper training and capacity


building. You are talking about the Iraqi army, we saw what happened


with the Iraqi army and Mosul, who literally ran away in the face of


IS. If you are talking about shoring up the Iraqi army, that won't happen


in three months? It is not, and it won't happen. Can it be done, you


were there? And what we must avoid is the mistake that was made last


time round when Whitehall, the British chiefs of staff decided that


to adapt a hands-off approach to training. There is no other nation,


arguably, or very few other nations with the history of training


indigenous forces, it requires the building of trust and confidence,


you have to live and train together. If necessary you have to fight


together. That is the key thing, you cannot rule out British forces


fighting? And a good model, I would fighting? And a good model, I would


suggest is what has happened in Afghanistan.


Well we can go now to our diplomatic editor Mark Urban in the UN in New


York. What have you been hearing about plans for the coalition in


terms of any kind of ground operation? Well there are plans.


Indeed we reported them on Monday, in the sense that there is a clear


sense of who will be providing the air support, but also a clear sense


of who will be providing the boots on the ground. Now that's American


troops and possibly some British in Iraq, in the case of Syria it is


countries like Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates. That


is clear here. The real issues with the strategy is firstly that the


Free Syrian Army, called, is so much behind the Peshmerga and other


forces in terms of its capacity, it will take a lot longer to get it up


to any level in numbers and competence. Then as General Sheriff


was saying, what is the end state and what does victory look like with


the strategy and what does victory look like with


putting forward. That is very hard to define, and must, as the


President himself has been saying, not even be judgeable for


two-to-three years. In your assessment, where do the Iranians


position themselves selves, are they within this coalition or not? That


is one of the most fascinating issues. Iran is clearly playing a


role in Iraq, it has sent in combat aircraft and handed them over, it


has people on the ground trying to stiffen the defences. It is clearly


involved, yet today, earlier, we heard a speech by the Iranian


President in which he tied any further co-operation or closer


co-ordination on this with progress on the nuclear issue. We mustn't


forget in all this headline-making about the Islamic State, this huge


question about could the US and Iran actually become non-adversarial, and


even allies it is all hinged on the resolution of the question of their


nuclear programme. That has been the subject of intensive talks this


week. So far it doesn't look like there is a resolution. As long as


that remains the case, the President will take the line he did earlier


today and this arms length relationship will go on. One other


factor in that, the Saudis are making very big and significant


steps in this. We saw their aircraft in action, bombing targets in Syria.


We know their army will be training the FSA. We think their army will go


into Syria to do stuff on the ground. They may well be saying we


won't be part of an alliance that Iran is. We can explore that


further. Because joining us now from Tehran is our guest from the


University of Tehran, a strong supporter of the Iranian Government


and the Assad regime in Syria. And we have Monzer Akbik, the Special


Envoy for the Syrian National Coalition, a coalition of Syrian


opposition groups and the Free Syrian Army. Just picking up what


was said there. On Newsnight last week we reported a very senior


Iranian commander in Iraq helping the Iraqi army. Is Iran likely to


be, as it were, even an unofficial member of the coalition fighting IS?


First I would like to point out that the description of me is a bit


inaccurate. I think I'm just an associate professor at the


University of Tehran. I think that the Iranians feel that they have


played the most important role in supporting the Iraqi Government and


containing ISIL in the region. Also the fact that the Iranians helped


keep the Syrian Government from collapsing in the face of extremists


and have been supported for four years by a very unholy coalition


between the United States, European countries and extremist regimes in


the Persian Gulf that have advocated Wahhabism. This alliance has gone on


for decades and is basically what has led to the rise of extremism,


not only in Syria but also in Libya, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria


and so on. The Iranian feels that while the United States and its


partners have played an important role the Iranians have played an


important role in preventing destruction. Could you see American


and Iranians as allies in fighting IS? The problem is the Americans


have a very poor track record. In the past the United States has


worked with these countries to support extremists in Syria, and


again now they have this coalition, a coalition of the guilty, which are


the same countries that cause the cat it is catastrophy. These


countries will be bombing Syria. In the past the United States and its


allies disregarded sovereignty and helped create a Civil War. Now they


are also disregarding Syrian sovereignty. Let me ask you, Monzer


Akbik, which is your biggest enemy, is it Assad, or is it IS? Both of


them. Right now there is no priority for us. About ten months ago there


was a war started against ISIS, and we are fighting on go fronts since


then. As we heard from Nick Hopkins, the FSA is in disarray, the


leadership has been disbanded. You have retreated from Homs, you know


in Aleppo you are fighting to the bitter end. You need help and you


have got the Iranians calling you part of the terrorist problem. The


Iranians are actually helping Assad to slaughter the Syrian people into


submission. They are using this narrative that the rebels are


terrorists, actually the rebels are the Syrian people, and they are


being slaughtered by Assad with the help of the Iranians. They are


giving him all the money and the weapons and the fighters to do so.


But you are now going to get half a billion dollars from the Americans,


for arms to train you and so forth? The situation of the Syrian army is


not that dire, but it is very difficult, why? Because we are


fighting on two fronts at the same time, and we are underresourced with


the hardware. It would be fair to say at the moment you are not up to


the job, and yet what the coalition is really doing is putting its faith


in you to take on IS in Syria, is that realist snick We are up to the


job, we have done a very successful job in the past ten months without


the help of anybody. ISIS was kicked out from three or four provinces


before they seized those weapons from Iraq and came back on to the


offensive. We are fighting two months statement and we are


ininflicting a good result with our fight. At the same time, in order to


achieve a strategic advance, there should be changes in the way that we


are armed and the way that we are provided with the ambition and we


need sophisticated weaponry in order to achieve those advances. Now there


is a reason for us to be cautiously optimistic, because we have cover


from the air, from the international coalition, and we have the training


and equipping programme, so now I think the situation will even become


better. Very quickly, can I just ask you whether you think that


supporting the FSA will be an aid to defeating IS in Syria? No, there is


no such thing as the FSA, there are different groups, many of them are


very extreme, they have worked in co-ordination with JabthaAl-Nursra


and other groups on different occasions. The so called Free Syrian


Army is not a united or unified force. If the United States really


had so called moderates f they really wanted to find moderates in


the past four years they would have found them by now. But unfortunately


the United States is... Thank you very much I have to stop you there.


the United States is... Thank you We have Alistair Burt with us, the


former Foreign Office minister. Alistair Burt, I take it you are


behind the motion tomorrow? Indeed. It is ill lodge


It is illogical to join in air strikes with other members of the


coalition and limit them to the Iraqi border and no troops on the


ground isn't a strategy. ? Tomorrow is not covering the whole conflict


with ISIL, it is an opportunity for the United Kingdom to take part in


the first part of the containment strategy that the Prime Minister has


been talking about with others. If we were to have a motion with others


trying to encompass everything I would imagine the conversation would


be different. What the Prime Minister is doing is being able to


get support for attacking so called IS forces in Iraq with the support


of parliament, but that is only one part of what we have been hearing


about which is taking on a struggle about a complex enemy, that is


threatening the region and us in a variety of different ways. It is


extraordinary exactly how much change there has been in a year.


extraordinary exactly how much were disappointed because you


couldn't get support, very disappointed, because you couldn't


get support to hit President Assad last year. Now Britain seems to be


suggesting that you can't actually have air strikes over Syria because


President Assad hasn't asked you in. But the Americans don't have any


qualms about that, so why on earth should Britain? The problem last


year is we had an opportunity to have a response to someone who used


chemical weapons on his own people. The terrorist is Assad, he has


killed 200,000 of his own people. Last year would have been an


opportunity to put something in the balance against Assad and tilt the


negotiations for peace in Syria. A year has gone by. What we have seen


as a consequence of that, the extremists have got stronger,


because they FWHOSHG league with Assad against the Syrian people.


What tomorrow provides is an opportunity for us along with others


to challenge that in Syria and in the rest of the region. What was


also said is the best way to sort this out in Iraq is to work again


with the Iraqi army, shore them up, give them the capability. Meaning


British forces training them and perhaps fighting alongside with


them. Will the Government wear that, will the British public wear that?


We will have to see, we are a long way from that. What will happen


first is the Iraqi Government gains the support of the Sunni community


in Iraq. The Iraqi army have to be strengthened. The people fighting at


the moment are the Peshmerga, and if the United States can provide half a


million dollars support for them, why can't we. That is the ground


support that can then accompany the air strikes and begin the


containment strategy before other actions are needed fully to degrade


what IS is doing throughout the region and us? The film Philomena,


starring Judy Dench, showed one woman's experience of the horror


kind convent calls. It seems the revelations never end. The Irish


Government has announced another inquiry, the sixth into what went on


in the institutions run by nuns for most of the 20th century. The home


for single mothers, the orphanages and the infamous Magdelene L


Laundaries. The discovery that some 800 babies had died at the home and


their bodies put in unmarked and horribly inappropriate graves


shocked the world. It is a sewage tank, why are there children buried


in a sewage area. The subsequent outrage emboldened survivors of the


homes, run by nuns all over Ireland to speak out. There were thousands


of babies born here, there were hundreds of babies died, and I


remember the nuns carrying down the brown shoe boxes to bury the


children. There have been five KWIERNies into Ireland's religious


institutions so far. Now there is another. Into the mother and baby


homes. The survivors say they won't be fobbed off. We have found our


voice and we're not going to be silent any more. They are determined


not least because earlier reports, like that into the Madelene


Laundaries failed to tell the truth. Laundaries where those deemed to


have fallen short of the Catholic Church's strict code were forced to


work, unpaid. At the birth of the Irish state in 1922, a cash-strapped


Government was happy to delegate most welfare duties to the religious


orders. It meant a girl born in a mother and baby home might go on to


an orphanage, aptly called "industrial schools" at the time,


and then on to a Magdelen home, so living her whole life in the


institutions. Questions about the homes were asked when in the early


1990s, the nuns who owned the convent in Dublin wanted to sell the


land, where now there is a car park. The problem was that the plot they


wanted to sell, which back in 1993 looked like an empty green field,


was in fact filled with the bodies of former workers. I tracked down


the gravedigger employed by the nuns to dig them up, and he agreed to


give his first television interview. The nuns were trying to sell the


place, and it was big money, so they didn't want anyone to know what was


going on. It was all hush, hush. We were supposed to tell no-one about


it. The nuns told him there were 133 women's bodies buried in the plot.


So we kept bigging and bigging until we dug out the whole lot, we ended


up with 22 more that we didn't even know were there. So 22 bodies that


the nuns didn't know were there. And he found something else inside the


grave. A lot of plaster of Paris, which was on their wrists, their


arms, their legs, their feet, their ankles, there were broken arms and


broken legs, it seemed to me like. The women were too small, they were


too frail for that kind of work. People were shocked by the tale of


unrecorded burials and broken limbs and began to ask what had been going


on in the homes and why were so many sent there. Like Mary, born in a


mother and baby home and sent to an orphanage, where, one day, she was


so hungry she took an apple from an orchard. The nuns sent her to work


in a laundry in Dublin. They took me to Hyde Park Convent, and they left


me there and said now you stay there until you learn to stop stealing.


How long did that take? I was 14 years there. Did you ever ask why


you were there for 14 years for stealing an apple? I did ask them,


and I asked was I ever going to get out of here, and am I going to die


here. One of my jobs was to help to lay out the women when they died. I


was happy to do it because at least the women were getting out and their


suffering was over. When women like Mary told their stories, people


asked how arbitary detention and slave labour were allowed to happen?


The Government called on a senator, Martin MacAleese to start an


inquiry. When he published his report last year, survivors were


astounded that he didn't report on the conditions at the laundries,


despite the many women who spoke of ill-treatment. Mary told him that


she was so desperate that she broke a window and ran into the town and


begged a priest for help. He raped her. I had never been out in the


world in my life. And I had no idea what was going on, I was crying my


eyes out and I said you are hurting me. Then when he was finished he


said, now, this is between us, I'm going to give you sixpence, and this


is between us he said, don't tell anybody. He said I'm only trying to


help you. The police took her back to the laundry. The nuns didn't


believe about the rape and put her in the punishment cell for running


away. One of the nuns came down and cut my hair to the bone. Then I was


taken up and I was made kneel in a room with all the women there, kneel


down, kiss the floor and say I was sorry for what I did. By this stage


Mary had been there for 12 years. sorry for what I did. By this stage


And was afraid that she might never get out. After all, there were women


who died there. Sue, that was my friend, Mary. She worked for the


laundry for 56 years. And yet, according to the report, the


average, or median duation of stay in the laundry was approximately


seven months. By comparing head stones with electoral rolls, Claire


discovered that for one ten-year period, most women at the Hyde Park


laundry were there for a minimum of eight years. We have looked at


electoral registers from 1954-1964, looking at Hyde park in particular,


he we have been able to show at least 46% of these women from


1954-1964, they never got out. I asked the nuns who


1954-1964, they never got out. I for an interview, but they reviewed,


we called on the headquarters in Dublin. I'm Sue Lloyd Roberts, I'm


here from the BBC, this is a former laundry worker. You have already


sent in a request and you got your answer to that request. Which is no.


We have been refused an interview, but we have important questions to


ask. All I wanted was fleeing somebody to give me an apology for


what happened to me. That is all I wanted. We were clearly not going to


be invited in. Goodbye now. The senator also turned down my request


for an interview. But I was invited to meet with Ireland's Deputy Prime


Minister. When I speak to these women, what they want is the truth


to be told. Well we now have under way the process for preparing a full


judicial report by very experienced judge who was involved. You admit


the inquiry was less than thorough? The MacAleese inquiry was an inquiry


at a point in time. It was recognition for what women had


experienced and gone through. The women said it didn't, because for


example the glossing over of the abuse, theturation of stay? I do


know -- the duation of stay? I do know what is important for a lot of


the women is that they would receive a redress payment. Compensation, or


redress, as it is called in Ireland, is being paid to former laundry


workers. But the Irish taxpayer is footing the bill. The nuns say they


can't afford it. The nuns told the inquiry that they didn't make money


from the lawned Laundries, but we found ledgers showing very healthy


businesses. We have the airport, one of the country's main train


stations, airlines, Government departments, like the Department of


Fisheries, hotel, private individual, convents and seminaries.


No wonder trade unions and commercial owners of a laundry


business complained, they were competing with the nun who is had


free and forced Labour. After they closed the nuns made more money from


property sales. They have asseted estimated at over 1. 5 billion euro,


but refuse to give any to survivors. That is you when you were baby. When


they took you away from me. After Mary was raped she gave birth to a


daughter, Carmel, the baby was taken by the nuns and put up for adoption


and Mary was sent back to work in the laundry. For 40 years she only


had a photo. You have to keep them forever now. I will. I will treasure


them. I will treasure them. They will go into frames. Mary now lives


in the UK. A few years ago with the help of British Association workers,


Carmel found her. Mary is desperate to assure her daughter that she


didn't give her away willingly. You don't blame me for anything? No. God


no, don't. I couldn't, it wasn't my fault. We are not ashamed any more,


we will speak out and fight back. Survivors argue that all the


religious institutions are linked and they should be investigated


together. Justice for our mothers and for the babies that's here. But


the indications are, that when the Government announces the parameters


of the new inquiry, any day now, it will have a narrow remit. They don't


want to join the dots, we believe, between the mother and baby homes,


and the laundries, they want to do the least amount possible. There


were complaints the report wasn't thorough enough. Where. We believe


the same will be the case with the next report. The survivors are


afraid the story will never be told. I want somebody to apologise, the


nuns, the church, the police, somebody to apologise to me, before


I die. Are there limits to artistic


freedom, this perennial debate has been given sharp focus by the


decision of the Barbican in London to pull a major exhibition about


slavery after claims by protesters that the exhibition was offensive,


despite the fact it was previously shown at 12 cities, including the


Edinburgh Festival. Exhibit B, as it is called by the South African


artist, Brett Bailey, involves 12 tableaux that represent zoos and


ethnic displays of the 19th century, that displayed Africans as objects


of scientific curiosity. Here is a clip of it.


Joining me now are the actress in the exhibition and the woman who led


the boycott. First of all, what was the value to you of this exhibition?


RMT The value of the exhibition was it was a piece about dehumanisation


and humans created the base of art. A lot of words were thrown about


chains and slaves, we looked Atajic toweds today in terms of immigrant


-- we looked ed at attitudes today. Looking at the very near under


colonialisation about how attitudes of supremacy lead people to believe


colonialisation about how attitudes they are better and above and can do


whatever they want. Why did you want an exhibition like this shut down? I


didn't want it shut down, I wanted it withdrawn, I wanted the Barbican


to understand it was offensive to the memory of our ancestors and


offensive to the black community, the larger black community that


spoke out. This isn't about individualism, it is about a


collective of people saying actually this has gone too far, we have not


received an apology for what happened, we haven't received


holistic reparations which isn't about money, but holistic


reparations. It was in very, very bad taste to our community. I would


obviously completely disagree with that. I mean I am of Caribbean


descent, I'm a direct descentant of slavery and I didn't feel the piece


was offensive in any way. I thought it was thought provoking and


educational for people. I didn't hear about human zoos until I came


across it, they didn't tell us about that at school. There


the Bronx Zoo up until the 1970s. Across the board anyone objectified


I thought this was a relevant piece for that. Do you think there should


be limits of artistic freedom, isn't it up to artists in way to break


taboos? I think artists are free to create whatever they want. I'm not


the cultural art Pleurx police, I think in this case there were so


many underlying questions. This discussion we are having now, this


should have happened before. It should have happened before. But if


it happened before, presumably you would have felt you wanted to alter


the artist's vision in some way? Not necessarily. You might have been


happy to see the exhibition stand as it is? With the right consultation.


What happened is there is no whiteness in that exhibition, all


there is is black people standing in various cages with chains, they are


very evidently there. Let's take one example that a French colonial


military man used to tie up African women and rape them, and that way


they would get money to feed their children. The dilemma was the


children starving and did they put up with it. Are you saying what you


wanted to do in that example was to have a white representation there? I


think that needed to be there and balanced. Would that be too literal


or not? This is history, these things actually happened, the artist


didn't inthe treatment that happened, whether 200 or 400 years


ago, if black people were used in the exhibitions the first thing that


would have said is this did not happen to white people, why are they


in the exhibition. They did it. Who did it? White people are responsible


for the enslavement and colonialism. You are saying to use them in a


tableaux based on a historical fact. It is the artistic eggs


presidential. It is un-- expression. It is unbald. It is not, it is true.


Do you think there is any relevance in your critque of this that the


artist is white a privileged South African? He is privileged and a


white South African. Does that make a difference to you? It needs to be


questioned what his motives were. If a black person had done this crassly


I would have still gone with the petition. Because it is about


dignity, the dignity of our ancestors it is about their memory.


Do you accept that for some people it might be offensive for this


portrayal? Sorry, it is not a portrayal, this actually happened.


Thank you very much. I am afraid that is all we have time for


tonight. Good night. A windy night across Scotland, rain that should


get blown out of the way. A lot more cloud in southern areas, misty first


thing, but milder to start. That wind though making it feel chilly, I


think, across parts of Northern Ireland and Scotland, compared with


today. So 15-16 as opposed to the high teens, in fact across parts of


eastern Scotland we had temperatures up to 21 today which is


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