29/01/2016 Newsnight


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

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The European Referendum campaign - what kind of fight will it be?


I'll have you checkmated in your next move.


One side has to win it when the vote comes.


We'll look at what kind of argument will clinch it,


and whether the negotiation will make any difference.


Rhodes holds his place in Oxford, but the argument goes on.


Cecil Rhodes, more than any individual in


Cecil Rhodes, more than any symbolises British imperial power


and the racial apartheid and racial violence that came with it in South


Africa. We'll ask if it makes sense


to fight over symbols. Celebrated novelist,


but also - you might not know this, And I've got the


bruises to prove it. Coming soon to a screen


near you, an epic battle - But before we get to the main show,


there's that other drama Now, scriptwriters all know that


to make a gripping plot, And this morning, we were treated


to a suggestion of the latest European offer on the vexed issue


of migration and benefits. It didn't sound like much


of an offer - an emergency benefits brake that other countries have


to vote on. But who knows whether that's


the real state of play, or just a ploy to give us all some


jeopardy and make the final deal What we do know is that


the Foreign Secretary, Philip Hammond, said last night,


that if there's no significant deal on migration, Britain


will vote to leave. So with everything hotting up,


let's get out of the weeds of the current negotiations,


and into the big questions about what kind of fight each camp


is going to conduct. We'll start with Chris Cook,


on referendum tactics and strategy. The EU referendum currently looks


like it could be a very tight race. And so having consulted the BBC big


book of heavy-handed metaphor, I have come to a racetrack. I am


resigned to having to work quite hard for your attention on this


topic. Now both campaigns actually reveal one thing. The average voter


is not very interested by this question. They have not got prior


conceptions in the way they do in normal elections, nor is it as


energising as the Scottish referendum. There are loads to play


for. Many voters have strong views on Europe, but most are just not


watching the minutiae of the Prime Ministers campaigning. Headline


polls are really less useful than usual. Campaigns are conducting


exercises like one that better together did in the Scottish


referendum. They have identified six groups. First, two sort of


Unionists. Two sort of pro-independence voters they could


write off. That left two sort of swing voters from their good fight.


That helped them tailor their messages. Estimates vary between


their being one fifth than one third of voters in play. What messages


might expect to hear? The number one reason we're having this referendum


is probably immigration. That means the strategic challenge for both


campaigns revolves around immigration. If they remain they


have to show they can understand the concerns of voters who have


legitimate worries around immigration. But fur leave, they


need to understand they pretty much have all of the votes of voters who


are Eurosceptic and worried about immigration. That is why senior


people who vote leave worry that... It is very striking by the way that


the in campaign is focusing heavily on security. Today they campaigned


on Europe-wide law enforcement. The campaign is just hotting up. View


our being able to see some of these tried and tested techniques at the


ready, whether it is the cost of staying, the cost of leaving,


complexity, trying to paint the other side as to come to cater to


get to grips with, and also fear. We are seeing some tried and tested


techniques already emerging. Vote Leave see staying in as a 1970s


choice. They say exit would allow Britain to seize opportunity. But


sceptics on both sides have clocked that globalisation is the thing


people do not like, and strength in numbers is an idea that resonates.


Both sides expect the leave campaign will work hard to offer reassurance.


Both sides also expect stay to concentrate on explaining what we


get for our EU membership. Most people do not know. That fight will


decide who ends in first place and who trails behind.


Here with me - the MEP Dan Hannan, who is on the board of Vote Leave,


one of the leave campaigns, and Lucy Thomas, Deputy Director


Let's just start on the negotiation. Lucy, do you think it is going to


make any difference? We're reporting on it every day and does not sound


like anybody is engaging. Is that correct? Most people think the EU is


not perfect, so absolutely right for the Prime Minister to push for


reform and make it better. Like successive Prime Ministers have


done. But fundamentally our case is about the benefits outweighing the


costs right now. Whether that is on security, like the European Arrest


Warrant, free trade, lower prices, those things. But fur people out


there, they want to know what the benefits are and costs are to


address the question. You're not going to make a very big deal of it,


because you think we should be in, regardless? The benefits outweigh


the costs. But I do think it is important to prove that as a member


you can make it better. On the eurozone, that is about the


long-term sustainability of being a member with the best of both worlds


in with the benefits of free trade but not in the single currency. Dan,


I know you do not think very much of the renegotiation. Do you think the


voters will make much of it? No. I cannot imagine there are people


watching thinking, I am really on the fence about this, but a partial


moratorium on benefits claims for four years for migrants, that will


swing it. These are fairly small-scale negotiations. Lucy knows


it. There is one way in which I think it will impact the campaign.


It is the smell of the thing. People will see a British Prime Minister,


the leader of the fifth biggest economy in the world, second biggest


in the EU, touring Europe, begging for the right to tweak is on asylum


rooms -- rules and still getting the brush off. That would tell people


something about the extent of our subordination. To emphasise how


powerless we are? Yes to have raised and dashed expectations will leave


the yes side in a worse position. What is really interesting is, how


do you think that we have more influence and more control by


leaving? Because we take back control of our borders, money,


taxes, our democracy. We have been outvoted more than any other member


country of the EU. Let me come in here. I want to focus, one of the


things I wanted to focus on was the question of how immigration is going


to play. I would imagine you both think migration will be a big issue


through the campaign? Think is one of the issues. But I will go back to


what Dan was saying. This idea that we do not have control now. How is


it that France and Germany are going to give us a better deal when we


just walked out and left? I simply do not understand how we get more


control. We will be an independent country, Lucy, like New Zealand and


Japan. There are 198 territories in the UN of which 170 are not in the


European Union. To me the most interesting question of the whole


thing, and I don't know the answer, is, if we leave, do we get our


border back? Carl Bildt said on this problem the other day if you want


access to the single market you will have two have free movement, like


Norway and Switzerland. This is about control more than migration. I


am quite a fan of controlled legal immigration. I think people in the


country will also want to have a component of refugees coming into


the country. But if you are going to make that argument, people in return


want to know that they are ultimately in charge of who we admit


and about numbers. You have totally avoided the question. Do you expect


Britain will have access to the single market, but will not have


free movement under current rules? Nobody is suggesting we are going to


join Schengen. Every time you mention Switzerland they say,


Schengen. Nobody is suggesting that. I think it would be sensible for us


to have an element of free movement of labour, but I don't think that


should be a pre-judgement of benefits. People coming in as


seasonal workers, that will carry on. It will carry on with people


from outside the EU. There is an issue of fairness. There will be a


lot of Brits of Commonwealth origin who know what a hassle is to bring


somebody over for a wedding because we have had to crack down on visas


to make space for EU nationals. Your weakness probably is immigration.


Daniel Hannan has given a long answer to the question but that has


got to be basically the weak point of your campaign? I am not sure it


is. We have just heard there will be an element of free movement. Leave


does not mean closing the border. If people are try to argue that that is


all leaving means, there is evidence it is not that if we still want


those benefits. Nobody is suggesting that. The personality factor, at the


moment you would like Boris to join your campaign. I would like


everyone. Do you need a big name? The public are probably going to get


lost in the detailed conversation. Do you need a big-name? In the AV


referendum there was not a big-name. In the north-east there was not a


big-name. It is a strength to have people making different argument is


to different constituencies. I do not think you need a single figure.


Because, although we all come together wanting a democracy back,


we disagree about what we would do as Labour, Conservative, green or


whatever. It should be for the British people to decide. Wildie


Prime Minister ultimately lead the in campaign? Let's see what happens


with his reforms and what he decides to do. They will be lots of


different people on our side of the argument, as there already are. We


have huge diversity from the president of the NUS to the former


head of the army, to respected business leaders, a cross-party of


people. Dan's party are fighting each other over who is gone to lead


the campaign. Let's pic on your campaign. Agley both campaigns have


a degree of disarray. Stewart rose seems to beat Wheeldon, not properly


briefed. He was given statistics he does not have to defend because they


are largely thought of as indefensible. And unable to remember


the name of your campaign on sky television interview. I think that


can happen to the best of us. Forget to remember the name of the campaign


they lead? That clip was before he properly started recording the


interview. You got in a tangle over somebody's name earlier in the week.


I can at least remember the name of the programme I am presenting, what


is it to Newsnight. Stewart has led one of this country's best loved and


best named brand. We have diversity on our board who are all hugely


respected and incredible in their own field of who are making the same


argument, unlike Dan's side were fighting each other. Do you agree


that nothing will change the first ten years after we leave? It is on


the record. Talking about disarray, there seems to be on your side of


the argument a tendency for your site to fight each other. You have


got a vote leave. You are on the board. Arguments about whether


Dominic Cummings is running it. What is going on? We have so much


exuberance. We have so many people wanting to do it. In every campaign


there are strong feelings. You have covered in general elections to know


that people, because they want to win, have different ideas. The idea


that we are not pulling together around the general vision of


fighting an upbeat, optimistic, positive campaign about a global


Britain, we are going to come together. Will Dominic Cummings be


an office on Monday? Yes. 20 both.


Cecil Rhodes has triumphed for the time being -


Oriel College says his statue will stay, against the wishes


of the campaign to have him taken down, given his brutal


The argument though has been remarkable.


In a way, it's a bit like the other Cecil -


Cecil the Lion - one of those individual cases that somehow


ignites a consciousness of a far bigger issue.


In this case, it's been the British variant


John Sweeney went to Oxford today to see how contentious


The Latin says roughly thanks to the great generosity of Cecil Rhodes but


others disagree. Cecil Rhodes said... He was a 19th-century


imperialist who made a mint in South Africa. Some students want this


symbol of racial supremacy to be cast down. I do not think that a


statue that symbolises racial violence and apartheid should be


adorning any acronym done Mike academic institution of any


institution that considers itself to be progressive. What it has done


with it I do not really care but I do not think it should be part of an


academic institution. Oxford has decided that Cecil Rhodes is


staying. If you start with smashing the statue, where do you stop? What


about the kings and bishops hanging out with Cecil Rhodes? The


21st-century is not big on statues but it does do legacy. This business


School is evidence some say of the amazing generosity of a billionaire


benefactor, proof according to others that the facilitator is


worried about his immortal soul. It is not just rich men who have have


been buying up chunks of our universities. An imperial power is


at it as well, but that is not Britain. China is being to get its


Confucius Institutes into our academia. LSE has received ?860,000


from the detainees state and that is not all. It turns out they find 29


Confucius centres across the country in universities like Cardiff, eight


Edinburgh and Manchester. Totalling up to roughly ?4 million a year.


Smashing up statues of people you do not bike has always been good fun.


It is how the present gets its revenge on the past. The danger is


if you clean up history too much you may end up forgetting it.


With me now, the historians David Olusoga and Tom Holland.


I would like to generalise this beyond Cecil Rhodes. Is it a concern


you have that there is a tendency in Britain and maybe other parts of the


west to whitewash some of the full things that we did in the past and


that is what this debate is about? The debate has got to the heart of


the fact that the statues are not very good at telling of history.


Telling of the very simple one-sided celebratory history. The image of


Cecil Rhodes that is presented as of his great works. He undoubtedly gave


a lot of money that has done a lot of good but there is another side of


a legend died statues do not give us that. They are not very good tools


for history. It is just a statue. Do you think there is a problem with


whitewashing of colonial past or not? I think we have struggled in


this country to look all the sickly at the colonial past. Some people


want to claim that everything Britain did abroad was terrible.


Then there are people who convince themselves that the empire was some


enormous act, some great global charity that Britain abandoned the


poor of Britain and spent its wealth and treasure going around the world


and was -- worrying about whether India would have a railway. It was


done for profit. Where are we on Empire? A lot of this debate is


really about attitudes to the imperial past. Yes. The debate


demonstrates that attitudes to Empire are divided and essentially


there is a huge conflict-of-interest. I do not think


that the people who are supporting the retention of the statue Kirk


very much about Rhodes himself. I think it reflects a sense that


people have of how we in this country have traditionally done


history. We are not like the French or the Russians. We do not go around


toppling statues because we have the slightly strange attitude to our


history that we have evolved gradually over time. I did not hear


a whimper of discontent at Jimmy Savile in Glasgow. Maybe that is the


exception that proves the rule. In Oxford there was a memorial to fill


Marshal Haig that was put up and got discreetly removed so it does happen


but what you have in Oxford in the examination rooms is a picture of


the Kaiser. With these memorials it is as though you are looking at


fossils in a great wall of sedimentary rock and you can use


them to trace the evolution of our history and that is part of the


fascination. We have Rhodes in Oxford but we have the young Mandela


and the elder statesman Mandela in Parliament Square. That is one


tradition. Britain has two traditions. The domestic and the


colonial and Britain has gone around the world than destroyed thousands


of statues. Missionaries destroyed temples in Africa of the indigenous


people and we went to China and we destroyed one of the great jaws of


China. We went and destroyed another palace and all of the bronzes of the


kingdom. We have another great sideline which is in pinching


statues. The British Museum is full of statues... This idea that statues


are somehow uniquely sacrosanct and unviable for the British might be


true in the domestic sense... Within Britain. His career was not in


Britain, it was in Africa. In a way this gets to the heart of the debate


about other things like the way the language is sexist or other symbols.


Should we focus as much as we do for modern causes on symbols? On


changing symbols? Like statues or words. I think they can be extremely


important. There is a risk happening in some university campuses this


idea that no disagreement or idea that you do not like should be


presented to you. You should love in a safe space. You are not in favour


of that? I am opposed to that but I do not think that is what this


debate is about. Do we go too far? That is quite common to pull down a


statue. These are complex and difficult issues. We live in an age


where an effective hash tag can generate an it I campaign. The


ability of people to harness campaigns is having an impact on the


way in which certain symbols and acting as lightning rods. No one in


this campaign is talking about toppling or destroying statues. This


is not destroying the statue. India has had a great solution. All the


old statues are used to be littered around colonial belly are jumbled


old statues are used to be littered together in a park. None


old statues are used to be littered have been destroyed. Last time I was


that there was a queen or storks have been destroyed. Last time I was


nesting on Queen Victoria. There is a way of diffusing statues.


nesting on Queen Victoria. There is is to accept they


nesting on Queen Victoria. There is history and should stay there. At


Whitehall you have a statue of Charles


Whitehall you have a statue of Cromwell. That seems a wonderful way


of sorting out the problems. Cromwell. That seems a wonderful way


have space for both. Maybe a bigger plaque explaining the context. I


wanted to be contextualised. I want the other side of Rhodes' career.


That is what they seem to be saying they will do. I do not think we will


be arguing about this in a year. But if you want a writer


who really walks the walk, look no further than


best-selling author Before he made it big with novels,


including The World According to Garp, The Cider House Rules


and A Prayer for Owen Meany, Irving kept his young family


by training fighters. He sold well over 12 million books


in 35 languages since. Now 73, Irving's new book,


Avenue of Mysteries, presciently anticipates our current


preoccupations with migration He went 12 rounds with our


punch-drunk palooka, If this is going to work,


we have to keep it quite Not any more because I am


standing on your foot. Hemingway played the macho card


but you have kind of lived it, I competed as a wrestler for 20


years and I coached the sport until I was 47 but I


was disappointed. I was a good wrestler


among better wrestlers. Just as well he was more


of a contender on the page. Irving's new novel follows


the Mexican slum kid Juan Diego who becomes


a successful writer. The book deals with the consolations


and failings of religion. The word got around that he had


taught himself to read. That was how the Jesuits,


who put such a high priority While Juan Diego has always been


suspicious of the man-made institution of the Catholic Church,


of the man-made rules, dictates, policies, politics


of the Catholic Church, he has always been


seeking to believe. For an alpha male of


a writer Irving is much praised by some critics


for his liberal approach to issues 40 years ago I was writing


The World According to Garp where the most sympathetic


and arguably the least sexually volatile or intemperate


person in the novel is the transgender


character in that novel. The treatment, the acceptance,


the tolerance, of sexual minorities, gays, lesbians and transgender


people, is certainly better. The fact you say it


as an issue and a debate still today keeps


the issue alive in my work. Jermaine Greer, who I am sure


you know, said that a transgender I do not take and have never taken


Jermaine Greer seriously. She does not know what


she is talking about. Irving has written more than a dozen


novels and won an Oscar after adapting one


of them, The Cider Irving's new novel concerns


the plight of people in poor countries like Mexico


and the appeal of more I feel very badly for


Mrs Merkel who I believe has tried to do the right thing,


the progressive thing, the responsible thing,


the humane thing, by It is tragic that


among the people who perpetrated that violence


against those women in Cologne has caused this backlash


against Mrs Merkel and against the genuine heartfelt


instinct that you have to help these people who have nowhere to go,


who are in peril, who need to come. Donald Trump, I do not know


if he has resiled from this but he talked about


building a wall to keep I do not take what Mr


Trump says seriously. But I am seriously worried


about the number of people who are angry, as angry,


as ignorant, as misinformed or uninformed or shallowly


informed as he is. The old grappler even pulls off


a somersault leg drop on the American


writer's biggest foe. I never wanted to write


the great American novel. It always struck me as another act


of patriotic extermism that anyone would care to write


a great American novel. We still have some hazards to come


through the night and into


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