29/08/2017 Newsnight


Emily Maitlis presents in-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines.

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This programme contains some strong language.


Tonight, the strongest hurricane to hit the US for thirteen years.


And it's also a test for their president.


As thousands evacuate their homes amid rising floodwaters,


Donald Trump makes landfall in Texas.


Nobody's ever seen anything like this.


Gabriel Gatehouse has followed one family -


As they try to evacuate the most vulnerable from the middle of the


floods. We were in evacuating patients for around three hours.


And we ask the Texan National Guard what measures are being put in place


The PM has defended her foreign secretary.


I've spoken to one figure who said that working with Boris Johnson


is like walking a few feet behind a horse shovelling its shit.


As Japan awakes to nuclear sirens, we look at the country's complicated


Will America rush to defend it now in its hour of need?


The Japanese embassy's gates open in Washington after almost ten years


and the key is handed to Mr Takeuchi and once again the flag


of the rising sun flies as Japan re-enters the community


And they call it whitewashing - white actors have been playing


ethnically diverse roles to please Hollywood for a long time.


But is it what the audiences really want?


Response to natural disaster can make


The shadow of Katrina in 2005 loomed large over the remaining years


His slowness then spoke not just of incompetency - but of priority -


a failure to help the poor and the black communities whose


President Trump may or may not have studied the lessons of Katrina.


But when he landed at Corpus Christie this evening,


There was no talk of ratings, no attempt to re-live the electoral


He sounded like a man who didn't want to speak too soon -


We'll congratulate each other when it's all finished.


The rising floodwater of Houston has left thirty thousand seeking


emergency accommodation - another 40 centimetres of rainwater


And the fear is that the risk of flood may now


stretch to Louisiana - even Mississippi.


Gabriel Gatehouse is in Texas for us - what's the latest?


Emily, this is the sixth day in a row that Houston has been consumed


by Harvey. The rain has abated a little bit but it is still spitting


and raining hard elsewhere and as you can see behind me the rivers are


still rising. We are expecting the rain to stay over Houston until


tomorrow and then move on to Louisiana. This is a record for


rainfall from a single cyclone in the continental United States ever.


Some places already recorded 50 inches and they are expecting more.


A Lebanese South West of Houston has been breached and


residents were told to get out immediately and there have been


other mandatory evacuations which have been made difficult by the


conditions on the roads which we saw ourselves, they are often flooded.


Texan authorities have said at least 13 people have been killed including


a policeman who was killed while driving to work. The biggest


challenge is the sheer number of people who need evacuating. We


reached here last night and ever since then we have been watching


those rescue operations in action. The rescue efforts continue day and


night. The highways are a good place to be, out of the water. Out of the


darkness, they bring another boatload of people. They are


evacuating an old peoples home, just the last few elderly residents to go


now and the rest of the staff. We are going to take you back off this


thing and put you back on the ship. They have seen floods before, but


not like this. These are some of the those fragile people, uprooted in


the dead of night, in the cold and the wet. Still, this is Texas.


People are strong and mostly cheerful. We waiting long? I am one


of the nurses, we were evacuating patients for three hours. It sounds


scary. It is fine, we were coordinated and got the patience out


and now we are safe and everyone is fine. Daybreak reveals more deluged


neighbourhoods. Thousands of people had already fled their homes before


the waters rose, but many stayed put. What was it like watching the


waters rise? It was the scariest thing we have ever seen. Just, there


are no words for it. This is just devastating for everyone, it is so


sad for everybody. You know. You going to be all right now? Yeah. And


all the family is OK. Yes, sir. So, an amateur flotilla has come to get


them. Boat owners from across Texas and beyond. Some have been called


out on a specific mission. Where are you going? We are trying to get some


elderly men who cannot walk. We're trying to get to him. Is he a


personal family member? My daughter is a schoolteacher. It is the family


of one of her students. It seems that the water is still rising. So


many people have to get out and I hope everyone is listening. It is


not one -- weather, your property is not worth it, your family is the


only thing that is worth it. Others are working as very men. Get ready


to hop on. Spending hours in the water taking complete strangers


across particularly deep and treacherous stretches. It is further


up. It is difficult work with hidden debris submerged beneath street


turned into torrents. The rain is carrying on, the water levels are


rising and these streets have now got crazy Cross currents that we


have to speed across in order not to get swept sideways. As the waters


continue to rise, the authorities have been swamped by calls for help,


hence the community effort, with all manner of craft, jet skis,


inflatables, even a paddle boards. Hurricane Hardy reveals Texans are


the most resilient. This man in his kayak not fleeing home, just off to


do some shopping. You're going to get gas and then going back? Yes. We


need gas. Brave business. You don't want to evacuate? No, we need gas


and some more but -- food. Even as the waters advance, it is not easy


to leave your home. We heard some people screaming, from our


neighbourhood. We were woken up by the screams of people who were


trying to get out because they got stuck. His street may have turned


into a river, but this man will take his chances for now. We did not know


if they were going to open the dam, but I am not sure and then we


thought the water was going to come into the house and I don't know, we


woke up and we saw the water was down a little and we were happy. In


these politically turbulent times, America can seem desperately


divided. The disunited States. But it does not they like that here in


Houston, as people help each other through this crisis. Let us go back


to Gabriel. It is hard to tell on the individual level, but does it


feel like crisis on the same sort of scale as Katrina? Not at the moment.


Even though an anniversary just past of Katrina in 2005, I think this


feels different. For one thing, we have only had 13 people killed,


reportedly so far, Katrina had over 1800. Whether that was something to


do with infrastructure or to do with the fact that the authorities have


learned from it. There was some criticism that the mayor of Houston


did not order a more general evacuation and I think people have


pushed back from that and what we are seeing is that this has been


quite well dealt with by the authorities, as we can see from the


relatively low numbers of casualties. Obviously, still very


big, but relatively low compared to Katrina. Then there is the political


element. You mentioned Donald Trump being very restrained and guarded in


what he said. He said when he came to Corpus


Christi where Hurricane Harvey first made landfall, he said we want to do


this better than before and this suggest that he has Katrina in his


mind and he wants to do a better job. We should say that hurricanes


are unpredictable, this is early days, this President is also


unpredictable, so let's watch him. Thank you. We are joined now by


Colonel Steven Metze from the Texan National Guard. It sounds like


things are getting harder now, not easier, is that your assessment and


how are you coping? We are definitely seeing the situation


changed so much that that is one of our biggest issues right now. I


talked to some people, some of our troops on the streets right now and


they said you can literally drive down a street that is fine and come


back one hour later and it is under six feet of water. The fact that it


keeps changing, we are far from out of danger. We still have people who


need to be rescued and I think we still have a long way to go. What


would help but now in concrete terms aside from the elements? The biggest


thing, we are here to support state, local and federal agencies where


they need us. If people are in imminent danger, that they call 9-11


and that is life limo or eyesight, if they otherwise go to one of the


other sites that put you in the other cute, and you don't call the


National Guard directly, we are taking our cues from them. As long


as people continue to communicate their needs through the right


channels then we will get the message the right way and be able to


prioritise where we move people. There was a lot of discussion about


whether mandatory evacuation would make things easier or more


difficult, do you think the choices made fee like the right one or do


you think more should have been done earlier? That is a complicated


decision, made by the local authorities. Our focus is the Texas


military Department is what we can do now. Our number one security is


safety, security and protection of life. Texas I know has a large


number of people who are clinically obese, has that had an impact on how


fast you and the rescue workers can work? I have not heard anything on


that issue in particular, I know that we are rescuing people with


health issues and that is where a lot of our focus is, people who


cannot get to shelters on their own for whatever reason. I do not know


how much of it is that issue or others, I have heard about diabetics


with that the medicine and people with broken legs, elderly people,


people on rooftops, from my point of view, we are hearing that a lot of


people need to be rescued because they cannot move on their own, but I


do not know how many people have that issue. In Louisiana, they are


telling people Tuesday in their homes, does that feel like the right


call to you now? If the local authorities have not said to


evacuate, then staying in the home is the thing to do until you proceed


a threat to your life, limbs or eyesight. Going out into waters


where you do not know where the danger spots are, whether Mike the


electrical lines or other dangers, put you and your family at risk.


Take your cues from the local responders, they know the area and


they know where it is safe to go. We were talking about President Trump


landing in your state earlier, what is the most helpful thing that he


can say or do right now for you? I think, what we have seen across the


board is an incredible amount of support for our chain of command.


Everyone has been supportive, everything... We are seeing a


constant influx of people and equipment, we are seeing it from


local agencies, Red Cross, other agencies, all of them are all


working together right now and the level of cooperation that we have


seen and the level of support from our chain of command has been


amazing across the board. I appreciate your time, thank you.


The Prime Minister has had to defend her Foreign Secretary


today after scathing criticism - albeit some anonymous -


declaring him a national and international joke.


Asked if Theresa May had full confidence in Boris Johnson,


But the briefings around his competency, his commitment


and his trustworthiness have been rumbling all summer.


Could today's devastating column in the Times -


or any of the other voices joining the chorus - embolden the PM


to sack a man she is known to have little time for?


Here - with some bad language - is our political editor, Nick Watt.


Boris Johnson, a showman for the cameras, although usually with mixed


results. Our Foreign Secretary's habit of ending up in scrapes his


prompting questions about how long he can last. But is Boris Johnson a


hopeless buffoon or is he actually a statesman of the New World order who


axed and communicates in a way befitting these times? We are now


able to fly the Union Flag once again. And perhaps that new style is


all too much for diplomatic grandees from the past, most of whom can


never forgive his role in taking the UK out of the EU. One withering


assessment was penned last week. The intervention by the former head of


the Foreign Office unleashed a flurry of criticism.


Over in Brussels, they have long memories of the man they remember is


the Daily Telegraph's troublemaking correspondent. It is always


wonderful to talk to him and he is a very intelligent man, we like in


Germany his Churchill biography. But we are not very clear that we can


really rely on what he will do next day. He sometimes has in Europe the


image of a gambler. And that he is taking this question sometimes not


so seriously. When we note that in a discussion about the referendum and


after David Cameron's negotiations in Brussels that nobody was sure,


probably he himself, if he would be for Brexit or against Brexit. Boris


Johnson inspires mixed emotions here at the Foreign Office, he does have


a fan base among some officials who love having a star as Foreign


Secretary who is instantly recognised in chancelleries across


the world. Detractors say those counterparts lightning got for his


autograph do not taken seriously and in fact snigger behind his back --


lining up for his autograph. That is not all. There are some in the


Foreign Office who say Boris Johnson is a liability as Foreign Secretary.


I have spoken to one figure you said that working with Boris Johnson is


like walking a few feet behind a horse shovelling its shit. No doubt


that arresting metaphor will register with a thoroughbred


wordsmith like Boris Johnson. All eyes are Boris Johnson blame Remain


supporters in government for seeking to undermine the Foreign Secretary I


leaking highly damaging and what they regard as erroneous stories


that he cannot be trusted with intelligence. One old friend insists


that criticisms are wholly without foundation. The reality is if you


talk to the Iraqi Prime Minister, the Kurdish Prime Minister, the


Libyan politicians, South America, Asian politicians, they are all


ambassadors around the world to say he is one of the finest Foreign


Secretary is we have had. I have worked with him closely in the


Middle East, he can master a brief literally in half an hour and get


off a flight and engage with our friends and partners and allies in a


very constructive way and, when making them feel really good. One


great thing Boris can do is make people feel good and he has done


that on the world stage, I think. As a politician who sees himself as


a fine figure of a statesman, Boris Johnson will continue to bestride


the world in his own unique manner. Others are braced for incessant


clearing up operations. Their Scottish Labour leader Kezia


Dugdale has just announced her resignation, a bit of a surprise.


Yes, one of the youngest party leaders to resign, Kezia Dugdale in


her mid-30s and she has announced she is going to be resigning with


immediate effect to pass on the bat on to another generation. This is an


interview she has done with BBC Scotland, Brian Taylor. This is a


shock, Kezia Dugdale is symbolic of that new generation, that new way of


communicating in Scotland, Ruth Davidson the leader of the Scottish


Tories and Nicholas Torry June the SNP leader, they tease on Twitter.


They communicate in a new way. The Labour Party in Scotland had a much


better expected result in the general election and came back from


nowhere to get 11, 12 seats and they could be on their way to another


bounce back. You could say Kezia Dugdale surely has had a success at


some supporters of Jeremy Corbyn have said, you are incredibly


critical of Jeremy Corbyn and that election result we had in June, that


was downed Jeremy Corbyn and not you. Do you think that is what this


is about, a falling out, or is it more subtle? I think there is


interesting politics going on, there is an assumption her successor will


be Neil Finn Lay, who is more on the left, although Allan Smith won the


Labour leadership contest in Scotland against Jeremy Corbyn.


Kezia Dugdale recently announced she is in a relationship with an SNP


member and they have been on a trip to the United States and they fell


in love and it was really touching. But there has been under the scenes


criticism at Holyrood from Labour SNP is saying, you want to be


candidate for First Minister, Labour First Minister? And some people in


the Scottish Labour Party are saying that Kezia Dugdale has faced quite a


lot of pressure even though people were delighted about the romantic


story. Nick, thank you very much indeed.


Well, Japan may have other things on its mind this week


beyond the minutiae of a possible trade deal with the UK.


Residents in the northern island of Hokkaido were awoken this morning


by sirens warning of a ballistic missile launch from North Korea.


The first to fly over Japan since 2009.


Within three minutes of the weapon being fired,


Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had gathered his officials.


Six minutes later, the missile - travelling at around


7,500 miles an hour - had hurtled beyond


Japan is, of course, no stranger to nuclear assault.


So what effect will today's test flight have on Japan's


own militarisation, and its ability to depend on others to protect her?


It was in August 1945 that the US changed the history


The two atomic bombs dropped on the Japanese cities


of Hiroshima and Nagasaki killed an estimated 150,000 people.


Japan had no choice but to surrender.


A pacifist constitution was drafted, as punishment


It prevented Japan from having a military, even after it


Over the years, Japan's self-defence forces have grown, as the perception


The end of the Cold War and rising tensions with China in particular


mean that Tokyo now finds itself amongst the world's


In May, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe set a target to modify


the constitution's so-called 'peace clause' by 2020.


Moves away from pacifism, though, are not accepted lightly.


Two years ago, when Mr Abe pushed through a law that would allow


Japanese troops to fight overseas for the first time since


the Second World War, it drew mass protests on the streets


Nevertheless, Japan is the only country to have


suffered a nuclear attack - one that went deep into


In 2016, Barack Obama became the first serving US


Controversially, he offered no apology, but said the memory


But at 6am local time, a missile was fired over Japan


from near the North Korean capital, Pyongyang.


It flew over the Japanese island of Hokkaido, before


For the Japanese, this may be a game-changer.


The last time North Korea did anything like this


Then, it stymied any rapprochement with Pyongyang.


This time round, the sound of sirens in Hokkaido will embolden


military hawks in Japan, and Donald Trump's refusal to play


the role of world policeman may leave Tokyo no choice but to listen.


The UK's former Ambassador to Japan, Sir David Warren.


And in Washington, from Shihoko Goto, who is a senior associate


Shihoko, does Japan still enjoy being a pacifist country?


Well, there is certainly a disconnect between what the Prime


Minister of Japan once and what the public wants. The Japanese Prime


Ministers Shinzo Abe has been pressing for changes in the


constitution so Japan can play offence, especially in light of the


new development in North Korea which will only strengthen it. But there


is a lot of public hostility, even today, about Japan increasing its


military capabilities. You said Japan has suffered a nuclear strike,


the only country to come and a nuclear attack not just once, but


twice. And Japan is also unique in the world insofar as its forces have


never faced any casualties since the end of World War II, so no body bags


in Japan since 1945 and a lot of Japanese want to keep that.


Extraordinary legacy for a country to have that. So do you think Shinzo


Abe will now succeed in changing the constitution bluntly, do you believe


that Japan is on track to go nuclear, what is your sense? There


is two issues. The nuclear issue is a highly unlikely issue because


under several international treaties, Japan is unable to nuclear


race. But in terms of increasing its military spending even further,


increasing its ability to operate overseas and perhaps even strike


down North Korea's missiles going overhead, that is certainly


something that will be entertained. The problem is that Abe's and


support domestically has weakened rapidly over the last few months and


so even though as he has said he wants to make changes in the


constitution over the next few years, that is going to face a lot


of difficulty. I say that because changing the constitution requires


the approval not only of the upper house and the lower house, two


thirds majority, but it also requires a public referendum and the


majority of Japanese need to support that. As we know from the British


experience, public referendums are often difficult to gauge. David,


Japan, if it chooses to remain pacifist, relies on other countries


to come to its defence. As America, in your opinion is the one of those?


I believe that it is, I believe with Shihoko Goto this may embolden hawks


in Japan who like Shinzo Abe want to see Japan's self defence forces


become more militarily -- defensive. There is not a groundswell of


popular support in Japan for that move. When you hear Donald Trump


memorably talk about America first, how he did not want to be the


world's policeman was quite critical of Japan on the election trail, is


he really now going to come to defend Japan in its hour of need? I


think Prime Minister Abe has positioned Japan skilfully with


President Trump, both as crucial to the President's economic agenda


because Japan is a major investor in America and crucial to its security


agenda in terms of maintaining stability in North East Asia. The


worry about President Trump is he is volatile and unpredictable and his


tweets and public statements inspire as much concern and fear as they do


reassurance. But I do not think Japan has many options but to double


down on the Alliance. Is that right, do you sense America is still the


glue that keeps this region in its place, away from war? Whether or not


the United States and its commitment to that role remains strong and


Trump remains to be seen. But certainly, expectations from Asia


and in Japan as well as in Korea, that remains very strong. British


eyes very much on Japan now, with the arrival of Theresa May who is


looking for presumably affirmation that there is a world outside of the


EU for trade, will she finds that, will she be received well with that


in Japan? She will be received well by the Japanese because our


relations with Japan warm and close. Japan is a major trading partner for


Britain, we export ?10 billion worth of goods and services a year and an


even more important provider of investment in the UK with hundreds


of thousands of jobs depended on Japanese companies. What the


Japanese will be looking for from Theresa May is reassurance we will


not fall off a cliff edge over Brexit and that these Japanese


companies in the UK will continue to enjoy the same frictionless access


to the single market and the customs union that they do at the moment.


Talk us through how the language will work. Make to something? The


Japanese government produced a detailed paper where they set out


clearly what they wanted to see in the negotiations and they have


pressed for transparency and cleared -- clarity since then. They are


worried about the principle of Brexit if it means that Britain does


not have access to the single marker without friction. They are too


polite to say so publicly, they are puzzled to why we have taken what


they see as a result -- and action of self harm. Theresa May may want


to pursue a free-trade agreement with Japan when Britain is able to


do so when we leave the European Union. But Japan I think has higher


priorities in that area, in terms of pushing the EU Japan free trade


agreement over the line and salvaging as much as they can from


the Pacific free-trade agreement that President Trump has pulled out


of. Thank you. Critics call it 'whitewashing' -


the Hollywood practice of casting white actors in roles of characters


of a different ethnicity. Today, the British actor Ed Skrein


announced he was leaving a remake of Hellboy,


after his appointment sparked fury it should have


gone to an Asian actor. He bowed out, saying he didn't


want to continue a worrying tendency of obscuring ethnic minority stories


and voices in the Arts. And that seems pretty


easy to understand. And yet, if we welcome


the new female Doctor Who, or a black James Bond,


or a woman playing Shakespeare's Kings,


then shouldn't - purists argue - we move past the confines


of character and cast who we want? I'm now joined from LA by comedian


and actress Jenny Yang. And with me in the studio


is Metro's Chief Film Critic Very nice to have you both. Jenny,


Ed Skrein dropped out of this, was at the right thing to do?


Definitely. Ed Skrein finally made the move we have all been waiting


for. Someone got a high-profile part that originally was a character for


an Asian character or a non-white character and a white person was


cast and they finally said, I am not going to take this role because


representation matters. He could have checked it on Google before he


accepted the role. It would not have been hard to


find out. Probably not. At this point when no one else has ever done


this, when it came to recent history of Asian characters, we will


appreciate Ed Skrein for what he did and I hope you set an example for


the rest of Hollywood, both on the front end when you are making the


deals and going through the casting process and also in the final


moments when you are saying, yes, I will take this role. Jenny, before I


finish this, do you think there is a problem specifically with Asian


characters in Hollywood, rather than black characters, do you think


Hollywood has a particular Asian problem if I can put it like that?


You know what, I would say that Hollywood like many


other institutions of power has a lot of problems when it comes to


representing bodies that are not typically able white male or


straight. Asians tend to be more invisible sometimes than you think.


Because of the power of Hollywood in our global culture, I think it is so


important that we really advocate for the kind of roles that will


represent Asian-Americans or bodies as whole people. Hollywood does this


presumably because they think that is what audiences want, do they? I


think we are realising that they do not want this. You have to look at


the people making these films, Hollywood is run by old white guys


and they think that what everyone wants


to what is them representing themselves and the audience,


everyone always said, the only people who watch films are white


guys between 18 and 30 and that is because the films they been shown is


like that. You have a film like wonder woman becoming a smash hit


and it is finally giving women and little girls what they want. They


want to see super-heroine. How far would you push this? The question I


raised before, if we now accept that Doctor Who can be a female or James


Bond can be black or Fiona Shaw can play Richard the second, then don't


you say, this is about a character? It is not about ethnicity race or


gender? I take that on and I think lots of actors would agree but


ethnic actors do not have the luxury of choice. There are very few parts


available for them so them getting taken away by white actors, when


they are supposed to be in place of equality, it is not equal. A


reminder of that phrase that Samuel L Jackson used when he criticised a


British black actor for playing a black American cop. Where does that


end up when you are saying, you have to have the right race and colour


and are white men allowed to play straight men, they are actors,


right? Let us be real. There is no one high Council of people deciding


what is OK when it comes to diversity casting. A lot of this is


very negotiable. This is culture and art, some of the soft stuff we argue


over and I would say, because of the rise of technology and Twitter and


Facebook and YouTube, we have a greater say, beyond the traditional


gatekeepers to say we will not accept white folks only been


all of the characters. Let's have some more colour or invoices or


nuance and I think to argue over whether or not a British black actor


can play an American black character, we are talking about


crumbs here. What is the bigger picture? It is about more diversity


in our stories, more actors getting more roles. It is the bigger picture


it that you have to do this around the back of Hollywood, I am thinking


of something like big little lies where Nicole Kidman and Reese


Witherspoon, from what I understand, got together and made that script


themselves, because they wanted the Pirates, is that the answer? There's


a difference between people making their own films and you see this in


Hollywood with older female actresses like those actresses who


have now got that credibility setting up their own companies and


that will be the big change when you have black and ethnic minority


actors making films, not just starring in them. Does that actually


shot Hollywood out of the picture or are we a long way from that? Let us


be real. Just because Ed Skrein said I am not going to take this Asian


character part, it is not a radical move, he has just been a decent guy


who says I think representation matters. Above all of this, we have


a whole movement of Asian American creators, disable creators, queer


creators and we are making our own work and hopefully someday, the rise


in the tide of our creativity will affect Hollywood property --


properly. Great to speak to. Thank you for coming in. The Guardian


tomorrow has weaker pupils dumped by top grammar. Schools accused of


unlawfully throwing out sixth formers who did not get the required


grades and AS-level is to improve their results. It has got a picture


of Milan near Trump in those shoes that no one on social media can take


their eyes from. Apparently she did change their high heels before she


landed. The daily Terror that, but in steering at Michel Barnier, the


EU negotiator tells EU to behave -- the Daily Telegraph. The Times


follows up on the story from yesterday, the judge ruling that the


child must leave unless foster home the paper says it has been praised


for exposing the tower Hamlets council failure.


Until recently, the country of Georgia remained one of the last


nations where drone pilots could fly in relatively unregulated skies.


In a few days, they will adopt European-style flight restrictions,


so photographer Amos Chapple took advantage of the final frontier


of photography and took these images of the country.