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tv   BBC Newsnight  WHUT  December 9, 2012 8:00am-8:30am EST

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>> in a tragic turn of events, the nurse who took a prank call j'sm two australian these day about the duchess's condition has been found dead. she was a well respected member of the staff who had been the
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victim of a hoax. >> it was a prank call to a hospital three days ago, which its makers thought would be funny. at 9:30 this morning, police were called to nurses' accommodations, where they found the body of the mayor'nurse. the hospital had been supporting her through this difficult time. diligently scared for hundreds of patience. everyone is shot by a much loved colleague. in a statement from st. james's palace, the statement said, was look after so
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well by everyone at the hospital." the prank call was made by two australian radio presenters. they work for a sydney radio station called today fm. the station has offered its deepest sympathies. the nurse was on night duty at king james hospital. at 5:30 on tuesday morning, the prank call came through. she answered it and was taken in by the callers' impersonation of the queen. she was put through by a second nurse who was monitoring the duchess. the nurse had not been disciplined or suspended as a result of what happened. the nurse was married with two
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children. >> now to the pressing economic deadline facing the united states, which has global implications. the fiscal cliff, a combination of tax increases and spending cuts. right now there is a political standoff, which the head of the imf, christine largarde, has a duty to stop. >> the fiscal cliff -- when you talk to people around the world, how concerned are they about the ramifications of americans going over this cliff? >> people around the world are concerned about it. it used to be the case that they were more concerned about the eurozone than the fiscal cliff. now things have changed. they often ask about it and its resolution. >> what do you think the impact could be globally?
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we're looking at a time when the global recovery is fragile at best. >> the u.s. is about 20% of the global economy. if the u.s. suffers as a result of the fiscal cliff, a complete wiping out of its growth, it is going to have repercussions around the world. if the u.s. economy has two% less growth, it will probably be a 1% less growth in mexico, canada, in europe, and japan. there will be ripple effects. >> are you worried about this? >> yes. of course i worry about it. the u.s. is a big chunk of the global economy. it has often been a driver of growth. to have that large player
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virtually shut in a recession would be bad news for the rest of the world. we do not think that's at the moment. we do not want to have this effect on a french our recovery. >> what would your message be to members of both parties on capitol hill and to the white house? >> i would say focus on the real issues. the real issues are the united states and its leadership role in the world. the u.s. has an economic leadership in the world. to protect that and make sure that that leadership in tourist, the uncertainty has to be removed. if you are speaking from a strong position because you have dealt with your own issues, then you can advise, help, and encourage. but if you speak from a week
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position, it is more difficult. >> you have warned about the risks of playing political games with the fiscal cliff. what did you mean? >> what i'm advocating is -- please try to take a higher view and look at the broader horizon. from a geopolitical plenty of. >> you think that is what is happening? political games? >> i had been a politician in a previous life and i know what it is like. there is a lot of posturing, position in, negotiating. i dearly hope that the practical views have been taken by the americans in general would prevail. >> obviously you have a lot of experience with negotiations in europe. >> they are big boys and they can negotiate without my help.
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>> imf chief christine largarde. >> the country's vice president hinted that a referendum on the constitution could be postponed if it was done in a legally acceptable way. the bbc is in cairo on the street talking to protesters. >> a moment of private grief on a day of public emotion. this was the funeral service of three men killed in clashes of opponents of a party that draws its inspiration from islamic principles. despite their call for calm, once outside, religious fervor and political determination make for a heady mixture.
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she feels that her compatriots have forgotten her liberal ideals. >> do you think they are wrong to oppose the president? >> ever run has the right. but why do they kill them? expose and stand and shout, but do not kill innocent people. >> the men may have been innocent, but now they have achieved heroic status. >> what we're hearing is the language of martyrdom. an elected government brought down by those who oppose it. it is a sign of just how polarized it has become. at the heart of the crisis is the president and his recent decree, giving himself immunity from judicial scrutiny. use the powers to rush through
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the constitution and call a referendum. tonight, thousands of opposition activists gathered outside the presidential palace. in a senior reminiscent of what happened when the bark -- mobaric was toppled. here they have their heroes and those they call martyrs, with the same at the keys asian -- the same accusation, that the revolution has been hijacked. >> he has put himself above the law. he has done everything to bring down his legitimacy. >> so a country that has once united against the dictatorship is now divided about how best to replace it. >> the unrest in egypt to the civil war that shows no signs of stopping in syria. today hillary clinton said the
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president's departure would be key to any transition. as efforts continue, so, too, does the blood shed on the ground. a prison in damascus is where some of the opposition are being held. this is the report. >> the soundtrack of the damascus state is shelling. the regime has the heavy guns. they are the first thing you hear in the morning and the last at night. armed rebels are dug into parts of the center around damascus. this is one of them. the rebels who filmed this and any civilians who have not managed to escape are being shelled steadily in the last few days.
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the shells keep the rebels back from the strategics strong point. the bbc was invited to visit its detention center run by air force intelligence. we were not allowed to see the cell blocks. human rights groups say tortures happen here. they paraded six male prisoners. the men said they were not speaking under arrest. the government, who would not be filmed, said they were making the wrong assumptions about syria's secular state. none of the men had been in court that. all have confessed to being in the hottest, al qaeda-style group -- jihadist, al qaeda- style groups.
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>> they produced the algerian passport of a man who said he was also a french citizen. >> i decided to do something for the children of syria, for the families, for the powerless. i decided to join the jihad rather than crying in front of my tv. >> he would not answer when i asked if he had been tortured. all of the others said they had not. two said they were part of the front which the americans might soon name as a terrorist group. i cannot vouch for what they said. one repeated how well they had been looked after. but a trip to district 86 in damascus explained by the regime
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led us to the jaw hotteihadists. foreign diplomats say jihadists operate as a small part of the armed rebellion. turning lives upside-down and ending them. it is hard to say what is going through the mind of president assad at the moment, but what is certain is that his regime is under more pressure than at any time. bbc news, damascus. >> for more on the white house's handling of egypt and syria, let's start with "new york times" -- ""new york times""
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chief correspondent. it seems as though the white house's in boxes overflowing with middle east crises. two weeks ago it was cause of. now you have egypt and syria. where can the administration exert influence? >> in syria there is not a huge amount of influence right now. there is probably a tipping point at this moment and they are doing whatever they can out. you heard hillary clinton talk about that. but they have some concerns not only about whether he leaves but what happens to the country after he leaves. the question least assistant and washington usually, but it is being asked in this case -- and then what? if the chemical stores fell into the wrong hands, you could have a problem that could spread out. at this point the question is
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does seery app implode or explode? >> the red line on syria's use of chemical weapons seems to be shifting. why? >> in august, president obama said his calculus would change if the chemical weapons were moved or used. this week we have heard many warnings against using them. it appears that some have been moved and the more worrisome concern is that some may have been mixed into a form that you could use for actually dropping them as a weapon. we do not know quite how urgent that problem is and there have been conflicting reports on that, but you have not heard president obama repeat the warning against using them. i think, in part, that is because they do not have a lot of leverage for getting in around those sites. they depend on circuits.
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surrogates. >> the think the u.s. is urging each of's leaders to delay a vote -- egypt's leaders to delay a vote? >> he put forward to the people of this constitutional change which would seem quite strong. the irony is that president obama, having contributed to pushing mubarak out, is now facing the same problem with dealing with the man himself, which is what do you do when you desperately need an allied who was useful during the conversations with the moss a few weeks ago, but who is advocating a fair bit -- advocating a fair bit of power
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to himself. >> still to come, if you have a flair for adventure, we have just a journey for you. get ready to pack for the moon. aid workers in the philippines are still trying to rescue people trapped in the flood waters days after a typhoon. more than 500 people are known to have died. close to 400 are still missing. makeshift evacuation centers are overflowing with people. more than 300,000 have left their homes. the country's president flew into the southern island and bore the brunt of the storm. >> a life turned upside down. in the schools that have now
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become evacuation centers, the people cannot quite take and the enormity of what happened. their reliance on government and aid agencies for basic supplies. >> we are hoping to get financial assistance. and rice. people have nothing to eat. >> buildings are damage, many beyond repair. votes and barges have been destroyed. even banana trees have not inspired. they were the main source of income for many people here. >> i want to account for those were still alive, if they still are, to reach them as soon as possible. i want to know why this tragedy happened. >> people here want to know why it happened too.
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very few are as strong as this one, but right now, they have not got the time or energy to think about the cause. it is hard enough to get through the day. abc news, manila. >> two police officers have been injured and another night of violence. in response to a decision not fly the union flag. >> there has been trouble in the center of belfast again tonight. tensions have been increasing in northern ireland with more than 12 police officers injured. it was another dangerous situation, but under control. it is not the image belfast
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local politicians wanted on display on the day hillary clinton came to visit, but she has been here seven times before and those that it is not perfect. she has a message for those causing trouble in the streets. >> you must not use violence as a means of expressing those strong feelings. the only path forward is a peaceful, democratic one. >> last night in londonderry, police found a rocket launcher ready for use by dissident republicans. protesters have been protesting about the decision to stop flying the union flag every day. after meeting hillary clinton, she spoke about the fear of being attacked. >> i will not let that threat deter me from serving my constituents.
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>> despite appeals for pcalm, the violence continues. protesterthe trouble is happenin the heart of the city. this area is full of bars and restaurants, and normally on a friday night, it is full of partygoers, but not tonight. the police have called in extra resources. it looks like they are going to need them. mark simpson, bbc news, belfast. >> now toto get to the moon, anu better be willing to forecast $1.5 billion.
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our correspondent has the details. >> in 1972, nasa says astronauts to the noon for the last time. no one has been back since. >> one giant leap for privately- owned commercial enterprises. >> former nasa employees have launched a new company. the privately-owned company said it will soon be offering commercial flights back to the lunar surface. >> our vision is to create a reliable and affordable u.s.- based commercial transportation system for women. >> the company says it will cost $1.4 billion for a two-man mission. it means countries like japan, south korea, and south africa
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will be able to carry out the search and exploration on the lunar surface. 40 years ago, only the vast resources of the u.s. could send astronauts to the moon. now, there is no political will or the money to do it again. according to one of the last man to set foot on the moon, it will be the private sector from now on that will lead the way back. >> it will be an entrepreneurial effort by private investors to -- obviously regulated and stationed by government -- but nevertheless managed by the private sector. i think government is too inefficient to make those costs come down to the point where would be economic. >> some experts think the idea is too ambitious. >> they do not have the money. they have not picked the hardware, developed the hardware. i am skeptical, at least on the times delaware they are talking about, this can go from an idea
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to our reality. >> some believe there will be another era of space exploration, taking a new generation back to the moon and even beyond. >> amazing, if expensive. that brings to day's show to a close. remember, you can find constant updates on our website. thanks for watching. have a great day.
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coming up, in haiti we report on one successful ministry of healing and shelter. despite natural disaster and failed bury rock sees. >> the surprise to everybody including to us is that we could do it all pretty much without batting an eye lash. >> a prominent evangelical leader reflects on 25 years in the cuur