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BBC TwoNewsnight
Last Updated: Friday, 11 November 2005, 16:21 GMT
Friday, 11 November, 2005

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Gavin Esler's biography


From Gavin Esler

The un-diplomatic row

The Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has lambasted the not-very-diplomatic Sir Christopher Meyer for breaking the trust between civil servants and ministers in his book, DC Confidential.

Sir Christopher says that British ministers, including Jack Straw, were "political pygmies" who failed to win the respect of their US counterparts in the run up to the war against Saddam Hussein.

So, as former diplomats and the government put the squeeze on Sir Christopher, will he have to resign from the PCC? Should he have kept his mouth shut? And, above all, were his observations accurate?

Iraq and Terror

Over the past week US forces have been carrying out full scale military strikes in the west of Iraq.

Our Diplomatic Editor, Mark Urban, examines the strategic significance of these operations and looks at how civilians may have been caught up in the fighting.

We have an interview with the US Colonel in charge of the operation, and as Jordan licks its wounds after a terrible series of bombings we ask what impact the attack will have on levels of support for Al-Qaeda in Jordan.

The Whip hand

With Britain experiencing an unseasonable outbreak of parliamentary democracy - yes, MPs can rebel against the government, yes their views matter, yes they can defeat Tony Blair - Newsnight turns its attention on those unsung masters of the universe with the kinky title of Whips.

What do the Whips, er, um, actually do?

Whatever it is, will they be doing a lot more of it now Tony Blair has received his first parliamentary bloody nose?

Newsnight, Friday night and the Secret World of the Whips - what more could you want?


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Can Labour Whips remember what they're supposed to do?

Meyer broke our trust, says Straw
11 Nov 05 |  UK Politics

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