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Page last updated at 19:02 GMT, Friday, 14 March 2008

10 Days: Newsnight discusses

Following each 10 Days to War drama Newsnight interviews key figures from the build up to the Iraq war, including many of those featured in the drama series.

Each of the tightly focused dramas touch on a key issue during the 10 days to war. From the legality to the United Nations to the military build up - similarly, Newsnight's interviews and debates reflect the issues raised.


Jonathan Powell

In the final episode Kenneth Branagh is Colonel Tim Collins, the charismatic commander of the Royal Irish Regiment stationed on the Kuwait/Iraq border.

The politicians and diplomats have failed, now it's down to the soldiers. Collins rallies his troops with a speech that comes to be celebrated round the world for its ferocity and humanity.

Blair's former Chief of Staff Jonathan Powell spoke to Newsnight about what it was like in 10 Downing Street in the run up to war.


Paul Stinchcombe and Anne Campbell

In episode seven of 10 Days to War Harriet Walter and Adrian Rawlins play MPs facing mutual crises of conscience in the face of intense lobbying and pressure from a Whip in the shape of Alex Jennings.

The two MPs portrayed in the drama - Anne Campbell and Paul Stinchcombe - talk about that difficult day and how they feel about their decisions now.


Lord Butler

Episode six follows the attempts by the weapons experts to find WMDs in Iraq. A day of chaos and fear ends with a shocking bit of news which brings home the reality of war for everyone.

Former Cabinet Secretary Lord Butler spoke to Newsnight about the use of intelligence on Iraq's supposed weapons of mass destruction.


Sir Jeremy Greenstock

Episode four of 10 Days to War dealt with efforts to get the UN Security Council to agree a second resolution authorising the use of force to which London and Washington were committed. They gave up in the end. Jeremy Paxman was joined by two ambassadors to the UN at the time - Britain's Sir Jeremy Greenstock and Chile's Juan Gabriel Valdes.


Clare Short and Major General Tim Cross

The third episode of 10 Days to War looked at the extent to which there was enough post-war planning ahead of the invasion of Iraq. Clare Short was International Development Secretary at the time. Major General Tim Cross was the UK's chief representative at the Pentagon body responsible for planning to rebuild Iraq. They joined Emily.


Francis Brooke

In the second drama, Francis Brooke, an American who advises Ahmed Chalabi - former head of the Iraqi National Congress, is seen encouraging a diverse group of Iraqis to form an interim government to take over once Saddam had been overthrown. Then the White House changed it's mind. He spoke to Jeremy about the US decision to announce a formal occupation.


General Sir Mike Jackson, Professor Philippe Sands QC, and Professor William Taft

In the first 10 Days to War drama, Juliet Stevenson plays Elizabeth Wilmshurst, a senior British government legal advisor, who felt compelled to resign over the legality of the war. To debate the issue, Jeremy was joined by General Sir Mike Jackson, Chief of the General Staff of the British Army 2003-06, Professor Philippe Sands QC, and Professor William Taft, legal advisor to US State Dept 2000-04.

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