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Page last updated at 06:19 GMT, Friday, 17 July 2009 07:19 UK
Today: Friday 17 July 2009

PLEASE NOTE: We are unable to offer transcripts for our programme interviews. Today is broadcast live and the running order is subject to change.

The head of the UK Army has said better equipment is needed to protect troops from roadside bombs in Afghanistan. And at least nine people including some foreigners have been killed in two bomb blasts at luxury hotels in the Indonesian capital Jakarta, police say.


The head of the army, General Sir Richard Dannatt, says that if the country cannot afford more money to help soldiers in Afghanistan then the MoD needs to spend what it does get differently. Shadow defence secretary Liam Fox discusses how the defence budget should be spent.


At least nine people including some foreigners have been killed in two bomb blasts at luxury hotels in the Indonesian capital Jakarta, police say. Eyewitness Geoffrey Head, who was asleep on the 23rd floor of the Ritz-Carlton hotel when it happened, and Rohan Gunaratna, a professor of security studies in Singapore, discuss the possible causes of the explosion.

Business news with Nick Cosgrove.


It is 40 years since man first went to the moon. At the time, mobile phones and personal computers were the stuff of science fiction and yet humans managed to send three men more than 250,000 miles across space. In the second of his reports, science correspondent Tom Feilden looks at the remarkable technological achievement of the Apollo programme.

Sports news with Rob Bonnet.


Twenty-nine people have now died in the UK after contracting swine flu, up from 17 on Monday, the government has said. Professor Steve Field, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, discusses how the NHS is coping with a surge in calls and consultations.


Several high-profile authors are to stop visiting schools in protest at new laws requiring them to be vetted to work with youngsters. John O'Brien, programme director of the Vetting and Barring Scheme, explains why he believes these checks need to be made.

Today's papers.


Former South African President Nelson Mandela is about to celebrate his 91st birthday. Southern Africa correspondent Karen Allen reports on a special Nelson Mandela day to be held in South Africa during which ordinary citizens will be asked to give up some time to help others in need.

Thought for the day with Vishvapani, a member of the Western Buddhist Order.


Unannounced checks on children's services introduced after the Baby P case should be halted because they are unfair, senior officials have said. Kim Bromley-Derry, president of the Association of Directors of Children's Services and Roger Shippam, Ofsted's director of children's services, discuss whether inspectors are doing a thorough job.


The head of the UK Army has said better equipment is needed to protect troops from roadside bombs in Afghanistan. General Sir Richard Dannatt explains what would be on his "shopping list" of what is required in Afghanistan.


Full fat milk used to be the cream of the crop with consumers but, as dietary habits change, more and more cream is being exported to the continent. Chef Rowley Leigh, of Le Café Anglais, and Dr Judith Bryans, of the Dairy Council, discuss why the UK produces a surplus of 60,000 tonnes of cream each year.

Sports news with Rob Bonnet.


As the US celebrates the 40th anniversary of the moon landings, space enthusiasts are worried that there is too little else to celebrate in the country's space programme. John Holdren, director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) at the White House, discusses President Obama's plans for the space programme.


The key to reforming the political system is to be found in the social evolution of great apes, the broadcaster Sir Anthony Jay says. He explains why, in his opinion, the history of human evolution should be examined to rediscover personal familiarity in politics.

Business news with Nick Cosgrove.


A computer company in Denmark, which has made huge strides in employing workers with autism as software testers, is expecting to begin work in Glasgow. Health correspondent Jane Dreaper reports from Copenhagen on the difficulties employing people with the disorder.


Do you know your Moon from your Man Of War? Peter Richardson, of the Marine Conservation Society's biodiversity programme, explains why they are asking Today programme listeners to help in a national survey of jellyfish.


Parliamentary sketch writer Quentin Letts "thinks he is the cheeky diminutive jester from the Daily Mail, waving his cap and bells. He is not - his insults are sometimes no better than those of a football yobbo hurling spit from the shelter of the terraces," the newsletter Order Order says. Mr Letts discusses this accusation with Joe Ashton, the editor of Order Order.


The mayor and other representatives of Wootton Bassett, the Wiltshire town near the military base RAF Lyneham, have written to the newspapers asking for no pomp or militarisation of the processions through the town. Nick Hewitt, historian at the Imperial War Museum, discusses the changes in the way those killed in war are commemorated.



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