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The Briefing Room

BBC Radio 4

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David Aaronovitch and a panel of experts and insiders present in-depth explainers on big issues in the news

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Is Your Local Council Going Bust?

28:44 | Feb 8th, 2018

Child services in Northampton are under pressure - and it's partly due to where long-distance lorry drivers choose to take a pee. In fact, Northampton County Council as a whole is under huge financial pressure and earlier this week seven MPs from...Show More

Climate Change: is time running out?

28:36 | Dec 21st, 2018

In October, the IPCC, the UN body that reports on climate change, issued a stark warning. It said that if the world wanted to avoid catastrophic environmental damage, we needed to reduce carbon emissions by almost half in the next 12 years. So what n...Show More

Brexit - where next?

29:01 | Dec 13th, 2018

Theresa May has been back in Brussels to attend a meeting of EU leaders, a day after surviving a leadership challenge at home. Her mission: to try to extract some form of concession from the other 27 EU member states that might persuade MPs in Westmi...Show More

Les Gilets Jaunes

28:28 | Dec 6th, 2018

In France a wave of protests has brought the country to a standstill in recent weeks. The original cause of the anger - the government's plan to raise the rate of tax on diesel - has now disappeared. President Macron responded this week to the mood i...Show More

Deal or no deal?

28:49 | Nov 29th, 2018

Theresa May is urging her MPs to accept the deal she has struck with Brussels on the UK's withdrawal from the EU. The trouble is that few in Westminster believe this is a vote she can win and Brussels has said no further negotiations are possible. ...Show More

A new political direction for Brazil?

28:44 | Oct 11th, 2018

Is Brazil embracing a more conservative political future? In the wake of economic crisis, corruption scandals and rising levels of violent crime, Brazilians are shunning the left wing politicians who have run the country for the last two decades in ...Show More

How bad is the air we breathe – and how can we make it cleaner?

28:29 | Oct 4th, 2018

Air pollution is creating big problems. Scientists say it is a leading cause of climate change, which will be the subject of a major report to be released next week by the IPCC, a UN body that is studying the issue. Another problem is damage to he...Show More

Nationalisation - how would it work?

28:57 | Sep 27th, 2018

At its annual conference in Liverpool this week, the Labour party set out plans to nationalise a large range of industries that previous governments had sold off. The industries it wants to bring back into public ownership include water, rail, energy...Show More

Another Brexit Referendum?

28:36 | Sep 20th, 2018

How could a new referendum on Britain's relationship with Europe work? As pressure mounts on Theresa May to seal an agreement on Brexit, there are growing calls for a further referendum on the issue. From across the political spectrum, MPs, trade uni...Show More

Can a new political party win?

28:49 | Sep 13th, 2018

David Aaronovitch and a panel of experts and insiders explore big news issues.

What's at stake in the US midterm elections?

28:51 | Sep 6th, 2018

November's midterm elections in the US are the first chance for voters across the country to pass judgement on President Trump's administration since the 2016 election. All 435 seats in the House of Representatives are up for grabs and a third of...Show More

Britain's Housing Crisis

28:55 | Aug 31st, 2018

The prime minister, Theresa May bemoaned the state of the housing sector in a speech earlier this year. She said the national housing crisis was one of the biggest barriers to social mobility in Britain today. She acknowledged that property prices ...Show More

Is Greece out of the woods?

28:28 | Aug 23rd, 2018

Greece exited its bailout programme last week. It's the culmination of nine years of reliance on huge loans from international finance bodies and stringent budget cuts. Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras, heralded it as a day of liberation. In the ...Show More

Is Turkey imploding?

28:25 | Aug 16th, 2018

This week Turkey's currency plummeted to its lowest level ever against the US dollar. The lira's steady descent this year was accelerated by the imposition of increased tariffs on steel and aluminium by the United States. President Trump, it seem...Show More

Is the Student Finance System Working?

28:27 | Aug 9th, 2018

This month exam results are published, and millions of young people will be hoping that they will do well enough to get into their chosen university. But students don't only need good grades to succeed - they also need money. Ever since the expansi...Show More

02/08/2018

28:26 | Aug 2nd, 2018

Why has a new timetable caused such rail chaos this summer? In May, what was billed as the biggest ever overhaul of train timetables led to widespread rail disruption. Since then, passengers travelling on the services of two rail franchises - Govia T...Show More

Imran Khan and Pakistan: what's going to change?

28:48 | Jul 26th, 2018

Imran Khan has claimed victory in Pakistan's election. But what will he be able to change? Khan is better known internationally for his exploits on the cricket field than in the political arena. On the surface his ascent to power represents significa...Show More

What does the UK want from the EU?

28:31 | Jul 19th, 2018

Dominic Raab, the recently appointed Brexit Secretary has been in Brussels this week - his first visit since replacing David Davis, who resigned after the cabinet had apparently agreed on a document that represented a UK proposal for its future rela...Show More

Trump vs NATO

28:44 | Jul 12th, 2018

Should NATO plan for a future without the United States? President Trump has long complained that some European members of the organisation have been getting a free ride from the USA after failing to meet their commitment to spend two per cent of...Show More

Brexit decision time

28:27 | Jul 5th, 2018

What will Britain's relationship with the EU look like after Brexit? On Friday the cabinet meets in Chequers and the Prime Minister needs to unite her ministers to coalesce around a single approach to negotiations with the EU. What might that approac...Show More

Why are the British Armed Forces short of personnel?

28:51 | May 31st, 2018

How well equipped is Britain today to defend itself both at home and overseas? Britain's armed forces are struggling to maintain numbers. According to the National Audit Office there is a shortfall of more than 8,000 among military personnel and t...Show More

Could Italy bring down the European Union?

28:51 | May 24th, 2018

Does the new Italian government really pose a danger for the Eurozone and the European Union? There has been much to-ing and fro-ing in Rome this week as the two parties which finished up ahead in Italy's election in March have tried to persuade ...Show More

Macron: One Year On

29:02 | May 17th, 2018

One year into his presidency, can Emmanuel Macron succeed in reforming France where his predecessors have failed? The Briefing Room visits Paris to find out what President Macron stands for and whether his reforms are likely to take root. Does En...Show More

Is the Home Office a problem department?

28:28 | May 3rd, 2018

Why do we get through so many Home Secretaries? It may be one of the great offices of state, but many British politicians regard the job of Home Secretary with dread. As one former holder of the post put it "there grew a view that the Home Off...Show More

What is the problem with plastic?

28:29 | Apr 26th, 2018

Some 8 million tons of plastic end up in the oceans every year, where it can be lethal to marine life. Governments and businesses have vowed to take action to curb it. But Just how serious is the problem of plastic waste, and what can be done to tack...Show More

A new Cold War?

28:41 | Apr 19th, 2018

After the missile strikes by the US, France and Britain on Syria, Russia's president, Vladimir Putin, condemned the attacks and warned that any more would bring chaos to world affairs. With relations between Russia and the West at their lowest eb...Show More

Violent Crime

28:48 | Apr 12th, 2018

London's murder rate overtook that of New York in February and March this year, and the violent crime rate seems to be rising in other parts of the UK too. There's much debate about the causes, with suggestions that austerity, gang culture, socia...Show More

Can you win a trade war?

28:39 | Apr 5th, 2018

According to US President Donald Trump "trade wars aren't so bad". Recently his government surprised the world by announcing unexpected big increases in import taxes - or tariffs - on steel and aluminium. Mr Trump believes that this is one way to...Show More

The EU after Brexit – A special programme together with The Bottom Line

55:16 | Mar 29th, 2018

Radio 4’s Bottom Line and Briefing Room will combine in a special hour-long programme examining the economic and political future of the EU once Britain has left. Evan Davis meets Jean-Claude Trichet – former president of the European Central Bank – ...Show More

The Mueller Indictment

28:30 | Feb 22nd, 2018

Robert Mueller, the Special Counsel appointed to investigate possible Russian links to the Trump campaign in 2016, last week issued formal charges against three companies and thirteen named individuals. They are all Russian. The 37-page indictmen...Show More

Is ISIS still a threat?

28:40 | Feb 15th, 2018

The capture of two Londoners accused of brutal crimes in Syria has again raised questions about the viability of so-called Islamic State. The two men - El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - face an uncertain future. Britain has stripped them of the...Show More

Britain, China and the new Silk Road

28:29 | Feb 1st, 2018

Theresa May has been in Beijing this week at the head of a large British trade delegation. China is an important partner for Britain, especially given the UK's imminent departure from the EU. In particular, Beijing is keen for Britain to support its ...Show More

Syria: who wants what from the conflict?

28:43 | Jan 25th, 2018

As Turkey launches a new offensive over the border into north-east Syria, David Aaronovitch and guests examine what Turkey, Russia, Iran and the US want from the war in Syria. Which country stands to gain the most? And what is President Bashar al-Ass...Show More

John Worboys: Understanding the Parole Board

28:42 | Jan 18th, 2018

How does the Parole Board decide whether to release offenders on licence? Should it be more open, especially since the decision to release serial sex offender John Worboys? Nick Hardwick, the Chair of the Parole Board for England and Wales wants i...Show More

Would you pay more for the NHS?

28:29 | Jan 11th, 2018

In its 70th year the NHS is in a winter crisis again. Many people working in the NHS argue successive governments have failed to address what is arguably the biggest problem: funding. David Aaronovitch asks if the public would pay more for the NHS....Show More

Who are the protesters in Iran and what do they want?

28:45 | Jan 4th, 2018

Twenty people have been killed and hundreds arrested after a series of protests in Iran this week - but what's behind these demonstrations? Iran is a strategically important country and so when protests happen, the world takes notice - but who ar...Show More

What Next for the Democrats?

28:28 | Dec 28th, 2017

A year on from their shock defeat in the US presidential elections, David Aaronovitch asks how the US Democratic party is responding to Donald Trump's Presidency and assesses some of the challenges which lie ahead. What new policies is the party ...Show More

President Trump's End of Year Report

29:15 | Dec 21st, 2017

Has President Trump delivered on the promises he made on the campaign trail? This programme cuts through the White House soap opera which has dominated headlines and asks what has the President actually achieved? David Aaronovitch and a panel of e...Show More

What's Russia up to?

28:22 | Dec 14th, 2017

What do we really know about Russian 'meddling' in Western democracy? David Aaronovitch asks experts on Russia what the Kremlin is trying to achieve by hacking emails and spreading fake news. Guests include the Gordon Corera, the BBC's Security Co...Show More

May's Brexit Dilemma

28:33 | Dec 7th, 2017

The different factions piling Brexit pressure on Theresa May. Following the failure to reach a deal on the first stage of Brexit earlier this week, David Aaronovitch asks experts why Theresa May seems to have fallen foul of her own side. He'l...Show More

Saudi Arabia's Radical Crown Prince

28:17 | Nov 30th, 2017

Can Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince radically change the kingdom? Mohammed bin Salman is an ambitious new leader who wants to reshape his country's politics, economy and society. But he faces strong opposition both at home and abroad. David Aaron...Show More

A world without antibiotics?

28:32 | Oct 26th, 2017

Drug resistant infections cause 700,000 deaths a year and it's estimated that could rise to 10 million by 2050 unless major action is taken. David Aaronovitch asks how can an antibiotic crisis can be averted? Joining him in The Briefing Room ar...Show More

President Xi and the Chinese Dream

28:15 | Oct 19th, 2017

President Xi Jinping is said to be China's most powerful leader since Chairman Mao Zedong - so what does he want to do with this power? The Chinese Communist Party started its congress this week, held every five years, unveiling a new generation o...Show More

Capitalism in Crisis

28:32 | Oct 12th, 2017

Is capitalism broken, and if so, what should replace it? David Aaronovitch examines whether the free market is failing, and asks how it could be reformed. He speaks to a range of experts and leading economists including: Paul Johnson, Director...Show More

Could Spain split?

28:16 | Oct 6th, 2017

Could the crisis over Catalonia lead to the break up of Spain? With political rhetoric from both Barcelona and Madrid intensifying, David Aaronovitch asks a range of experts whether an independent Catalan state is now a possibility. He examines wha...Show More

Is Big Tech Out of Control?

28:26 | Sep 28th, 2017

Are big technology companies out of control, as their rapid growth and influence has made them too big to fail? David Aaronovitch asks if companies such as Facebook, Google and Amazon can be reined in and explores a range of issues including inno...Show More

Why are Myanmar's Rohingya persecuted?

28:21 | Sep 21st, 2017

Myanmar's de facto leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, says she wants to know why 400,000 Muslim Rohingyas have fled into Bangladesh. The UN says what's going on seems "a textbook case of ethnic cleansing". But why are the Rohingyas facing persecution in t...Show More

What are the consequences of lifting the public sector pay cap?

28:21 | Sep 14th, 2017

The public sector pay cap is being scrapped after five years - what will it mean for public finances? Prison and police officers will be the first to benefit, but unions have condemned the pay rises - which are less than inflation - as "pathetic"....Show More

What does the EU want from Brexit?

28:13 | Sep 7th, 2017

As negotiations between the UK and the EU hit choppy waters, the Briefing Room asks what does the EU want from Brexit and what would be its bottom line? David Aaronovitch is joined by expert guests including: Pascal Lamy, former EU Trade Commi...Show More

The North Korean Missile Threat

28:15 | Aug 31st, 2017

Do the United States and its allies really have the technology to stop incoming missiles from North Korea? In the week North Korea tested another ballistic missile - this time it flew over northern Japan - David Aaronovich asks what threat does No...Show More

The AI Revolution

28:11 | Aug 24th, 2017

How will Artificial Intelligence shape our lives, and what should we do now to prepare for it? AI is all around us in our everyday lives. It's used to make decisions about employment, loans, credit cards and even what we read and listen to. So wha...Show More

The Far Right in America

27:51 | Aug 17th, 2017

What do the events in Charlottesville, Virginia, tell us about the strength of the far-right in America? What should the government do to combat domestic extremism? In this week's programme David Aaronovitch asks if there is a white nationalist rev...Show More

Is Venezuela on the brink of collapse?

28:07 | Aug 10th, 2017

How did the oil rich state of Venezuela see such a rapid economic decline? Poverty is rife, inflation is running at more than 700 per cent and protests are widespread. President Nicolás Maduro is tightening his hold on power following the appointment...Show More

A Great Day at the White House?

28:36 | Aug 4th, 2017

It's been a tumultuous week in Washington - but to what extent does the chaos in Trump's West Wing matter? Anthony 'The Mooch' Scaramucci was gone in 900,000 seconds - but whoever replaces him will be President Trump's third communications directo...Show More

Why is there still a migrant crisis in Europe?

28:02 | Jul 28th, 2017

This year almost 100,000 people have arrived in Italy by boat - and more than 2,000 have died trying. The Italians say they can’t cope, but it's a problem which has now been going on for years - so why has nobody solved it? In this week's prog...Show More

The Crisis in Conservatism

28:13 | Jul 20th, 2017

Are Tory divisions temporary or symptomatic of deeper problems? Parliament has broken up for the summer, and the last week has seen Conservative cabinet ministers engaging in open warfare. But are the divisions a temporary crisis, or are they sym...Show More

Where does Labour stand on Brexit?

27:51 | Jul 13th, 2017

Labour will play a crucial role in shaping Britain's exit from the EU now the Conservative government has lost its overall majority. The vast majority of Labour MPs backed Remain ahead of the referendum - but most followed party orders to allow A...Show More

The Cost of Abandoning Austerity

28:11 | Jul 6th, 2017

The chancellor is facing widespread calls for more spending. Should he listen, or stick to his deficit reduction plan? Senior Conservatives are calling for more public spending on things like public sector pay - but Philip Hammond is committed to ...Show More

Labour's Election Result: A Successful Failure?

28:09 | Jun 15th, 2017

The election was supposed to be a disaster for Jeremy Corbyn - but wasn't. How did Labour turn around its fortunes? Despite coming second and falling 64 seats short of an overall majority, the Labour party increased its share of the vote by nearly...Show More

Trump, Russia and the FBI

28:26 | May 18th, 2017

There's a compelling story unfolding in Washington. Last week, President Trump fired the director of the FBI, James Comey. It was a contentious move: Comey was investigating ties between Donald Trump's election campaign and Russia. Some are now askin...Show More

How Do We Pay for the UK?

28:34 | May 11th, 2017

David Aaronovitch presents the need-to-know facts on where taxes come from and how they're spent. This edition is a politician-free zone, with non-partisan analysis on how we pay for the UK and the prospects for public services in the future. C...Show More

How Does France Work?

28:26 | May 4th, 2017

For the first time in over half a century, two insurgents, Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron, have broken through France's traditional two party system. This week, voters will decide between two utterly different visions of France, Europe and the wor...Show More

The Problem of North Korea

28:09 | Apr 27th, 2017

The US and North Korea have been flexing their military muscles in recent weeks, testing and deploying new missiles. President Trump has said North Korea is "a big big problem" that he will deal with "strongly". This week he took the extraordinar...Show More

Snap General Election

28:32 | Apr 20th, 2017

What are the political tribes which divide British voters today and how will June's general election shape Britain? Britain voted last year on the question of the EU - and following Theresa May's surprise announcement, we vote again on who should ta...Show More

Should we worry about Turkey?

27:59 | Apr 13th, 2017

What does Turkey's referendum mean for the UK's foreign policy? The UK has long seen Turkey as a bastion of stability in the Middle East: a Muslim-majority democracy, a NATO member and ally against so-called Islamic State; a physical and ideological...Show More

Can the NHS Survive?

28:20 | Apr 6th, 2017

What are the changes needed now to ensure the NHS is sustainable in the future? The NHS is facing one of the biggest crises in its history. With an ageing population, the increasing cost of drugs and treatments, and lack of funding for social care, ...Show More

Britain's Broken Housing Market

28:35 | Mar 2nd, 2017

The government says the housing market is broken and that it's holding the country back. As prices have risen, fewer people are able to get on the housing ladder, and more are now renting privately later into their lives. Many argue we're not bui...Show More

Does IS Need a State?

28:23 | Feb 23rd, 2017

What will happen if the Islamic State loses its state? The so-called Islamic State is rapidly losing territory, money and fighters in both Iraq and Syria. Iraqi government troops, supported by US and British special forces, have launched an offens...Show More

Is It Time to Renationalise the Railways?

28:23 | Feb 16th, 2017

Bringing Britain's railways back into public ownership is a popular idea with passengers - but would it really make any improvements to service? Renationalisation of the railways is official Labour party policy. Polls suggest a majority of voters fa...Show More

Trump and Trade

36:18 | Feb 9th, 2017

Can President Trump deliver on his pre-election promise to bring back outsourced manufacturing jobs, and end the 'bad deals' that have outsourced labour to countries like Mexico? This message was particularly powerful in America's Midwest - often ...Show More

Trump and the Economy

27:58 | Feb 2nd, 2017

Will President Trump's plan to put 'America first' make the USA richer? He's promised a raft of radical economic reforms including a huge cut in tax on businesses, an income tax cut, a massive reduction in regulation, and investment in America's i...Show More

India's Bonfire of the Bank Notes

28:14 | Jan 26th, 2017

Why did India's prime minister ban the use of the country's most widely used bank notes? On 8 November, the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a stunning announcement. As of midnight that day, all 500 and 1000 rupee notes would no longer be l...Show More

Drugs in West Yorkshire

28:07 | Jan 19th, 2017

How did British-Pakistani gangs come to dominate the drugs trade in Yorkshire? Earlier this month, police shot dead 28-year-old Mohammed Yasser Yaqub on a motorway slip road near Huddersfield. Their target was apparently armed and dangerous – a bi...Show More

Aleppo: After the Evacuation

28:02 | Jan 12th, 2017

What happened after the buses left eastern Aleppo in December? After four and a half years of siege, the residents of eastern Aleppo were evacuated before Christmas. But the evacuees didn't disappear when they left the city and the Syrian Civil war ...Show More

Correspondents Look Ahead

47:08 | Dec 30th, 2016

A group of senior BBC journalists forecast what is likely to happen over the coming year in a discussion chaired by Owen Bennett Jones. Last time they got together they were firmly predicting that Marco Rubio would become the Republican presidenti...Show More

Liberalism's Horrible Year

28:02 | Dec 22nd, 2016

Liberalism died in 2016. This bold statement has been made by both right and left wing media in recent months. But what is liberalism - and can such a broad idea really be that vulnerable? Edmund Fawcett, author of Liberalism: The Life of an Idea,...Show More

Yemen: A Global Conflict

27:43 | Dec 15th, 2016

Civil war in Yemen has become a full regional conflict, with global implications - but how did it start in the first place? This week the Disasters Emergency Committee launched a major appeal for aid, with Yemeni children dying of malnutrition fol...Show More

The Prison Problem

27:50 | Dec 8th, 2016

What are the policies and political decisions which led to the current crisis in prisons? Prison life isn't meant to be easy but it is supposed to be safe and secure. Drugs, violence, self-harm and suicide are all increasing problems. David Aar...Show More

The Investigatory Powers Act a.k.a The Snoopers' Charter

28:01 | Dec 1st, 2016

The Investigatory Powers Act - or Snoopers' Charter to its critics - is a highly controversial new law. On one hand, it clarifies a host of vague laws which were out of date with modern technology - but it also enshrines new powers of digital observa...Show More

VIP Sex Abuse Allegations

28:01 | Nov 24th, 2016

An independent review of police investigations into VIP sex abuse has found 43 police failings - but why did the police drop the ball with so many high-profile cases? The Henriques Review looked into the police investigations of public figures, in...Show More

Infrastructure: The Roads to Recovery?

27:37 | Oct 20th, 2016

Theresa May has promised new trains, faster broadband and improved infrastructure. Critics accused her of adopting Labour Party politics. But is it left-wing to invest in infrastructure? During the Great Depression, John Maynard Keynes encouraged ...Show More

Black Lives Matter UK

28:10 | Oct 13th, 2016

What does Black Lives Matter stand for in the UK? In the United States it is a protest movement formed in reaction to the killing of black people by police, and now there are BLM chapters in Birmingham, Nottingham, Manchester and London. The B...Show More

Europe's Illiberal Democracies

28:11 | Oct 6th, 2016

Illiberal democracy is gaining traction across Europe - a political philosophy which in part draws support from the far right, championing anti-migrant and anti-EU sentiment. Among the most visible illiberal democrats' is Hungary's Prime Minister...Show More

Quantitative Easing

27:17 | Sep 29th, 2016

As part of its response to the Brexit vote, the Bank of England will buy an extra £70 billion of bonds and will create new money to do so. The aim is to stimulate the economy and try to meet the government's 2% inflation target. But will it work? T...Show More

A Ceasefire in Syria?

27:44 | Sep 22nd, 2016

Why has it been so difficult to find peace in Syria, and what are the complicating factors which are getting in the way of a deal? In early September the US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced a new ...Show More

Trump and Putin

29:04 | Sep 15th, 2016

It's one of the strangest developments in a very strange election campaign. The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, says Donald Trump is "colourful and talented". For his part, the Republican nominee says Putin "is very much a leader ... far more th...Show More

Trotsky, Trotskyism and Trotskyites

27:47 | Sep 8th, 2016

The Labour deputy leader Tom Watson has warned that his party could be taken over by old Trots - Trotskyist entryists, who have no interest in winning elections but instead see Labour as a vehicle for revolutionary socialism. But what is a Trot, w...Show More

Jesse Morton: The Jihadi Who Changed His Mind

28:11 | Sep 1st, 2016

Jesse Morton was once a radical jihadi involved in the American offshoot of the banned British extremist group Al-Muhajiroun. Al-Muhajiroun's leader, Anjem Choudary, was convicted of inviting others to support the so-called Islamic State, and is ...Show More

Milo Yiannopoulos and the Alt-Right

28:44 | Aug 25th, 2016

David Aaronovitch speaks to Milo Yiannopoulos about Donald Trump's new political base - the 'alt-right'. It's a mostly young, disparate movement which organises and congregates online, which has little in common with traditional Republicans. H...Show More

Grammar Schools

27:45 | Aug 18th, 2016

Grammar schools are back on the agenda courtesy of Theresa May. Why has the Conservative party's love affair with an almost extinct system of educational selection endured? Step into The Briefing Room with David Aaronovitch to discover the history of...Show More

Who are the Special Forces?

28:33 | Aug 11th, 2016

When the BBC obtained exclusive pictures of Special Air Service soldiers fighting Islamic State militants in Syria, the Ministry of Defence refused to comment. British Special Forces are now on the ground in Libya as well - although nobody ever v...Show More

Britain's Nuclear Dream

28:29 | Aug 4th, 2016

Britain faces big decisions when it comes to generating electricity - and ones we will all end up paying for. So what's the right choice? Theresa May surprised many by one of her first acts as prime minister: delaying a new nuclear power station at...Show More

What Do Remainers Feel Now?

28:31 | Jul 28th, 2016

There was jubilation among many who were on the winning side of last month's EU referendum. But the vote, more than any in recent memory, laid bare the UK's divisions - not only in demographics but also social attitudes. Many of the 16m people who vo...Show More

Fethullah Gulen and Turkey's Failed Coup

28:11 | Jul 21st, 2016

Turkey's president put the blame on the Gulen movement for an attempted coup - but what is it? The Briefing Room explores the roots and influence of this transnational Islamic religious and social movement. More than 50,000 people in the military,...Show More

The Truth About BHS

28:15 | Jul 15th, 2016

BHS was one of the biggest names on the high street, but it is now in administration and faces an uncertain future. What exactly happened, and who is responsible for its decline? Much of the focus has been on Sir Philip Green who sold the firm a l...Show More

Why Did People Vote Leave?

28:24 | Jul 14th, 2016

Why did so many people in the UK vote to Leave the EU? David Aaronovitch talks to residents in the pro-Leave city of Wakefield and finds out from experts why personal prosperity was a poor indicator of referendum voting intention. Guests include: ...Show More

The Chilcot Report: The Source Who Lied

28:14 | Jul 7th, 2016

The Chilcot Report revealed that a key source of flawed intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq war was a man known as Curveball. How did this obscure figure come to influence Britain's decision to go to war? David Aaronovitch and guests discuss the s...Show More

Immigration: Why Did it Rise?

27:41 | Jun 30th, 2016

Immigration to the United Kingdom remains at a near-record high - but what are the political decisions and global trends which led to its rise in the first place? Unprecedented levels of immigration motivated many Leave voters in the EU referendum...Show More

The New IRA

28:17 | May 26th, 2016

Northern Ireland-related terrorism now represents a “substantial” threat to Great Britain, according to MI5 - the security service. It believes that a terrorist attack is a "strong possibility" in Britain and "highly likely" in Northern Ireland itse...Show More

Anti-Semitism on the Left

28:21 | May 19th, 2016

Labour activists, councillors, an MP and a former Mayor of London have all been suspended for comments which many regard as anti-Jewish. But why might a left of centre, progressive, pro-minority party have a problem with Anti-Semitism? Joining Dav...Show More