Home The crisis in the eurozone was ‘an opportunity to begin to refashion the EU so it better serves this nation’s interests’, David Cameron, the Prime Minister, said in his Mansion House speech. George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, said in a television interview: ‘There’s got to be more integration — the kind of thing actually that Britain would not tolerate and is one of the reasons we didn’t go in the euro.’ Unemployment among those aged 16-24 rose above a million. Inflation fell by 0.2 percentage points, to 5 per cent (measured by the CPI) and 5.4 (by the RPI). Mr Cameron threw a fork at a mouse during dinner at his Downing Street flat, but missed.
In a wrangle involving Theresa May, the Home Secretary, about the monitoring of immigrants, Brodie Clark, until recently the head of UK Border Agency’s ‘border force’, told the Commons Home Affairs Committee: ‘I introduced no additions to the Home Secretary’s trial, neither did I extend it or alter it in any way whatsoever.’ Fingerprinting, it was explained, was a separate matter. He said that his reputation in a 40-year career had been destroyed in two days ‘largely because of the contribution made by the Home Secretary’. Earlier, Aldershot was reported to be under financial pressure because almost 10 per cent of its population was now Nepalese, through an influx of retired Gurkhas. Westminster Abbey sought £12 million to open to the public the triforium above its north and south aisles.
The British Medical Association called for the criminalisation of smoking in a car, even when the driver is alone. Police held 172 supporters of the English defence League in the Red Lion pub, Whitehall, to prevent them from moving upon the protestors’ encampment outside St Paul’s; the Corporation of London resumed legal action to clear the site. Despite almost 5,000 compensation claims arising from the August riots being lodged under the 1886 Riot Damages Act, the police fund held by the Home Office has only paid out £3,584. Argentina said that the posting of the Duke of Cambridge to the Falklands next February would be a ‘provocative act’.
Abroad Silvio Berlusconi finally resigned as Prime Minister of Italy. He was replaced, before the markets reopened after the weekend, by Mario Monti, a senator only since 11 November, who from 1994 to 2004 had been a European Commissioner. Lucas Papademos was sworn in as the new Prime Minister of Greece; he is not an MP but a banker who served from 2002 to 2010 as deputy of the European Central Bank. The cost of borrowing for Italy rose again above 7 per cent, and Spain and France were squeezed too. The German economy grew by 0.5 per cent in the third quarter and the French by 0.4 per cent, but the European Union cut its growth forecast for the eurozone in 2012, from 1.8 to 0.5 per cent. Japan climbed back out of recession. Jefferson County, Alabama, population 658,000, voted to file for bankruptcy, with debts of $4.1 billion.
the spectator | 19 November 2011 | www.spectator.co.uk
King Abdullah of Jordan urged Bashar al-Assad to resign as President of Syria. The Arab League had earlier suspended Syria’s membership as the killing of protestors continued. Saudi Arabia complained after its embassy in Damascus was overrun by a mob; Turkish diplomatic missions were also attacked after it lent support to the Arab League stance. Turkish forces shot dead a man who had hijacked a ferry for 12 hours, east of Istanbul. Government forces shelled a residential area in Taiz, the second city of Yemen. The head of Iran’s missile-development was killed in an explosion, said by some of the Israeli press to be the work of Mossad. Iran was afflicted by a new computer virus called Duqu, also said to be the work of Israel. Libya expects to return to pre-war levels of crude oil output, about 1.6 million barrels per day, by the end of 2012. The Nyamuragira volcano in the Democratic Republic of Congo sent lava fountains 1,200 feet into the air, attracting sightseers.
NewYork City police cleared an Occupy Wall Street encampment at Zuccotti Park by night. Brazilian military forces seized Rio’s biggest favela in an exercise intended to free it from drugs gangs in time for the World Cup in 2014. Cocaine worth US$80 million was found on a yacht on the coast of Queensland. Francisco Blake Mora, the interior minister of Mexico, who had combated drugs, died in a helicopter crash that officials said was an accident. Emirates Airlines ordered 50 Boeing 777 aircraft costing about $18 billion. A Russian space probe bound for Phobos, a moon of Mars, got stuck in orbit round the Earth. CSH