Video: the state
this page last updated: Wednesday 26 September 2018
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Massacre at Ballymurphy — Callum Macrae
9 September 2018
Award-winning director Callum Macrae's new feature documentary tells the story of the death of eleven innocent people killed by the British Army on a Catholic estate in Belfast in 1971, and the fight by their relatives and survivors to discover the truth. This is a massacre that few have heard of, yet it was one of the most significant events of the Troubles, coming as it did in the first days of internment and six months before Bloody Sunday. Macrae's film is a skilful mixture of investigative journalism, documentary storytelling and a reflection on contemporary history.
stream Channel 4
Putin, Russia and the West (2011) — Brook Lapping, BBC
5 April 2018
How the great Soviet superpower, crushed and humiliated, has been resurrected in the form of Vladimir Putin's new Russia. Vladimir Putin began his career as a KGB spy, but when he became president he made himself a valued ally of the west. How did he do it? And what made Washington and London turn against him? In this four-part series Putin's top colleagues — and the western statesmen who eventually clashed with him — tell the inside story of one of the world's most powerful men.
Part 1: Taking Control
Part 2: Democracy Threatens
Part 3: War
Part 4: New Start
France's Stolen Children — Our World, BBC
3 February 2018
More than 2,000 children were taken to France from the Indian Ocean island of Reunion between the 1960s and early 1980s, as part of a French government plan to repopulate rural areas. Promised a better life and an education, many suffered sexual and physical abuse. Some, now middle-aged, are seeking an apology and compensation from the French state. For Our World, Katie Razzall travels from France to Reunion with two women searching for the families they lost more than 50 years ago.
stream BBC iPlayer
Russia: The Orthodox connection — People and Power, Aljazeera
19 October 2017
What lies behind the close relationship between the Russian Orthodox Church and President Vladimir Putin? Under communism the Church was suppressed — its property confiscated, its followers ridiculed, harassed and imprisoned. But these days, a resurgent and muscular church is central to Putin's ideas of Russian identity — an echo chamber, say critics — to Kremlin policies at home and abroad. “Many of Putin's opponents believe the glowing endorsements and mutual back-slaps the Kremlin and the Orthodox Church give each other these days are contributing to ever more tightly defined social and religious conservatism, intolerant nationalism and a growing personality cult around the president,” write filmmakers Glenn Ellis and Viktoryia Kolchyna who went to Russia to investigate the relationship between Putin and the Church. “... it seemed to us that the rise of the Russian Orthodox Church was unstoppable.” So what lies behind these ever closer ties? What are the implications? And after decades of suppression, how did this renaissance come about?
Putin's Family Values — Unreported World, Channel 4
24 March 2017
Marcel Theroux investigates the resurgence of the Russian Orthodox Church, accompanied by a movement that promotes family, God and country, but which has a darker, intolerant side.
Failed By The State: The Struggle in the Shadow of Grenfell — Redfish
16 November 2016
Redfish presents its debut: An exclusive grassroots report into how austerity and gentrification caused the Grenfell tragedy, one of the deadliest fires in recent UK history.
The Scots who fought Franco — STV Productions
18 September 2017
Over 500 Scots fought in the Spanish Civil War which devastated Spain 70 years ago. Emotions and memories of this extraordinary conflict are still alive and poignant. This documentary, narrated by actor David Hayman, remembers the major conflict through unseen, unique archive interviews with Scots who joined the International Brigade, or Brigaders as they are known.
Chasing Asylum (2016) — Eva Orner
17 August 2017
Exposes the impact of Australia's offshore detention policies through the personal accounts of people seeking asylum and whistleblowers. Anyone picked up making the treacherous journey across the Indian Ocean is sent to Australian off-shore detention camps on the remote tropical islands of Manus and Nauru. Once there, men, women and children are held in indefinite detention, away from media scrutiny. Featuring never-before-seen footage of the appalling living conditions and shocking testimonies from both detainees and camp workers, Chasing Asylum exposes the impact of this policy on those seeking a safer home.
Propaganda — Mancha Productions
30 May 2017
Brief history of propaganda (public relations) and how it's used to manipulate people and society during wartime, using Iraq as an example. Features Professor David Miller and Dr Piers Robinson.
Lawful Killing: Mark Duggan — Acme Films, BBC
5 December 2016
Drama documentary about the police shooting of Mark Duggan in Tottenham in August 2011. The incident triggered the worst riots in modern British history. But while the impact of the event extends far beyond the Duggan family and the community of Tottenham, key details about what actually happened that day remain unclear — shrouded in secret intelligence and obscured by misreporting which remained uncorrected for days, leaving the public with only a partial understanding of the event. To try to understand what happened, this film hears from those close to the story, combining documentary interviews with dramatised reconstruction of the 24 hours leading up to the shooting. Interviews with Mark Duggan's family and friends, journalists and experts are combined with verbatim testimony re-enacted from the transcripts of evidence given at the coroner's inquest by witnesses and police officers.
I, Daniel Blake, Red Tory Treachery and Orgreave with Ken Loach — Going Underground, RT
5 November 2016
Afshin Rattansi speaks to award-winning director, Ken Loach about his latest film I, Daniel Blake, food banks, benefit sanctions, Orgreave and using poverty as a political weapon.
Orgreave Justice — One to One Development Trust
18 October 2016
A short film made for the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign released in December 2015 in conjunction with papers being submitted to the then Home Secretary Theresa May asking for an Inquiry into the police handling of what became known as the Battle of Orgreave.
True Spies (leftwing edit) — BBC
30 August 2016
This three-part BBC documentary series was broadcast in 2002. It reveals how the British Secret State spied on so-called “subversives” in the media, trade unions and political organisations. Through the use of surveillance, infiltration and informants, MI5 and Special Branch worked together to disrupt legitimate political action. The versions featured here have been re-edited to remove most of the rightwing bias found in the original broadcast versions, and therefore have shorter running times.
Dirty Tricks, Spying and Corruption: Ricky Tomlinson on the Shrewsbury 24 Papers — Going Underground, RT
20 August 2016
Afshin Rattansi goes underground on the Shrewsbury 24. Star of the Royle Family and member of the Shrewsbury 24, Ricky Tomlinson tells Going Underground why, 44 years on the government refuses to release the secret documents they have on him. Plus why he is not being allowed to participate in Lord Pitchford’s inquiry into undercover policing.
The Loughinisland Report — Spotlight, BBC
14 June 2016
Mandy McAuley reports on a new Loughinisland finding of police and loyalist collusion and investigates state links to a South African arms shipment.
stream BBC iPlayer
Who Bombed Birmingham? (1990) — Rob Ritchie and Mike Beckham, Granada Television
10 June 2016
The made-for-TV film Who Bombed Birmingham? was first broadcast in 1990. Directed by Mike Beckham, the film is directly inspired by the painstaking efforts of then-journalist Chris Mullin to prove the six men convicted of the 1974 Birmingham pub bombings had been the victims of a miscarriage of justice, as detailed in his 1986 book Error of Judgement: The Truth about the Birmingham Bombings.
Britain's Secret Terror Deals — Panorama, BBC
28 May 2015
British security forces have been accused of involvement in dozens of murders during the Troubles in Northern Ireland. Reporter Darragh MacIntyre investigates allegations that the state colluded with paramilitary killers and covered up their crimes. He meets the families who have been fighting for decades to uncover the government's darkest secrets and he confronts some of those believed to be complicit.
stream BBC iPlayer
Secret Society (1987) — Duncan Campbell, BBC
26 August 2014
Six-part series that disclosed the culture of secrecy in government and lack of public accountability for its actions. The Thatcher administration had different ideas. Before the show was broadcast Strathclyde police raided the BBC's Scottish headquarters and Duncan Campbell's home, seizing the tapes. Although these were later returned, two episodes, Secret Cabinet Committees and Zircon were banned from broadcast in an act of good, old fashioned red-pen censorship. Watch all of them here, including the two banned episodes.
stream Duncan Campbell
Westminster behind Closed Doors: with Tony Benn (1995) — Parliamentary Films, BBC
6 April 2014
Westminster, the seat of successive Parliaments for 700 years, is portrayed in this video like never before. For twelve months Tony Benn walked around with a camera meeting the people and finding the places that visitors, and even MPs, never see. There are fire-fighters, canteen staff and engineers who occupy tiny ante-chambers and lost corridors.
The Police's Dirty Secret — Dispatches, Guardian
27 June 2013
Through the personal testimony of a former Special Demonstration Squad (SDS) officer, a joint investigation examines the ethically dubious tactics of a clandestine unit within the Metropolitan police and reveals the names of high-profile targets. Peter Francis, who spent four years living undercover, is the first officer from the SDS to publicly speak out. His testimony includes allegations that SDS undercover police officers were asked to look for intelligence that could be used to discredit the family of murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence and their campaign.
Hillsborough: How They Buried the Truth — Panorama, BBC
21 May 2013
Investigation that reveals how police, politicians, lawyers and judges all played a part in burying the truth about Britain's worst football disaster. Never-before-broadcast footage of the FA Cup semi-final in which 96 Liverpool fans died reveals a catastrophic failure by the emergency services, how lives might have been saved and how subsequent inquiries were misled. And a former home secretary and former police chiefs are put on the spot about why a succession of official investigations left the truth hidden for a generation.
Finucane Report Reveals Shocking Levels of Collusion — Channel 4 News, BBC
12 December 2012
A 500-page report has confirmed that agents of the British state were involved in the 1989 murder of Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane. The review found RUC officers proposed the killing, said they passed information to his killers and failed to stop the attack and then obstructed the murder investigation. It also found that an Army intelligence unit, the FRU, “bears a degree” of responsibility because one of their agents, Brian Nelson, was involved in selecting targets.
stream Channel 4
stream BBC iPlayer
Who's Watching the Detectives? — Panorama, BBC
20 November 2012
As the Independent Police Complaints Commission is handed the investigation into Hillsborough, the biggest policing scandal in UK history, reporter Mark Daly investigates whether the body that polices the police is fit for purpose. Panorama hears from families who say they have been failed by the police watchdog and examines growing concerns that it does not have sufficient power or the independence to hold the police to account.
The Power Principle: Corporate Empire and the Rise of the National Security State — Metanoia Films
1 June 2012
“A gripping, deeply informative account of the plunder, hypocrisy, and mass violence of plutocracy and empire; insightful, historically grounded and highly relevant to the events of today.” — Michael Parenti.
stream Metanoia Films
The Spy Factory — James Bamford
1 December 2011
In this program, an eye-opening documentary on the National Security Agency by best-selling author James Bamford, Nova exposes the ultra-secret intelligence agency's role in the failure to stop the 9/11 attacks and the subsequent eavesdropping program that listens in without warrant on millions of American citizens.
stream (four parts) YouTube
After Dark: Secrets (1987) — Open Media
13 September 2011
Late-night discussion programme that explores government secrecy. Features psychological warfare operative Colin Wallace, who was wrongly convicted of manslaughter in 1980. Journalist Paul Foot suggested that Wallace may have been framed by British security services in a bid to discredit his allegations that members of the intelligence community had attempted to rig the 1974 General Election. Wallace was involved with the ‘Clockwork Orange’ project.
Cashing In On Degrees — Dispatches, Channel 4
4 August 2011
With students facing massive increases in their fees, Dispatches investigates the pay, perks and privileges enjoyed by universities' top earners. Journalist Laurie Penny reveals the increasing commercialisation of higher education and the subsequent lowering of standards, and asks what happens when universities scour the globe for students and funds.
You can run... but can you hide? — Panorama, BBC
5 November 2008
Is Britain on its way to becoming a surveillance society, or has it already arrived?
stream BBC RealMedia
Tony Benn — HARDtalk, BBC
2 July 2008
Stephen Sackur talks to the former Labour cabinet minister and asks him whether the British government really is endangering fundamental freedoms.
stream BBC RealMedia
The Age of Terror: In the Name of the State — Jon Blair
22 August 2005
Documentary that looks at the US-backed Contras in Nicaragua, the notorious School of the Americas and Argentina's Dirty War of the late 1970s and 80s.
Rong Radio — Kary Stewart, GNN
26 February 2005
British poet and activist Benjamin Zephaniah on the hypocrisy of the Queen and the British establishment, who tried to bring him into the fold and failed. His article on why he refused the Queen's honour can be read here: ‘Me? I thought, OBE me? Up yours, I thought’