The week ahead: UFOs, Dewani, News Corp Q4 results, hacking, Greece, football

Here is a journalists’ guide to the week ahead provided by forward-planning service: Foresight News.

Today sees the former Israeli President, Moshe Katsav, appear in court for his long-awaited appeal following the 65-year-old’s conviction last year on two counts of rape with an employee while he was President (2000-2007). In documents already released it’s understood the central plank of the lascivious elder statesman’s redress centres on the premise it was a wholly consensual boss/employee sexual relationship. Courtesy of a Supreme Court ruling, the appeal is set to be heard in open court, despite the Israeli state’s attempt to keep the public (read media) out, and the original trial taking place behind closed doors. If unsuccessful, Katsav faces the daunting prospect of seven years behind bars.

For those left scrabbling through copies of Aliens Monthly, surfing the world wide web and optimistically gazing at the night sky after the Ministry of Defence’s (yet again) anticlimactic release of its latest set of UFO files – hope may be around the corner on Tuesday. For the Nationan Archives is hosting an online press event to highlight the previously unreleased tranche of dust-gathering UFO documents. Cue the tales of awe-inspiring UFO sightings across the British Isles; always by Americans, always when they are holed up in military bases.

Wednesday sees Shrien Dewani back into the public eye for a final decision in his enduring battle against extradition to South Africa. The Bristol businessman faces charges of paying to have his newly-wed wife, Anni Dewani, murdered by two South African men while they took a taxi ride through Cape Town’s suburbs in November of last year.

On both Wednesday and Thursday, Rupert Murdoch and scions will be dragged firmly back into the media glare – depending on how you interpret ‘back’. Wednesday’s News Corp announcement on its Q4 results is anticipated to reveal an eye-watering profit – following subsidiary BSkyB’s £1.1bn annual profit announcement last week – much to the chagrin of Guardian readers.

But Thursday is billing itself as the bane to Wednesday’s antidote, when the deadline for written evidence from News International witnesses to the Culture, Media and Sport Committee closes. Tom Watson MP will be waiting with bated breath for Murdoch Jr’s attempt at lawyer-speaking his way out of a complete contradiction during his recollection of events in front of the Committee. The contrarians barring James’s exit from the mire being the spurned and former News of the World editor, Colin Myler, and the paper’s legal manager, Tom Crone.

With one year and three months to go until the US Presidential election, the race is hotting up on the other side of the Atlantic as Iowa hosts another Republican candidate TV debate on Thursday. The Grand Old Party plans to pit the wits of the Tea Party candidate Michele Bachmann against Mormon Mitt Romney, Republican relic Newt Gingrich, (no applicable adjective) Tim Pawlenty and assorted extras. Expect reasoned, rational debate and a measured retort to last week’s assertion on the US from Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, in which he said America is ‘leeching’ on the world economy.

Thursday is the opening day of golf’s final major of the year, the US PGA Championship in Johns Creek, Georgia. While many will admire the shimmering greens, expansive fairways and overhanging trees – mostly because they find the golf less than enthralling – the atmosphere at this year’s tournament should be somewhat piqued with the return of Tiger Woods who hasn’t won a tournament in almost two years – he’s been a busy man.

The week wouldn’t be complete without an apocalyptic premonition and Friday duly delivers. Greece is set to publish its Q2 growth figures, which will no doubt send the financial markets spiralling into a head-in-hands abyss, the kind to be reprinted on Saturday’s front pages.

Finally, after the weeks of preamble, transfer rumours, holiday pictures and inane tweets – the 2011-12 Premier League season gets underway. Staggered over three days for maximum profitability, not to mention viewing pleasure, Saturday will see Sunderland travel to Anfield as Liverpool’s raft of summer signings enjoy their first competitive outing and Queens Park Rangers host their first Premier League game in 15 years. On Sunday both the current champions and runners up travel to the midlands for those oft-cited tricky games away to West Brom and Stoke, respectively – three points all round then.



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