12 NOVEMBER 2005

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The politics of terror

The Spectator

W hen history comes to make a final judgment on the Blair government — and we can be forgiven for hoping that moment is not too much longer delayed — there is one key statistic...

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PORTRAIT OF THE WEEK M r Tony Blair, the Prime Minister,

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insisted on pressing ahead with a Bill to allow police to hold anyone suspected of a terrorist offence for 90 days without charge. The government prepared legislation to allow...

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T here was a surreal touch to last Sunday’s newspapers. The

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inside sections, which tend to be prepared a little in advance, brimmed, as usual, with pieces about the delights of living in France. The news pages, by contrast, carried...

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How does Tony survive? Eloquence, unction and the abuse of power

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N o prime minister, with the debatable exception of Anthony Eden, has been held in such low private esteem by senior civil servants as Tony Blair. Cabinet secretaries Robin...

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L es événements in France have provoked self-congratulation here. Apparently, the

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French model of assimilation is bad. If they had our multiculturalism, the celebration of diversity and ethnic monitoring, everything would be much better, it is said. The...

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The crescent of fear

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Rod Liddle goes to Grigny, a suburb south of Paris, and witnesses at first hand the consequences of Muslim reluctance to integrate with French society A s France burned, the...

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Will London burn too?

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Patrick Sookhdeo on the Islamic doctrine of sacred space T revor Phillips, chairman of the Commission for Racial Equality, has warned recently of ‘sleepwalking our way to...

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It’s the demography, stupid

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The French riots are just the beginning, says Mark Steyn . If we continue to accommodate and appease the young, growing Muslim population, Europe will disintegrate ‘W hat does...

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Profiles in courage

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James Delingpole marks Remembrance Sunday with a tribute to the gentle and modest veterans of the second world war H ave you ever escaped from captivity by removing from your...

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Bullying for charity

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Guy Adams says that big charities have developed a taste for bossing us about and getting things banned H ere are three pastimes the government has either banned, is about to...

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Why Britain can’t make it

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Andrew Kenny on how boredom killed British manufacturing Cape Town I can see the progress of Britain better than you because I don’t live there. I did for a while as a young...

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Young people are the business

The Spectator

They are not feckless booze-hounds, says Leo McKinstry . They are clean and sober, and keen on capitalism L azy, ignorant, shallow and irresponsible, more interested in taking...

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Mind your language

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The learned Peter Jones, who always surprises me by how young he is, considering his almost first-hand knowledge of the ancient world, invited or challenged me to explain how...

The silence of the lambs of the BBC

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Andrew Gilligan says the real trouble with the BBC isn’t bias towards New Labour but fear of authority O ne afternoon last month, TV viewers who receive the daily email trailing...

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Why Cameron should avoid Scotland

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Alan Cochrane on the bitching and backbiting that bedevil Scottish politics E leven months ago Kirsty Wark, arguably Britain’s best-known female television presenter, hosted a...

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Proud without prejudice

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From James Landale Sir: I am extremely glad to know that The Spectator watches BBC News 24 (5 November) . However, I fear that your leader writer must have momentarily allowed...

Why migrants are welcome

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From Buks van Rensburg Sir: The article by Richard Ehrman (‘A dying breed’, 5 November) is unnecessarily alarmist. It is the case, as Mr Ehrman claims, that the citizens of...

Fair point

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From Barbara Crowther Sir: Phillip Oppenheim’s article (‘Fairtrade fat cats’, 5 November) misses several key points about Fairtrade. Fairtrade is not about charity. It is about...

Making hatred history

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From Sher Khan Sir: Alasdair Palmer, in his article ‘Muslims are an ethnic group’ (5 November), asserts that the supporters of the government’s Bill to prohibit incitement to...

Reader, I married her

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From John Laughland Sir: My article on luxury fencing bags by Bibikov (Luxury goods, 5 November) omitted an important detail and has consequently caused a stir among the...

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The riots may be just what the French economy needs

The Spectator

A sk any former drug addict. You’ve got to hit rock bottom before you are ready for cold turkey. What France is facing now is the equivalent of waking up on a soiled mattress in...

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A bad hair day for Tony Blair at the Chocolate Factory

The Spectator

R ivers of fudge are to be expected from corporate PR people, but the Cadbury factory at Bourneville has an unusually impressive one — an endless six-feet-wide flow of the soft,...

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Answers to the questions the boffins dismiss as meaningless

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A TV interviewer recently asked Stephen Hawking, author of A Brief History of Time , ‘What existed before the universe began?’ and was snubbed. ‘That’s a meaningless question.’...

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Andrew Robinson Illustrated by Carolyn Gowdy E llen is intrigued by the Star of David tattooed on my right shoulder. She doesn’t care for the symbolism, but it’s in her nature...

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Seeing off the opposition

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Jonathan Sumption T HE T HIRD R EICH IN P OWER , 1933–1939 by Richard J. Evans Penguin/Allen Lane, £30, pp. 901, ISBN 0713996498 ✆ £24 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 I s...

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A disaster waiting to happen

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James Astill T HE A SSASSIN ’ S G ATE : A MERICA IN I RAQ by George Packer Faber, £12.99, pp. 352, ISBN 0571230431 ✆ £10.39 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 N IGHT D RAWS N EAR :...

The Poet’s Voice

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In an Oxford studio Fifty-one years ago This light-voiced, confident, Uppity, arrogant Person who was me Intoned for posterity These verses. Unbelievably, Years afterwards, much...

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Elusive brothers in arms

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Robert Stewart T HE M AN IN THE I RON M ASK by Roger Macdonald Constable, £17.99, pp. 348, ISBN 1845291018 ✆ £14.39 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 T HE F OUR M USKETEERS by...

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A billionaire at bay

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Michael Crick D IRTY P OLITICS , D IRTY T IMES by Michael Ashcroft MAA Publishing, £20, pp. 320, ISBN 1904734111 ✆ £16 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 I n the late 1990s it...

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Chipps with everything

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Christopher Fraser S EAHORSE ! B ETWEEN THE S EA AND THE S ADDLE by Chipps Selby Bennett Halsgrove, £16.99, pp. 400, ISBN 1841144819 C ommander Chipps Selby Bennett was a...

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The still unwithered laurel wreath

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M. R. D. Foot S COTT OF THE A NTARCTIC by David Crane HarperCollins, £25, pp. 657, ISBN 0007159687 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 I n the reviewer’s childhood, Scott was...

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Band of brothers

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P. J. Kavanagh A SHES V ICTORY by the England Cricket Team Orion, £12.99, pp. 208, ISBN 0752875175 ✆ £10.39 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 B EING F REDDIE by Andrew Flintoff...

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The thinking man’s poet

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Rupert Christiansen A RTHUR H UGH C LOUGH by Anthony Kenny Continuum, £25, pp. 304, ISBN 08264738782 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 ‘T he most intellectual British poet...

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The boy done bad

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Simon Heffer T HATCHER ’ S F ORTUNES by Mark Hollingsworth and Paul Halloran Mainstream, £17.99, pp. 400, ISBN 184018972X ✆ £14.30 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 O ne of Sir...

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Small is beautiful

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Paul Binding T HE N ORWEGIAN F EELING FOR R EAL edited by Harald Bache-Wiig, Birgit Bjerck and Jan Kjaerstad Harvill, £16.99, pp. 269, ISBN 184343221 ✆ £13.59 (plus £2.45 p&p)...

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Toeing the party line

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John Michell W HAT W E B ELIEVE B UT C ANNOT P ROVE : T ODAY ’ S L EADING T HINKERS ON S CIENCE IN THE A GE OF C ERTAINTY edited by John Brockman Simon & Schuster, £9.99, pp....

Surprising literary ventures

The Spectator

Gary Dexter T HE E XPLOITS OF M R S AUCY S QUIRREL (1976) by Woodrow Wyatt LORD WYATT of Weeford, Chairman of the Tote, the ‘Voice of Reason’, and the only member of the...

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King and I W e are walking across a long bridge,

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shallowcurved and strumming with cars that skim past us on flat planes of water, fish-belly silver. Alongside the path that drops away from the bridge a fresh white line has...

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Getting to know Powell

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Andrew Lambirth Dancing to the Music of Time: the Life and Work of Anthony Powell Wallace Collection, Manchester Square, W1, until 5 February 2006 novel-readers will be aware...

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Bath on the brink

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Geoffrey Wheatcroft W hen Malcolm Muggeridge recalled the Manchester Guardian he had worked for in the early 1930s and wanted to illustrate its flavour of hand-wringing...

Timeless grace

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Giannandrea Poesio Manon Royal Opera House O , Michael Clark Company The Barbican S ome dance works age, some don’t. Yet it is difficult to pinpoint the factors that bestow...

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Reignited spark

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Marcus Berkmann A ny moment now it will be 25 years since John Lennon died. Twenty-five years! How did that happen? I can remember exactly where I was when I heard about it:...

Thrilled by Ibsen

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Toby Young Pillars of the Community Lyttelton Otherwise Engaged Criterion As You Desire Me Playhouse S ince taking on this job four years ago, I’ve reviewed 289 plays of...

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Listen and learn

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Michael Tanner The Midsummer Marriage Royal Opera House Il diluvio universale Drury Lane M ichael Tippett’s first opera The Midsummer Marriage is so great that one can afford...

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Norman wisdom

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Russell Chamberlin A s a child I would stand looking in fascinated horror at the enormous polar bear pinning down an unfortunate seal. Then on to the equally immense tiger...

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Cult following

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Michael Vestey I ’ve always been amused by certain clubs and cults that people join either to enhance their status and self-importance or merely to be different. The...

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Playing with Shakespeare

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Simon Hoggart T he notion of updating Shakespeare always strikes me as a curious one. For a start it assumes that the audience is stupid. Do we say, ‘I hadn’t realised that...

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Twelve to Follow

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Robin Oakley I was all ready for it to rain on the bonfires last Saturday night. Mrs Oakley’s cat and I share a deep dislike of Guy Fawkes night, in my case induced by going...

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Hot spot

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Taki New York W hen Jean-Marie Le Pen democratically won the right to challenge the incumbent Jacques Chirac for the presidency in 2002, I wrote in this here space that...

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Weighty issues

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Jeremy Clarke L ast week I paid 400 quid for a health screening. I had a number of minor worries — lump on ball, expanding mole, chest pain — that I wanted to clear up but...

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I ’ve been looking forward to the new restaurant Roast for

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ages. It’s the brainchild of Iqbal Wahhab, of Cinnamon Club fame, who, as far as I can gather from what I’ve read, wants to ‘vault British cooking back on the international...

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T his is the first of our two Christmas selections, and

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Armit have come up with an exceedingly generous festive offer. With most of the selections, you get twelve bottles for the price of ten — a substantial discount. This brings...

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The Sultan of Multan

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FRANK KEATING T he one-off splendours of Pakistan’s captain Inzamam-ul-Haq offer a spicy tang to England’s first post-Ashes Test match which begins today in his hometown of...

Q. My wife and I have an old and dear

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friend who lives abroad. She divorced her husband some years ago and lives alone. We are both very fond of her and are usually delighted to see her whenever she is in England....

Q. My partner and I divide our time between our

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apartment in Manhattan and our country house in upstate New York. In the early summer we were invited by our upstate real estate attorney to a large barbecue function hosted by...

Q. Mary, your recent correspondence about gaping pyjamas has prompted

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me to remind you of a related inquiry you handled within living memory. A reader complained that he had a shy friend who would not look him in the eye while they were chatting...