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One gesture well worth making

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• lie horror 0 e f the Soviet occupation of khoslovakia mounts with each passing 1; 41 ' , and with it the humiliating sense of help- 4 `441 ess with which the outside world...

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Life on the dole

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Mr Richard Crossman has a priceless gift for the telling indiscretion. His latest effort in this field has produced the assertion that a man with a large family who found...


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'Dear friends, brothers by blood, brothers by the pen . . . Forgive us and forgive Russia. She is not to blame for the tears you are shed- ding today. Long live reason.' Thus...

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It pays to advertise

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CHRISTOPHER HOLLIS Advertisements are to be screened between Sunday evening ITV religious programmes. Fight the good fight with all thy might. (Let Bizno keep your shirt front...

A plea to Mr. Michael Stewart

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POLITICAL COMMENTARY AUBERON WAUGH Mr du Cann could scarcely have picked a more explosive moment to throw his custard pie at Mr Heath's leadership. Garden fêtes at Curry Rivel,...

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The fading navy

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DEFENCE DESMOND WETTERN In surveying the European scene in the after- math of the Russian invasion of Czecho- slovakia foreign affairs commentators have looked around for...

A hundred years ago

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From the 'Spectator', 12 September 1868—The Cab Strike has taken place, and failed—as was to be supposed from a proceeding which beat any Irish bull that was ever made for...

Army of martyrs

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AMERICA HUGH BROGAN Washington—It was impossible to experience the Democratic convention in Chicago without feeling that some sort of turning-point had been passed. Some, no...

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The strains of opposition

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CONSERVATIVES JOCK BRUCE-GARDYNE, MP I confess that I am not as regular a reader of the Political Quarterly as I ought to be. So it is only now, in between bouts of building...

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Law and disorder

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DEMONSTRATIONS R. A. CLINE A peaceful political march is a sight to which Londoners and the inhabitants of other towns (not excluding Jarrow) have become almost complacently...

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STRIX I sympathise but 1 do not agree with people who demand the severance of all cultural rela- tions with the USSR. I do not believe that such a step would 'bring home' to...

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On living with pain

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PERSONAL COLUMN KENNETH ALLSOP A friend in need is a friend indeed. The good Samaritan. It takes all sorts to make a world. Nobody wants you when you're down and out....

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THE PRESS BILL GRUNDY I once knew a man, obsessionally anti-Catholic, who, whenever he got steamed up about some- thing, would dash off a message to the Pope. All the letters...

Soccer on velvet

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SPORT MICHAEL WALE The memory of attending a cup match between Spurs and Burnley some years ago in mid- winter, warmed only by whiskies dispensed from an open-air bar garlanded...

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Corn time

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• TELEVISION STUART HOOD A couple of Saturdays ago I turned on my set to catch Tom Grattan's War, Yorkshire Tele- vision's children's serial, which—to judge by the way Donald...

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Those silly 'twenties

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TABLE TALK DENIS BROGAN In my late teens and in my twenties, I was a committed reader of novels. I was also a reader of a good many other things, as indeed I still am, although...

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It goes without Synge

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BOOKS HENRY TUBE Brian O'Nolan, alias Flann O'Brien the novelist, alias Myles na gCopaleen the columnist, died in 1966. Not having followed his column as it appeared in the...

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Imperial sickness

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J. ENOCH POWELL The Fall of the British Empire 1918-1968 Colin Cross (Hodder and Stoughton 55s) The British Empire was an historical accident, a by-product of the first...

Elgin and Churchill at the Colonial Office 1905 - 1908 Ronald Hyam

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(Macmillan 120s) R.I.P. IAIN MACLEOD I cannot imagine why three of the dullest years in the history of the Colonial Office (of blessed memory) hold such attraction for Ronald...

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Early Americans

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RICHARD BRETT-SMITH The History of the United States John A. Garraty (Allen Lane the Penguin Press 95s) The Great Revolt and its Leaders Carleton Beals (Abelard-Schuman 40s)...

Two survivors

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DAVID WILLIAMS Disenchantment C. E. Montague (MacGibbon and Kee 30s) A Life Apart Alan Thomas (Gollancz 28s) These two books, both absorbing in their different ways, have this...

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Pros and cons

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R. F. HARROD This book consists in large part of quotations from economists, especially from those who have ventured from time to time to make com- ments on public affairs. It...

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Soothsayers BARRY COLE Under a Glass Bell Anais Nin (Peter Owen 32s 6d) The Revolutionary Hans Koningsberger (Andre Deutsch 25s) Watcher in the Park Marianne Sinclair...


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J. 0. URNISON In 1965 John Cage gave a talk in Ann Arbor, lasting between an hour and a half and two hours, which was randomly relayed to the audience by a set of loudspeakers...

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Candy cut

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ED FISHER The cuts in Candy sounded hopeful. I looked immediately for improvements, ready to enjoy the promised irony of seeing Candy face- lifted into a better book, a...

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• Profligate painter ARTS

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PAUL GRINKE The name of John Hamilton Mortimer hardly springs readily to the lips when eighteenth cen- tury English art is invoked, but a small band of devotees on both sides...

New favourites Num

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MICHAEL NYMAN Just picture the scene. Music critic on psychia- trist's couch in an agony of self-accusation. 'My life is nothing but artistic 'tor journalistic] necrophilia,'...

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Slick dick PENELOPE HOUSTON Romance for Trumpet (Paris-Pullman, 'A') Bezhin Meadow (Paris-Pullman, V') Last week's film about shady goings-on in the London police force had...

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Farewell to reserve sterling

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MONEY NICHOLAS DAVENPORT At long last the great Basle agreement for the support of sterling—described here on 12 July—has been sewn up by the central bankers. Credit has...

Uneasy economy

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ISRAEL PAMELA FERGUSON The chemistry PhD I met in Jerusalem was typical of the young men who will shape Israel's economy through the 'seventies. He had completed his...

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Leaves from a management gamebook

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BUSINESS VIEWPOINT PETER BROOKE Peter Brooke is managing director of Spencer Stuart and Associates, management consultants specialising in executive search. That metaphysical...

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Metal fatigue

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PORTFOLIO JOHN BULL Last week I described Lonrho, the African trading group with a London quotation, as a speculation. The share price had shot up from around 21s to 37s on the...

ffolkes's business types

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Credo of a penal reformer

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Sir: Mr Giles Playfair is doing my work for me (Letters, 6 September). The huge increase in- crime and the tendency towards a reforma- tive and humanitarian penal policy run...

Keeping faith with Europe

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Sir: In your front-page editorial (6 September) you make a plea that we should do all we can to bolster Czech resistance. The point is, what can the 'ordinary person' —the...

Sir: The British public have been told that the Nigerian

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war is between a federal govern- ment and a 'breakaway' revolting province taking the name of Biafra. In strictly political terms this may be accurate, but it is entirely...

Dereliction of duty

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LETTERS From: Ewan Milne, Gerald Sparrow, Barbara Cowell, John Braine, R. L. Travers, William Afton, Douglas Woodruff, Lady Kelly, Miss E. M. J. Pleister, Hugh Trevor-Roper,...


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Market report Electricals have hogged the limelight again this week. English Electric has countered Plessey's bid by asking GEC to take it over. Thus the outstanding question...

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Sir: All who had pleasure in, and admiration for, Harold

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Nicolson's 'Marginal Comments,' and his broadcasts during the 1930s decade must be greatly saddened by the revelation of the seamy, sordid and foolish side of Nicolson which we...

Sir: I regret that, in my review of Harold Nicolson,

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Diaries and Letters 1945-62 (6 Sep- tember), I made a factual error. I wrote that Nicolson typed out his diary 'in revised and publishable form.' It has now been pointed out to...

Sir: It is interesting to know that Sir Denis Brogan

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no longer practises the faith of his fathers (Letters, 6 September), but I doubt if he has heard the last word on this from his ancestral voices. That these are still with him...

Causa finita est?

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Sir: It is an old journalistic trick to attribute to one's opponent things he did not say, and then to knock down the skittle that one has then set up. Sir Denis Brogan's...

A moral primer

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Sir: I have read with interest Simon Raven's 'Moral primer for the young.' Apart from the quaint eighteenth century style of his writing. it seems on the whole to make good...

Lord Cranfield as he wasn't

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Sir: As one of the hundreds of authors whti were lucidly and kindly reviewed by Harold Nicolson, how could one not shrink mentally from the inelegant and biased criticisms of...


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Sir: If Strix (6 September) can't see that the purpose of our letter to The Times was to point out the absurdity of an PAP not receiving an official notification of an Emergency...

Land of humbug and cant

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Sir : The title 'Table Talk' is disarming, and does not invite too close scrutiny, especially where the author is usually so fair-minded. But when Sir Denis Brogan takes a wide...

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If we had 'the dibs'

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Sir: 'Take care of the pence and the pounds will take care of themselves'; but what of the new pence? The new pennies have yet to acquire a com- mon name and must remain...

The MCC scores a duck

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Sir: As one of those moo members who have reacted strongly in support of the effort being made to get our club to do something about the preposterous omission of d'Oliveira (in...

The swing-doors of perception

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AFTERTHOUGHT JOHN WELLS - One of the world's most notorious drug-sodden pop tycoons raised eyebrows privately in Soho this week by admitting that he was in the grip of a new...

The operation

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Sir: You say it is twenty years since Harold Acton wrote a short story (23 August). Let's hope it is twenty years before he writes another. We don't like gutter press...

The gold game

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Sir: Please allow me to correct an unfortunate slip in my article last week. In ten years' time the industrial and ornamental uses of gold will take 100 per cent of the present...

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Chess no. 404

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PHILIDOR Black White 9 men 7 men E. Rukhrs (1st Prize, Estonia, 1956). White to play and mate in two moves; solution next week. Solution to no. 403 (Berger): R–KB1 11, no...

Crossword no.1343

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Across 1 How can you countenance such treatment? (6) 4 What's Alec doing under the blow? (8) 10 Like those who hanged their harps upon the willows (7) 11 One short of an XI at...


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No. 518: Paper chase Competitors are invited to compose an appro- priate and outrageous story (maximum 150 words) using one or other of the following headlines from last...