16 OCTOBER 1999

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qbø APIIIIirl/W el WINDY ® Forced 10 sell his home, Hold . , la, been living in the wilderness for months ... tht, it tt ttwill limit Iri, Iricml. die Priille Minister. ....

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A fundamental howler from the unpredictable Derry Irvine BRUCE ANDERSON T he Committee for Privileges of the House of Lords is not usually a forum for controversy. It normally...

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T he death of a former Guardian editor . is a rare event: until this month the last one to die was A.P. Wadsworth in 1956. Alas- tair Hetherington, who died last week, was, as...

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How my ride to oblivion made a god of me MATTHEW PARRIS W hy do we enjoy fear? Last Saturday and for the first time in my life, I went to Alton Towers. My 16-year-old niece at...

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Matthew d'Ancona hails the majestic contribution of Mickey Mouse — and now Tarzan — to 20th-centuty culture THE thing about Tarzan is he thinks he's Tony Blair. This, at any...

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Mind your language

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SOMEONE asked at a party, 'Are you the Dot Wordsworth?' I am sure they meant it kindly; but I am not sure of the answer. I have never met another D.W. But perhaps the definite...

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Nigel Jones explains how Vienna's populist demagogue could seize power in Germany AUSTRIA, the state tourist board will tell You 1st anders' different'). Although the Alpine...

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Robert Fox reveals what happened on the day the allies went to war IT is lunchtime on Friday, 11 June 1999. Along the Macedonian border, British paratroopers are on standby,...

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Anne McElvoy on those who persuaded Mr Blair to attack 'the forces of conservatism' WOULD Tony Blair make his Bournemouth speech if he had his time over again? The spin doctor...

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Philip Delves Broughton says that Donald Trump's presidential bid is more convincing than his blow-dried, candyfloss hair UP close, Donald Trump looks extraordi- nary. His skin...

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Ross Clark says that trains would be safer if they had no drivers Aslef, the train drivers' union, has threatened to strike. Nothing among the hours of broadcasts and thousands...

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Michael Heath


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Martin Vander Weyer on the Chancellor's sell-off that has turned into a f60-million blunder IT SEEMS to have passed largely without comment that Gordon Brown, our oh-so-...

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Tina Brown's latest two-month-old magazine is on the skids, says Toby Young New York WITHIN the New York media, there's only one topic of conversation these days: the plummeting...

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Oh to be in misery, now that autumn's here! PAUL JOHNSON A utumn has always been a time of reckoning. The harvest is in, we know Where we stand. The waning of the sun, the...

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Why Peter Mandelson put in a call to the editor of the Daily Telegraph STEPHEN GLOVE By way of background, this government regards the Daily Telegraph as enemy numero uno. The...

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Wrong pope

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From Mr John Coggrave Sir: James McDonald in his letter of 2 October attributes the papal encyclicals Mit Brennender Sorge and Divini Redemptoris to Pius XII. He certainly...

Not so soft

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From Mr Howard Blackett Sir: I was delighted to see that Dover Col- lege was featured in Simon Barnes's article on sport in schools (No rough stuff, please, we're British', 9...

From Mr David Heaton Sir: Heard on the West Coast

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line a year or two ago: 'We are sorry this train has stopped. This is due to a lack of forward motion.' David Heaton 53 Murray Road, London SW19

My husband was right

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From Lady Mosley Sir: With reference to my 'disastrous poli- tics' (Books, 9 October), people now have forgotten the misery of Britain in the early Thirties: mass unemployment,...

From Mr Roger Ordish Sir: Boris Johnson speaks of John

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Peel's 'Liverpudlian sort of voice'. John Peel was educated at Shrewsbury and has bravely confessed on the wireless that he used to talk posh, but has since mended his ways and...


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A Virgin impounded From Mr Michael Gadsden Sir: I should like to enter the really silly rail competition ('Heard any good excuses late- ly?', 25 September). On the 6.39 a.m....

From Mr Lionel Trippett Sir: I'm sony that Boris Johnson

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was reject- ed by Radio Four. I was rejected by Radio Five a few months ago. They wanted some- one to comment on a nuclear matter but I was deemed unsuitable on the grounds that...

Ludocrous ideas

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From Mr RA. Massie-Blomfteld Sir: Ludovic Kennedy is nothing if not pre- dictable ('An Atheist in the Pew', 2 Octo- ber). Yet it surprises me that he fails to realise that his...

Good guy, bad guy

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From Mrs M.K Fowler Sir: I was very sorry to read that the BBC has dispensed with Boris Johnson's services as presenter of the programme The Week in Westminster (Another Voice,...

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From Mrs J.R Hereford Sir; How did Richard Balfe get

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selected, let alone elected, as a Labour MEP? Almost every word he utters is Conservative philo- sophy. On an MEP's salary and allowances he can afford to make the choices his...

Churchill and the camps

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From Mr RR. Dear Sir: Andrew Roberts is a talented polemicist, yet the purblind prejudice of They brought it on themselves' (2 October) will surely only appeal to Taki and...

Costs of the Names

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From Catherine Mackenzie Smith Sir: Like most Names, I enjoyed Rod Williams's article on the forthcoming Lloyd's fraud case CA fight to the death', 9 October). However, I must...

Bottom of the class

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From Dr Roger Kingerlee Sir: Richard Balfe Klass vandalism', 9 October) constructs a strong argument in support of his decision to send his children to private schools. It is no...

Nobel Notables

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From Mr Kostas Laskaris Sir: Stephen Schwartz is absolutely right! ('Ignoble Nobel', 9 October). The Nobel prize for literature mostly goes to friends of left-wing dictators. To...

Nicky who?

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From Mr John Dege Sir: Who the devil is this Nicky Haslam, mentioned in both the Taki and Dear Mary columns of your 2 October issue? And why are we expected to be interested in...

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Was Hitler a Nazi because he liked the uniforms? FRANK JOHNSON A Daily Mail news story this week began: 'Hitler was a closet gay'. Apparently he 'had a crush on one of his...

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Nanny was right, and a tartan-clad bogeyman has come to get poor Nat West CHRISTOPHER FILDES A l those broken toys in young Natty West's nursery cupboard have come back to...

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The future began in 1455 Lisa Jardine on the uncanny parallels between the first and second information revolutions BEWILDERMENT, confusion, panic, stress: such are the...

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John Naughton profiles the modest Briton who transformed the world FOR a man who has invented the future, Tim Berners-Lee does not look like a charismatic figure. He is a...

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The scepticism of business towards the Internet is evaporating, says Christopher Hope IF you are one of those people who still talk about the wireless, the 'shock of the new'...

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Christopher Montgomery on the coming age of the talking freezer TODAY isn't quite as the past foresaw it. Few, if any, of us seem to live on the moon with robot butlers....

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Singing in the rain Philip Hen s her IN OFFICE by Norman Lamont Little, Brown, £20, pp. 576 T ime passes, the captains and the kings depart and politics recedes into...

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Snark or Boojum?

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Patrick Skene Catling THE ENIGMA OF GIORGIO DE CHIRICO by Margaret Crosland Peter Owen, 418.95, pp. 158 G iorgio de Chirico (1888-1978) began as a nihilist and worked his way...

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underdog's life James Delingpole THE BOOK OF REVELATION by Rupert Thomson Bloomsbury, £12.99. pp. 220 W hile I was reading Rupert Thom- son's The Book of Revelation in my...


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random harvest D. J. Taylor THE UNFORTUNATES by B.S. Johnson Picador, f18 B ack in his late Sixties heyday B. S. Johnson was, if not exactly a house- hold name, then a figure...

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Crime with a rhyme

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Byron Rogers JACK THE LADYKILLER by H. R. F. Keating Flambard, £7.99, pp. 158 M r H. R. F. Keating has written what the blurb describes as one of the rarest forms known to...

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Monsters and

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dragons P. J. Kavanagh BEOWULF translated by Seamus Heaney Faber, £14.99, pp. 106 There is an Irish flavour to Seamus Heaney's translation from the An g lo-Saxon which is...

Bloodstains and green ink

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Andrew Roberts THE QUEST FOR C by Alan Judd HarperCollins, £19.99, pp. 501 A t 9pm on 2 October 1914, Alistair Cummin g , a 24-year-old subaltern in the Seaforth Highlanders,...

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Survival of the fittest

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Kit McMahon THE BIG FOUR BRITISH BANKS by David Rogers Macmillan Business, £25, pp. 240 T his is a timely book. Of course, books of this kind are always recommended to the...

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A great showman and chronicler

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Mark Haworth-Booth CENTURY by Bruce Bernard Phaidon, 429.99, pp. 1120 N ot long ago the BBC aired a drama serial by Stephen Poliakoff called Shooting the Past. It was a...

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Building a modern nation

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Michael Llewellyn Smith ATATORK by Andrew Mango John Murray, £.30, pp. 666 L ate in his life, as his health deteriorat- ed and his ideas on language and race became...

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Everything by mouth

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Jonathan Keates MY EAST END: A HISTORY OF COCKNEY LONDON by GiIda O'Neill Viking, 116.99, pp. 322 M ettemich's famous dismissal of early 19th-century Italy as merely 'a...

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The key to greatness Harry Eyres sees poetry at the heart of Chopin's music aristocratic composer — perhaps the most disdainfully aristocratic spirit in all music — who became...

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The Triumph of the Baroque, Architecture in Europe 1600-1750 (Palazzina di Caccia di Stupinigi, Turin, till 9 November) A visual feast Selina Mills I n a city that prides...


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Weill and Zemlinsky (South Bank) At loggerheads Michael Tanner peratic action in London last week centred on the South Bank, where in the Queen Elizabeth Hall the very...

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Not so hot Susan Moore H ot. Red-hot. That seemed to be the universal verdict on the market for Ger- man and Austrian art prior to last week's bumper round of sales in London....

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Mark Morris Dance Group (Sadler's Wells Theatre) Feeling its age Giannandrea Poesio I was not surprised to find the Sadler's Wells Theatre packed last Tuesday. Thanks to his...

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The Jew of Malta (Almeida) The Pajama Game (Victoria Palace) In too good taste Sheridan Morley Y our starter for ten: in which play is an entire convent of nuns poisoned by a...

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Ladies who led Ursula Buchan O ne of the more piquant ironies sur- rounding the attempts by women to attain equality in employment with men is the fact that, in the early days...


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Too posh for Saturday Michael Vestey W hat is a Saturday morning voice on Radio Four? Why should there even be such a thing on a network listened to by millions of intelligent...

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Prehistoric piffle James Delingpole I f this column is slightly more rubbishy than usual this week, it's really not my fault. I have just broken my ankle and everything has...

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The turf

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Keep Epsom on the map Robin Oakley U p on the Lambourn Downs at 6.30 a.m one morning recently to see gallops man Eddie Fisher, I was surprised to see an Epsom horse box and...


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The pajama game Mark Law A body in flight is a pleasing sight and the air over Birmingham has been thick with them in recent days. Figures in blue or white pajamas whirl in...

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High life

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A town for all seasons Taki Paris that last shot of whisky or vodka. This time was no exception. I cannot tell you my embarrassment, but, thank God, there were only hacks...

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Country life

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First day out Leanda de Lisle I go shooting for love, but not for love of shooting. In my early twenties, I was will- ing to stand in a biting wind all day for the pleasure of...

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Singular life

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Top marks PetroneIla Wyatt T he other day I went into Chanel in Sloane Street to buy the window displays. Oops. Did I say buy? I meant arrange them, of course. Anyhow, while I...


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Commons win Andrew Robson AN ARGUMENT that used to be put for- ward (by the Commons) for the abolish- ment of hereditary peers — that the Lords would cease to win the annual...

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Four of the best Raymond Keene Karpov – Hasparov: World Championship Moscow 1985; Sicilian Defence I CONTINUE my review of the best in cur- rent UK chess publishing with the...


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Sick joke Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 2106 you were invited to provide a prose narrative with the above as a title, incorporating at least 12 words or phrases normally...

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CROSSWORD 1435: Working party by Columba

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A first prize of £30 and a bottle of Graham's Six Grapes Port for the first correct solution opened on 1 November, with two run- ners-up prizes of 520 (or, for UK solvers, the...

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Si6n Simon

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AS a rule, `fusion' cooking is a synthetic abomination. If you think that's a bit harsh because you really like Vong, I suggest you pop into a newer American import, Asia de...

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Songs of melancholy Simon Barnes THE best bit about watching Ireland play Australia in the rugby World Cup last weekend was half-time. Not just because of the dire quality of...


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Dear Mary. . . Q. What is the protocol regarding the use of remote-control de-locking devices? A car belonging to a neighbour of mine has, on a number of recent occasions,...