17 AUGUST 1996

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EE O nly sporadic violence followed the banning by police of a march by Apprentice Boys on the walls of Londonderry; the Orangemen marched elsewhere and Nationalists held their...

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JOHN CASEY T he Piltdown Martians will turn out to be a hoax. Let me rephrase that. The puta- tive discovery of fossilised germs in a mete- orite that is alleged to come from...

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Bruce Anderson explains the ideas behind Kemp and the distrust of ideas behind Dole San Diego THE secret service men were a little uneasy. They were protecting the guest of...

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Michael Heath


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Petronella Wyatt sees Bob and Jack arrive by boat. Then she joins in a weep with Nancy for Ron San Diego ON MY arrival at San Diego airport, I was knocked down by an elephant....

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Mind your language

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JUDGING by your letters nothing annoys you more than a neologism. It does not even have to be a real neolo- gism. Someone wrote in to complain of oversight being used in the...

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`DEAR DUCE . . .

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YOURS, CHURCHILL Nicholas Farrell on an Italian conspiracy theory in which a correspondence led to an execution MUSSOLINI and Churchill, though ene- mies, conducted a...

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Second opinion

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IN HIS preface to Martin Chuzzlewit, Charles Dickens answered contempo- rary criticisms that his characters were caricatures. He wrote that what appeared to others as...

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In April, it seemed a good idea to invite them. But now it's mid-August, and Victoria Mather thinks better of it — too late ANY DAY now the gravel will crunch and your...

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It's tourism, according to Alfred Sherman. And none of those economic arguments for it are true THE INCONVENIENCE, hardship and misery inflicted by mass tourism on those who...

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Andrew Gimson compares and contrasts German army policy on sex with that of UK and US forces Berlin THE GERMAN government has ruled that male and female German soldiers are...

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It is not true that there are no good causes ending abortion is one PAUL JOHNSON A bortion is the most difficult and important issue facing advanced societies today. It is the...

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Take it easy, Mr Bond, help is on the way Miss Moneypenny will fix it CHRISTOPHER FILDES W hat a thing to say in front of Vir- ginia Bottomley. Sean Connery pops up in...

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Sir: Tunku Varadarajan's article would have come as no surprise

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to the hierarchy of the Victorian Indian Empire. That dis- tinguished warrior General Sir John Jacob ( 1 812-58), after whom Jacobabad is named, laid it down as a guiding rule...


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Gentlemen v. players Sir: In defence of the BOR — British Other Ranks — it should be understood that until well into the second world war a soldier could be stationed in India...

Sir: Tunku Varadarajan is correct in what he writes about

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NCOs in the British army. Our very hardness, loutishness and coarse- ness have stood us in good stead when the going got tough. Perhaps, though, it could be explained therefore...

Sir: Although I love cricket, I really have little interest

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in the infantile squabble between, Botham and Imran Khan, but as one of the NCOs who served in India in the days of the Raj I do object strongly to Tunku Varadarajan's...

Mr Said's gift

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Sir: Paul Johnson refers to a shabby little left-winger who is prejudiced against indus- try and independent schools and probably an atheist (And another thing, 3 August)....

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Altered states

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Sir: My article on the Yasukuni shrine, as published ('Japan's PM defies a taboo', 10 August), refers to its associations with 'the state religion of Shinto'. What I actually...

Living with Russia

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Sir: Frank Johnson's thoughtful analysis of Russia's love-hate affair with the West mer- its attention (Leading article, 22 June). Regrettably, Russian society and, in par-...

. Protesting too much

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Sir: I can hardly blame Michael CoveneY for using your letters pages to try and get his own back on me (10 August). He still bears some ugly scars from his last effort to...

A Canadian invention

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Sir: Taki's column refers to 'Afro-freaks' and to 'jumping up high to grab mangoes, coconuts, even bananas' (High life, 27 July). I know that The Spectator, a magazine for the...

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Yes, the News of the World wants its freak show, but for once someone else confused the facts STEPHEN GLOVER M ost newspapers fight shy of abor- tion. Like God, it divides...

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Casting a cold eye Philip Hensher ASYLUM by Patrick McGrath Viking, L76, pp. 256 P atrick McGrath is one of few contem- porary novelists interested in gothic horror and in...

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Too true to be good

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Anita Brookner THE ARIZONA GAME by Georgina Hammick Chatto, £14.99, pp. 285 T his is Georgina Hammick's first novel, which to those who know her as a sly and witty short-story...

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Seeing is believing

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Tom Sutcliffe WAGNER by Michael Tanner HarperCollins, £16.99, pp. 236 M ichael Tanner brings to Wagner the instincts of a teacher of philosophy. He wants to try to answer some...

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Neighbours become good friends?

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M. R. D. Foot FRANCE AND BRITAIN, 1900-1940 by P. M. H. Bell Longman, £38, £12.99, pp. 275 T his book gives an entertaining, judicious overview of 40 years of our relations with...

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They forgot to remember to forget

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Carole Angier THE EMIGRANTS by W. G. Sebald, translated by Michael Hulse Harvill, £14.99, pp. 237 T he Emigrants is not only about emigra- tion. It is about internal as well as...

Justified by

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genius Jane Gardam MATISSE'S WAR by Peter Everett Cape, £15.99, pp. 332 I can never get straight whether Picasso said, 'There is only Matisse,' or 'There is only one...

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Savvy and noblesse oblige

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William Scammell LADY GREGORY'S DIARIES, 1892-1902 edited by James Pethica Colin Smythe, £35, pp. 346 L ady Augusta Gregory is best known as one of the founders of the Irish...

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When the bandages came off

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Michael Church THE MAN WHO LOVED A POLAR BEAR AND OTHER PSYCHOTHERAPIST'S TALES by Robert U. Akeret Constable, £14.95, pp. 235 J udging by the way it's talked about in the...

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Exhibitions 1 Alberto Giacometti (Scottish National Gallery of Art, Edinburgh, till 22 Sept, then at the Royal Academy, London, from 9 Oct till 1 Jan) Giacometti's vision of...

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Exhibitions 2

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Craigie Aitchison (Gallery of Modem Art, Glasgow, till 8 September) Scotland's unsung son Andrew Lambirth C raigie Aitchison, born Edinburgh 1926, is one of Scotland's most...

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Josip Plecnik (Prague Castle, till 29 September) Prague beckons Gavin Stamp Prague There are many good reasons for visit- ing Prague, that most beautiful city of Baroque and...


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The rosarian chasm Ursula Buchan T he rose is our national flower, an icon, a symbol, rich in cultural and historical sig- nificance. It is also a garden flower and probably...

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Mu sic

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Russian flamboyance Peter Phillips T he Proms debut of Mikhail Pletnev's Russian National Orchestra (8 August) has been a high point of the season thus far. Formed in 1990...

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Ermione (Glyndebourne) Frowning and scowling Michael Tanner R ossini's Ermione is what might be called an ideal Glyndebourne opera: it is quite short, at just over two hours;...

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Nick of Time (18, selected cinemas) Last Dance (18, selected cinemas) The Crossing Guard (15, selected cinemas) Moral vacuum Mark Steyn V olence underpins so much of Holly-...


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The Fantasticks (King's Head) Hedda Gabler (Donmar Warehouse) Hedda Gabler (Minerva, Chichester) A fey fable Sheridan Morley T heatrically, long runs don't have a lot to do...

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Guessing games Michael Vestey I magine these two scenarios: Britain has a Stuart king, France as the leading world power controls with Britain what are now the United States...

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Old favourites Simon Hoggart B BC 2 has started repeating Hancock, a programme which began on television 40 Years ago. Though I was a small boy then, I can remember how funny...

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The turf

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Patience pays Robin Oakley W hen the future Liberal Prime Min- ister Lord Rosebery was told by the Oxford authorities that owning racehorses was not consistent with...

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Low life

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I beg your pardon-.. . Jeffrey Bernard I t seems that I have upset the nurses on the ward that I have become almost a per- manent fixture in. Not long ago, I wrote referring...

High life

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Not such a big deal Taki Gstaad If one believes in that most cynical of premises that tells us that nothing counts a lot and very little counts at all, turning 60 isn't such a...

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Country life

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A village affair Leanda de Lisle T he Cadeby church fête wasn't held at the rectory as the Church Commissioners sold it off long ago. As a matter of fact, it is up for sale...


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Starting low Andrew Robson WHAT WOULD you open the bidding with all 13 spades? Given that there are more grains of sand in the world than the number of deals necessary to make...

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IN•TUE•STRANI) SIMPSON'S IN•THE•STRAND CHESS Overdue Raymond Keene BEFORE the 1950s the titles of master and grandmaster were awarded more by general acclaim than by...

J 11,11011.10 MIMI

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URA 1 ISLE OF II 1.11.1,010. 1 " , COMPETITION Silly season Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 1945 you were invited to provide an imaginary news item appropriate to the 'silly...

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A first prize of £25 and a bottle of Graham's Late Bottled Vintage 1989 Port for the first correct solution opened on 2 September, with two runners-up prizes of £15 (or, for UK...

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Alas, poor Kevin Simon Barnes SPORT is, if nothing else, about heroes. It provides a simple framework in which one person can prevail over others. But nothing is interesting...


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Dear Mary.. . Q. I am a trainer and recently, on my way to saddle a runner at an evening meeting at Chepstow, I arrived at the toll-gate of the Severn Bridge only to find that...