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The Spectator

P arliament was recalled to debate the world crisis following the attack on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center. The Prime Minister, Tony Blair, described the event as of...

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The Spectator

T he United States has the right and the duty to punish — no, to eliminate entirely from the face of the earth — the perpetrators and material abetters of the attacks on New...

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The Spectator

W e had wondered whether to cancel the press call which was set to start at exactly 11 a.m. on Friday 14 September. Compassion in World Farming had booked the Methodist Central...

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This unprecedented display of mass disloyalty in the Conservative party

The Spectator

PETER OBORNE B y far the most noteworthy feature of the Duncan Smith shadow administration is the large number of people who have refused to serve in it. At least 12 MPs either...

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Belief in Paradise is a recipe for hell on earth

The Spectator

MATTHEW PARRIS T 0 anyone but the believer, does it matter whether there is an after-life? Is it anybody's business but the believer's? Are we intruding — is it rude? — when we...

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The Spectator

Stephen Schwartz on the extreme Islamic sect that inspires Osama bin Laden as well as all Muslim suicide bombers — and is subsidised by Saudi Arabia Washington THE first thing...

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Mind your language

The Spectator

MY husband spent a suspiciously long time in front of the television pictures of the World Trade Center disaster. I do not say he is utterly without feeling, but I sometimes...

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The Spectator

Clare Short tells Boris Johnson that we should stop bombing Iraq, and that this is no crusade IT is by now a commonplace that Clare Short is the exact opposite of the left-wing...

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The Spectator

Julian Manyon says that the Americans are up against a foe with different dreams and a different attention span Islamabad THE word 'historic' has been devalued by the...

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The Spectator

Bruce Anderson argues that Osama bin Laden will be a far harder target than the Iraqis in Kuwait THE moral imperative has rarely been clearer; the difficulty of responding to...

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The Spectator

Philip Hensher says that British experience shows that an invasion of Afghanistan could lead to another Vietnam TAKE this, if you will, as a fable. It is a true story,...

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The Spectator

Andrew Gimson has been talking to Muslims in Britain about the implications of the suicide attacks on New York and Washington IN the bookshop of the East London Mosque in...

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Ancient & modern

The Spectator

INTERNATIONAL suicide terrorism was impossible in the ancient world (except for Samson?): the weapons and ideology did not exist. Its nearest equivalent in results was the...


The Spectator

Ross Clark says there's a hint of Dianaism in the air as well as a superstitious obsession with security AGAINST the events of 11 September, my train horror outside Cambridge...

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Patrick Cosgrave

The Spectator

Patrick Cosgrave, who died this week at the age of 59, was political editor of The Spectator from 1971 to 1975, and a key figure in the rise of Margaret Thatcher. Below we print...

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The Spectator

In an open letter, Norman Tebbit urges lain Duncan Smith to forget the Eurozealots and concentrate on what the people want DEAR lain, You could hardly have chosen a more...

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The Spectator

As Al opens, Matthew d'Ancona reports on the fri endship between the film's director; Steven Spielberg and our android Prime Minister EVEN after the American nightmare —...

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The Spectator

Mark Steyn says that the Anglo-American alliance can win this war without any help from its less robust friends New Hampshire THE best quote of the war so far came from George...

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Banned wagon

The Spectator

A weekly survey of the things our rulers want to prohibit THE campaign to force the Welsh language upon the five out of six Welsh people who do not speak it goes on apace. The...

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The latest Frankenstein's monster is a revitalisation of the Dark Ages

The Spectator

PAUL JOHNSON I n these times when we are being made frighteningly aware of the implacable ferocity of the East, I have been turning to Kipling, who devoted his genius to making...

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The war against terrorism

The Spectator

From Sir Michael Howard Sir: Historical analogies are almost always misleading: but with so many people referring to 1939 and 1941, may I gently remind your readers of what...

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Lord Haskins replies

The Spectator

From Lord Haskins Sir: George Monbiot's article on me (`Lord of all he purveys', 1 September) spectacularly refuses to allow the facts to undermine his prejudices. In Monbiot's...

Chiluba and the Queen

The Spectator

From S.K Mubulavanu Sir: With reference to the facetious and rather unpleasant article 'Right, said Fred' (1 September), the Zambia High Commission would like to point out,...

Wellington as PM

The Spectator

From Professor C. Bell Sir: In reviewing Andrew Roberts's recent volume Napoleon and Wellington (Books, 25 August), Jane Ridley summarises the Duke's prime ministership as a...

The Clive James rule

The Spectator

From Mr Christopher Bray Sir: The best way I know for remembering when to use the word scepticism and when cynicism (Mind your language, 15 September) is what I call the Clive...

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Thank God for the Guardian and the Observer: at least they are getting a debate going

The Spectator

STEPHEN GLOVER T here is no political debate about what happened in New York and Washington. Tony Blair and fain Duncan Smith have virtually closed that down by saying that we...

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A bad week for freedom, and I fear more casualties still to come

The Spectator

CHRISTOPHER FILDES I would not care to live through such a week in the markets again, but others were denied the choice. The casualty lists from the World Trade Center are...

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Tarting up the word

The Spectator

Bevis Hillier FRONT COVER: GREAT BOOK JACKET AND COVER DESIGN by Alan Powers Mitchell Beazley, £20, pp. 144, ISBN 1840004215 I n 1956 Nancy Mitford contributed, with Alan S. C....

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Grease and fever

The Spectator

Peter Mullen TAKING STOCK: CONFESSIONS OF A CITY PRIEST by Victor Stock HarperCollins, £15.99, pp. 368, ISBN 0002740699 F ather Victor Stock is the colourful, dazzlingly witty,...

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Paradigms and paradoxes

The Spectator

Raymond Carr DOUBTS AND LOVES by Richard Holloway Canongate. £16.99, pp. 360, ISBN 184195I79X A t the Lambeth Conference of 1988, a majority of the Anglican bishops not only...

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The knave

The Spectator

of hearts Harriet Waugh ADAM AND EVE AND PINCH ME by Ruth Rendell Hutchinson, £16.99, pp. 400, ISBN 009179434X 'A dam and Eve and Pinch Me went down to the river to bathe....

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The Haig of WWII?

The Spectator

Alistair Horne BOMBER HARRIS: HIS LIFE AND TIMES by Henry Probert Greenhill. £25, pp. 432 ISBN 1853674737 I n Turville churchyard next to where I live stands a headstone to a...

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Is Mummy out of date?

The Spectator

Andrew Gim s on MIXED FEELINGS: THE COMPLEX LIVES OF MIXED-RACE BRITONS by Yasmin Alibhai-Brown The Women's Press, £11.99, pp. 204, ISBN 0704347067 Y asmin Alibhai-Brown...

Ideal English taste

The Spectator

John Martin Robinson EDWIN LUTYENS: COUNTRY HOUSES by Gavin Stamp Aururn, £35, pp. 192, ISBN 1854107631 F or over a 100 years Country Life has published weekly articles on...

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Range but no passion

The Spectator

Alberto Manguel STRANGER SHORES: ESSAYS 1986-1999 by J. M. Coetzee Seeker, £17.99, pp. 374, ISBN 0436 233916 T he daisy chain of readers reading readers threatens to become...

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A fruitful sisterhood but without procreation

The Spectator

Miranda France MOMENTS OF TRUTH by Lorna Sage Fourth Estate, £15, pp .252, ISBN 1841156353 I have always approached literary studies that set women apart from men with a...

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Mother Superior jumps the gun

The Spectator

Henry Porter OPEN SECRET by Stella Rimington Hutchinson, £18.99, pp. 296, ISBN 0091793602 h e Mother Superior has said she is willing to have sex. Prior to getting into bed she...

The tristesse

The Spectator

of Trieste Sara Wheeler TRIESTE AND THE MEANING OF NOWHERE by Jan Morris Faber, 116.99, pp. 196, ISBN 0571204430 T rieste, as Jan Morris readily admits at the beginning of her...

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In pursuit of the full monty

The Spectator

Andrew Duff THE ASHDOWN DIARIES, VOLUME II, 1997-1999 by Paddy Ashdown Penguin, £20, pp. 592, ISBN 0713995114 B est not to start this book unless you're fighting fit. In over...

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The new and the true

The Spectator

Martin Gaylord on the meaning behind the mysterious work of Frank Auerbach T he first impression you receive on walking into the stunning Frank Auerbach retrospective at the...

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The Spectator

Leonore (Welsh National Opera) Fascinating familiarity Michael Tanner 0 pportunities to see Beethoven's Leonore, as the first version of his opera is traditionally called, in...

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The Spectator

Masaccio: The Pisa Altarpiece (National Gallery, till 11 November) Gift for understatement Bruce Boucher F or an artist of few works, Masaccio played a crucial part in the...

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The Spectator

Platonov (Almeida) Putting It Together (Minerva, Chichester) Epic curiosity Sheridan Morley P latonov has always been the impossible Chekhov. A seven-hour, untitled...

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The Spectator

Inflicting real pain Mark Steyn on how the events of 11 September were eerily reminiscent of Hollywood g I t was like something out of a movie.' Not everyone said that, but...

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The Spectator

Birmingham Royal Ballet (Sadler's Wells) Verdi winner Giannandrea Poesio A though Giuseppe Verdi's ballet music might not be every musicologist's desert-island choice, there...

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The Spectator

Prodigal harvest Ursula Buchan I t seemed about as ill a wind as there could be. The highest autumn and winter rainfall since records began brought extensive flooding in its...

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The Spectator

Short shrift Michael Vestey I t was television's moment, really, the dreadful, unprecedented pictures of passenger jets crashing into the World Trade Center in New York. The...


The Spectator

Intense emotions Simon Hoggart A times like this the newspapers beat a constant funeral march, instructing us to go about our business to the background of muffled drums....

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The turf

The Spectator

Pocket sensation Robin Oakley J oining jockey Paul Doe for breakfast at Clear Height Stables in Epsom, I had imagined he might, like most riders I know, toy with a slice of...

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High life

The Spectator

The chaos theory Taki V e Rougemont ry long ago, the age of the Gods was challenged by the rise of individual men. Kings and heroes came onto the scene and one of them,...

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Low life

The Spectator

Living with luck Jeremy Clarke L et's 'ave a look at yer 'and then, dearie,' said Gypsy Lee. I offered her my left, which she accepted with both hands. She caressed my palm...

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Singular life

The Spectator

The lying game PetroneIla Wyatt T he other day a man in a bookshop asked me if I had read a certain paperback thriller that he had picked up from the shelf. And if so was it...

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Bunker America

The Spectator

Simon Barnes IN Anne Tyler's book The Accidental Tourist, the hero writes travel books with whose help the reader can feel that wherever he is in the world, he is still snugly...


The Spectator

Dear Mary. . . Q. Like many of my neighbours, I walk my dogs each day along a virtually traffic-free country lane. The lane is a minefield of dogs' messes, and I wonder if...