26 JULY 2003

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D r David Kelly, a Ministry of Defence scientific expert on

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Iraqi weapons, was found dead near his home in Oxfordshire with a cut wrist and a container of pain-killers. Hours earlier he had appeared before the Commons foreign affairs...

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The enemies of truth

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N ot since the end of the war, and the flight of Saddam Hussein, have the skies of Baghdad been so illuminated with gunfire. Uday and Qusay, the tyrant's princes, have at last...

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I am invited to the Oxford Union to speak in the

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last debate of the term. I had originally been invited to speak on the death of feminism earlier in the year, but as I couldn't go they kindly invited me back. The motion is...

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The sinister reason why the Murdoch press is attacking the BBC

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0 ne person I have been feeling a little sorry for over the past few days is Charles Moore, editor of the Daily Telegraph. His newspaper was a fervent supporter of the war...

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The Questing Voie he departure of Sir David Manning as

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our new ambassador to Washington comes, most will think, not a moment too soon — even if it does deprive the PM of his foreign-policy adviser. Privately, there have been gaskets...

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A despicable and cowardly diversion

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Rod Liddle defends Andrew Gilligan and says the government's confected outrage has led to tragedy T here was a strange sort of hiatus between Andrew Gilligan's report on the...

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The fa guy

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Peter Oborne traces the leaking of Dr Kelly's name back to Downing Street T he lightening of Tony Blair's mood on Sunday afternoon was palpable. For two days, ever since news...

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Mind your language

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Britain invented lasagne, according to a front-page report in the Daily Telegraph. The claim came from organisers of a mediaeval banquet at Berkeley Castle. They appealed to...

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Black-eyed monster

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Theodore Dalrymple observes an increase in sexual jealousy and the violence that follows I , f you exclude the hypothesis that most British official statistics have been...

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'Good things are

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happening in Iraq' Simon Heifer interviews the King of Bahrain who applauds the actions of America and Britain lover lives, and will lie in wait for him and there attack him. I...

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Ancient & modern

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Poor old Archbeard of Canterbury! Who will rid him of these infernal gay priests? Or infernal anti-gay priests? Ancient Greeks would have found the whole issue baffling. First,...

Sword of honour

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Paul Robinson on the ancient code of insult and revenge that is still prevalent in the American South 1 f you are looking for some fun, and have a research grant to spend, try...

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/ n this mini-bar we have four wines which ought to be hugely popular, but aren't. Their regions are paying the price for past misjudgments and greed. Thanks to Liebfraumilch —...

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My hero

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Bruce Anderson says David Cameron, the young Tory MP, has all the qualities needed to rescue the party _ IF . ew Tory MPs set off for the sum mer recess in a confident mood....

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Banned wagon: global

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A weekly sutvey of world restrictions on freedom and free trade Anyone who believes that the anticompetitive ethos in state schools originates with a handful of ideologues in...

Boycott Britain

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Leo McKinstry says that the tourism industry is suffering because of our extortionate hotels, contemptuous service and revolting food he British tourism industry appears to be...

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f)i- ) ] I.] Di _I

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THEODORE DALRYMPLE What a fine and delicate, yet powerful instrument is the human mind! You fill it with information, and out comes the sheerest error! There is no conclusion...

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Why there is no such thing as a straight banana

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I _ have just peeled and eaten a banana. Now that indeed is an exercise in natural luxury: the ease with which the stem is snapped open and the warm yellow skin is drawn away...

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Being on the radio was a welcome relief from duck husbandry

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et me tell you the story of the Docklands Eight, otherwise known as the Docklands ducklings. They came into my life briefly and by chance, ushered ifi by Kim. Kim helps me keep...

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Against the war and Saddam

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From Nicholas Martin Sir: Your leading article (19 July) stated that 'to oppose the war meant, objectively, that you opposed the removal of Saddam. To oppose the removal of...


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From John ilIcKerrow Sir: Mark Steyn's apologia for the Bush camp is so absolute that I often wonder if he possesses any objectivity whatsoever (`No flies on Bush', 19 July)....

Policing the parking

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From Brian Connell Sir: James Fletcher's letter (19 July) incorrectly alleges that Westminster 'persecutes motorists 24 hours a day' without parking controls. It is important to...

From Valerie A. Fowler Sir: With regard to Dr Lynch's

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letter in your illustrious magazine (12 July), I parked my car in Molesford Road SW6, a fairly cosmopolitan area of London, where I came upon a very English (white) gentleman...

In praise of prizes

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From Martyn Goff OBE Sir: It's always a shame when a journalist you have read for years and greatly admired writes appalling nonsense as Paul Johnson has done (And another...

A moral man?

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From Frederick Forsyth Sir: For six years hardly a media reference has been made to our Prime Minister that did not also make mention of his deep religiosity, churchgoing,...

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Evil hearts

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From Floyd Kermode Sir: I am not surprised that Rachel Boyce (`Girls just want to have funds', 12 July) doesn't want to tell her boyfriend about joining Hearts. He may have...

Public spirit

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From M.R. Farrant Sir: I am one of the 'delightful people, public-spirited' middle-class supporters of the Labour party to whom Andrew Gimson refers (Politics, 19 July). I can...

Feast of fun

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From Rod McLoughlin Sir: Tim Footman (Letters, 28 June) is quite right about Desperate Dan and his cow pie. The locus classicus for mashed potato with sticky-up sausages is, of...

Language of fate

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From Brenda Scott Sir: Apropos Matthew Parris's comments on his efforts to propitiate fate (Another voice, 12 July), I shared his desire to touch wood until I lived in Italy,...

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The world's big four

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Norman Lebrecht A TALE OF FOUR HOUSES: OPERA AT COVENT GARDEN, LA SCALA, VIENNA AND THE MET SINCE 1945 by Susie Gilbert and Jay Shir HarperCollins. 80.00, pp. 952 ISBN...

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News on the Rialto

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Anne Chisholm PARADISE OF CITIES by John Julius Norwich Viking, £20.00, pp. 283 ISBN 06708940IX T o read this learned, entertaining and expert book about 19th-century Venice is...

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Too high with some guy in the s

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Miranda Seymour AMY JOHNSON by Midge Gillies Weide*ld & Nicolson, £20.00, pp. 384 ISBN 0297829823 1 n the summer of 1930, Amy Johnson made a solo flight from Croydon airport to...

Voyages without maps

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John de Falbe FITZROY: THE REMARKABLE STORY OF DARWIN'S CAPTAIN AND THE INVENTION OF THE WEATHER FORECAST by John and Mary Gribbin Headline, £18.99, pp. 336 ISBN 0755311817...

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The mother of all mothers

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Frederick Raphael WHISTLER AND HIS MOTHER: AN UNEXPECTED RELATIONSHIP by Sarah Walden Gibson Square Books, £15.99, pp. 304 ISBN 1903933285 A sked how he came to be born in...

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The critical eye of a single woman

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Jane Gardam CARLYLE'S HOUSE AND OTHER SKETCHES by Virginia Woolf Hespents, f4.99, pp. 88 ISBN 1843910551 W hen Virginia Woolf was 27 she bound a quarto notebook of 214 pages...

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From riches to rags

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Francis King GOING EAST by Matthew d'Ancona Sceptre, £14.99, pp. 406 ISBN 0340828463 T his often impressive but erratic first novel begins with a tragedy. Its young...

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Moments of the supernatural

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Laura Gascoigne Painting Light: Italian Divisionism 1885-1910 Estolick Collection, until 7 September I talian light has inspired more painters than any other. For four...

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Marina's movie

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Mark Steyn Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas selected cinemas M y little boy is five and is into the Hulk, Spider-Man and the X-Men. He's never seen any of the movies, but he...

Master of all he surveys

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Robin Holloway C ulpable (and unwonted) incuriosity to have gone so far through life placing Mozart's four canonical operas — the three da Ponte collaborations and the Magic...

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No expense spared

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Michael Tanner Pagliacci; Rusalka Royal Opera A s I walked down Floral Street on my way to the new production of Pagliacci, I saw a donkey standing by the stage door, and...

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Branagh on show

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Lloyd Evans Edmund Olivier Dido, Queen of Carthage Globe Trenneth Branagh's new show at the IX.Olivier makes for a great night out. Edmund, David Mamet's 1982 play, follows a...

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Noises off

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Michael Vestey A friend who preferred to listen to Radio Two in the mornings and Radio Four at other times of the day mentioned that he'd given up an old favourite on Two, the...

Beyond belief

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Simon Hoggart T he James Hewitt profile on Channel 4, Confessions Of A Cad, was a superb example of train-wreck television. This is when you watch a terrible accident...

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Scenic view

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Alan Judd T o Sweden earlier this month for the launch of the new Renault Scenic. The Scenic I, which set the trend in miniMPVs, has sold over 200,000 in the UK since its 1996...

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Count on me

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Robin Oakley W hen Nasa first sent astronauts into space, the story goes, they discovered that ballpoint pens would not work in zero gravity. So they spent millions over a...

Matters of fact

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Taki St Tropez T ike Rick, when asked why he would ome to Casablanca for its non-existent waters, I presume the hack was misinformed. An item in the Evening Standard's...

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Hello, sailor

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Jeremy Clarke T hate avoiding people I like just because I owe them money. I worry about it. Take my Buddhist friend Chris and his wife Edwina, for example. For the last month...

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Leave her alone

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Petronella Wyatt T have a summer cold. My eyes feel as if they have been rammed into the back of my head by pokers, my chest tells me that a boa constrictor has wrapped itself...

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Triumph and disaster

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MICHAEL HENDERSON It is often said that sport holds a mirror up to society. Thank goodness nobody has told the golfers. In a week of rank behaviour, which has heaped shame upon...

Q. A colleague who sits next to me at work

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has a propensity to break wind violently whenever he feels inclined to do so. Far from being embarrassed by these eructations, as I imagine most people would be, he seems to see...

Q. My mother-in-law is getting on a bit now, and

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is not the woman she Was. On recent visits to her house, she has served my husband and me with only partly defrosted chicken (which we then had discreetly to dispose of without...

Q. I am about to have a novel published but

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am not famous enough to merit a string of profiles in the press. How do you suggest! go about getting some publicity? J.M., London NW3 A. Go to the tabloids purporting to be...