28 MARCH 1998

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The Spectator

Vive la Tony! Al-r1.ER a meeting of European Union ministers in York, M. Dominique Strauss- Kahn, the French finance minister, said on British television that Britain could not...

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The Spectator

The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LL Telephone: 0171-405 1706; Fax 0171-242 0603 TITANIC ERROR P almerston would have sent a gunboat to shell the Hollywood Hills....

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Mr Blair seeks la troisieme voie, but there are only two directions BRUCE ANDERSON T ony Blair's Francophilia does not extend to politics. Last 2 May, a French politician...

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The Spectator

CHARLES WHELAN 0 ne week to go to the budget and the three years of policy discussions in opposi- tion and the thousands of hours of work put in by the Treasury have come...

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The Spectator

EasyJet and designer labels make Marxists of us all MATTHEW PARRIS F rom each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs. That is the injunction in the...

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The Spectator

Dean Godson says destroying MI5's Cold War files pleases the likes of Mr Mandelson, but has some surprising opponents MI5 IS CAUGHT in a crossfire. That is not because of what...

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The Spectator

David Shayler on what has happened to him since he got into the newspapers David Shayler, aged 32, graduated from Dundee University in 1989. He worked as a journalist before...

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The Spectator

Noemie .Emery says that the President is not the only Clinton to have been diminished by scandal Washington, DC WHATEVER becomes of the Clinton presidency — survival, removal,...

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Second opinion

The Spectator

WHO HATH woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath bab- bling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? No prizes for guessing the answer: they that...

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The Spectator

John Casey explains how Netanyahu can destroy secular democracy in Egypt BENJAMIN Netanyahu's suspension of courtesy towards the British Foreign Sec- retary last week was in...


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SUBSCRIBE TODAY- RATES 12 Months 6 Months UK U £93.00 ❑ £47.00 Europe (airmail) U £104.00 U £52.00 USA Airspeed U US$151 ❑ US$76 Rest of) Airmail ❑ £115.00 U £58.00 World...

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Chris Smith, Secretary of State and cultural Dylan is as good a writer as Keats CHRIS Smith thinks that Bob Dylan is as good as Keats and that there is no distinc- tion between...

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The Spectator

Michael Heath

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Mind your language

The Spectator

HOW YOU do suffer, some of you. Mr Jack Speight of Welwyn Garden City has written, in a fine pitch of rage, about a programme that cost him £4 for the splendid performance of...

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The Spectator

. . . is how Australians tend to see Mr Blair, which is why they now tend to prefer Mr Hague, writes David Rennie Sydney AUSTRALIANS, at least those who stop to think about...

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The Spectator

The Aitken case: who is holding the scales of justice tilted? PAUL JOHNSON T hree aspects of the latest phase in the Guardian-Aitken saga require comment. First, now the...

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Viva Negroni

The Spectator

ONE of the more curious entries in this race is the Lira, which has just set a new record: all hail to the 3,000-lire negroni! I shall raise a glass to it in the Bar Giacosa, in...

I'll have the Grill

The Spectator

FOR half a century Fortress Savoy has fought off all corners, from Harold Samuel through to Charles Forte. Now, though, I sense some of the garrison are ready to run up the...


The Spectator

Alice comes to Euro-land, where everybody wins, and she has to dish out the prizes CHRISTOPHER FILDES W hen Alice fell down the rabbit-hole and into Wonderland, she found...

No job for Jonathan

The Spectator

SCARLET faces at the General Electric Company, where Jonathan Aitken's new job has lasted a fortnight. To nobody's surprise but GEC's, he received an approach from Felt Collars...

Hold that Tiger

The Spectator

ANOTHER weird entry is the Punt, better known to its followers as the Celtic Tiger. This one has been fairly whizzing round, tuned up on a diet of Guinness and eggs, and now...

Seasonal adjustment

The Spectator

THIS must be a sign of the times, and all that we have to do now is to work out which way it is pointing. First of all, at Christmas, the Bank of England's shop — until now the...

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Sir: I was disturbed to read my old friend Peter

The Spectator

Oborne, normally so sound on these matters, describe horseracing as a sub- sidised industry 'permanently on the scrounge'. It suits governments for people to think this, but it...

LETTERS Racing certs

The Spectator

Sir: Peter Oborne was right about one thing in his article, 'A racing uncertainty' (21 March) — Cheltenham was once again a marvellous advertisement for British rac- ing. But as...

Tory terrain

The Spectator

Sir: The Conservative party does not have to choose between being reactionary or progressive in constitutional affairs, as your leader (21 March) contends. It simply needs to be...

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Freedom of speech

The Spectator

Sir: Much as I admire Jonathan Mirsky, I must challenge several things that he reported in his piece, 'China, the Times, and me' (21 March). Jonathan continues to assert that he...


The Spectator

Sir: While I wholeheartedly agree with David Wright on the vital importance of discussing the whingeing Pom issue (Let- ters, 14 March), surely Harold Evans's let- ter is proof...

LETTERS Off the rails

The Spectator

Sir: I enjoy and profit from Christopher Fildes's column. Indeed, it alone justifies the cost of the subscription. Just lately, however, the time that I should be spending on...

Air smiles

The Spectator

Sir: Joan collins (Diary, 21 March) does well to comment on the taste and expense of BA design. A further point might be made about their grossly mis-named Cus- tomer Service....


The Spectator

Sir: We are the authors of the book The Liar, about Jonathan Aitken, which your columnist Stephen Glover attacks (Media studies, 21 March). He conducts quite a vendetta. Glover...

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The Spectator

What lack of splendour! Philip Hensher THE SELECTED LEI'lERS OF MARIANNE MOORE edited by Bonnie Costello, Celeste Goodridge and Cristanne Miller Faber, £30, pp. 624 B ook...

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The importance of being parsley

The Spectator

Byron Rogers OTHER PEOPLE'S CHILDREN by Joanna Trollope Bloomsbury, £16.99, pp. 279 B ehind this book is a Good Idea. Noth- ing wrong with that: other novels have been...

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The company she keeps

The Spectator

Anita Brookner THE TRAVELLING HORN PLAYER by Barbara Trapido Hamish Hamilton, £15.99, pp. 245 B arbara Trapido deserves to be cherished for a remark in Juggling, in which a...


The Spectator

LORD BERNERS The Last Eccentric by Mark Amory Mark Amory, literary editor of The Spectator, has written the first biography of Lord Berners, the composer, novelist, painter,...

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Clinical but compassionate

The Spectator

Anne Chisholm ME AND THE FAT MAN by Julie Myerson Fourth Estate, £14.99, pp. 217 I n an English provincial town modelled on Bath a composed 27-year-old called Amy works as a...

The perspective of the losers

The Spectator

Paul Bew CRISIS AND DECLINE by R. B. McDowell The Lilliput Press, Dublin, £16.99, pp. 227 R B. McDowell, who was born in Belfast in 1913, is the last survivor of a remarkable...

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Down there with the best

The Spectator

Nicholas Harman THREE MILES DOWN by James Hamilton-Paterson Cape, £16.99, pp. 296 A fter love and detection, a treasure- hunt is the best kind of narrative to hang a story on;...

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The Singer not the song

The Spectator

Norman Lebrecht ISAAC BASHEVIS SINGER: A LIFE by Janet Hadda OUP, £22.50, pp. 244 I once spent a night and a day on a bare mountain talking to Isaac Bashevis Singer. Having...

The uncaring market

The Spectator

William Rees-Mogg FALSE DAWN: THE DELUSIONS OF GLOBAL CAPITALISM by John Gray Granta, £17.99, pp. 234 J ohn Gray is Professor of European Thought at the London School of Eco-...

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A race to the altar

The Spectator

Kate Grimond WIVES OF THE FISHERMEN by Angela Huth Little, Brown, L15.99, pp. 307 T h e fishermen in question set off in their boats for days or weeks at a time from a little...

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The Spectator

Hollywood versus history Mark Steyn on the `shaping' of historical facts for films E ighty-six years after his death, a young man from Southampton is suddenly the hottest...

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The Spectator

The Art of Holy Russia (Royal Academy, till 14 June) Spiritual grace Martin Gayford T here is a case, of course, for saying that Byzantium didn't fall, with Con- stantinople,...

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The Spectator

Calibre count Robin Holloway E ven as government grants for young composers to undertake post-graduate study are brutally axed, they have in other ways never had it so good....

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Only the best

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Michael Church looks back at 75 years of the Gramophone magazine I have only recently discovered the gramophone. Until lately I supposed it to be nothing but a detestable...


The Spectator

The Oscar effect Mark Steyn F or a kid from Kapuskasing (in north- ern Ontario), James Cameron has the mea- sure of Hollywood. On Monday night, accepting the Oscar for Best...

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The Spectator

We Set Out Early ... Visibility Was Poor (Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Peacock Theatre) Love and loss Giannandrea Poesio T he uncontrollable passion for classifi-...

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The Spectator

The Judas Kiss (Playhouse) Wilde times Sheridan Morley L et England,' wrote Lord Alfred Douglas in 1937, 'bear all responsibility for what she did to Oscar', and it can at...

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The Spectator

Ariadne auf Naxos (Scottish Opera, Glasgow) Saturation treatment Michael Tanner S cottish Opera's production of the 1912 version of Richard Strauss's and Hugo von...


The Spectator

Get a life, Chris James Delingpole T his week I'm going to tell you about a programme even better than Our Mutual Friend. It is a work of such awesome genius that every time I...

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The Spectator

Wolfe wit Michael Vestey T m Wolfe is back, excoriatingly, after a long absence since Bonfire of the Vanities. Although he has a massive new novel com- ing out soon, his audio...

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Not motoring

The Spectator

When will they ever learn? Gavin Stamp I am sorry it has to be the so-called Great Western Railway whose directors are making a financial killing by selling on a company they...

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High life

The Spectator

Something should be done Taki A bout five years ago I was dragged to a low-life Washington DC party by some hacks. They didn't need to do too much dragging. The presence of...

The turf

The Spectator

Epsom acorns Robin Oakley F rom little acorns, mighty oaks can grow. Sketching Derrick Morris, the new boy on the block in Epsom, leading his first lot out at 7.15 on Friday,...

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Country life

The Spectator

Greens and my kitchen Leanda de Lisle I don't suppose you'd be interested in hearing about the nursery kitchenette? The red-head designer from the BBC's Home Front programme...

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The Spectator

Looking ahead Andrew Robson IN the modern game it is rare to let oppo- nents play undisturbed at a low level. Aggressive competing for part scores is, quite simply, winning...


The Spectator

Gift Subscription Offer Give a gift subscription to The Spectator and we will send you a bottle of magnificent Laphroaig 10 year old single Islay malt whisky. Laphroaig is...

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Stock up and drink up Auberon Waugh The Ardeche, I should explain, is in cen- tral France, somewhere west of the Rhone. Jurancon, by contrast, is in south-western France....


The Spectator

cio Yapp Brothers plc, Wine Merchants Mere, Wiltshire BA12 6DY Tel: (01747) 860423 Fax: (01747) 860929 White Price No. Value 71 I, Coteau' de l'Ardeche, Les Terrasses,...

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David Fingleton

The Spectator

THERE is no question that London's most famed chef is Marco Pierre White; he is also the busiest, controlling a large number of London restaurants. But even he can only cook in...

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The Spectator

Pet: a version Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 2026 you were invited to provide a poetic account of keep- ing a pet at an educational establishment. A Trinity man myself, I have...


The Spectator

Coming up Tromps Raymond Keene lER LOSING his world championship match to Alekhine in 1927 the Cuban virtu- oso Jose Capablanca predicted that chess would soon perish of an...

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No. 2029: Madly miscast

The Spectator

Vanity Fair with Anna Neagle as Becky and Laurence Olivier playing Dobbin . . . A Hamlet in which Peter Lorre features as Horatio . . . You are invited to supply an extract...

Solution to 1352: Storytime

The Spectator

H R 3 U1 4 1:24 3 7 OE L 7 0 0'K 9k i t: I10 . L1131 U M u Rl E N D E 1.1,1,YK i 0 I L N OILWMt3 LIIS TER IN T K GI 0 '1 1 1 E G I A1L I'S T E R't Reit'I REONENNI EL...


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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 14 April, with two runners-up prizes of £20 (or, for UK solvers, the...

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The Spectator

Love bites Simon Barnes AT the weekend, for a supplement of a few pounds, second-class ticket-holders can travel in the second first-class coach on InterCity trains (or...


The Spectator

Dear Mary.. . Q. My wife and I live on the third floor of a small block of flats. On the first floor lives a German bachelor who has recently arrived in Singapore and has very...