29 JANUARY 2000

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The big fight P lans to give offices in the Palace of Westminster to the Sinn Fein MPs Mr Gerry Adams and Mr Martin McGuinness were delayed by the unwillingness of the Irish...

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For President, George W. if he can control the religious right BRUCE ANDERSON ew Hampshire is a good place to have a car crash. Traffic cops, car-hire firms, the other driver:...

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PETRONELLA WYATT W hat is it that you're selling?' asked the man from the trade magazine. 'Choco- late,' I answered. 'What kind?"Urn, erotic chocolate.' Chaotic chocolate?' No,'...

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Finding something of Jesus in Addis Ababa MATTHEW PARRIS M ost of us who do not believe in a Divinity would call ourselves moral rela- tivists. We doubt whether there is any...

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You can't keep a bad man down: Mark Steyn predicts another triumph for the Comeback Kid — in the shape of a victory for his second banana in the presidential elections New...

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Geoffrey Wheatcroft on the frivolous Catholicism and flawed prose of Graham Greene AE 1ER a writer dies, his work notoriously tends to slump on the literary Footsie or...

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Robbie Millen on the contenders for the leadership of Britain's whingeing farmers SELLAR and Yeatman commended the peasant, or rather pheasant, revolts of What Tyler and Straw...

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Mind your language

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A charmingly honest letter comes from Mr Clive Boddington of Haslemere about due to and owing to. 'I remember as a young man,' he writes, 'being taken to task, on grammatical...

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Rachel Johnson uncovers a British plot to schmooze the news from Europe Brussels IT wasn't so very long ago when a story from Brussels meant a certain sort of thing: curly...

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Andrew Roberts unveils the crowd- pleasing attractions of the 'forces of conservatism' NOW is the time for critics of the Dome to put up or shut up. The Prime Minister has...

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Sion Simon defends workplace counselling. It's no worse than other forms of corporate quackeiy Q. HOW many workplace psychologists does it take to change a light bulb? A....

Banned wagon

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A weekly survey of the things our rulers want to prohibit NO government is likely to risk a back- lash — not to mention a catastrophic col- lapse of excise revenue — by banning...

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Michael Heath

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Philip Delves Broughton discovers that even the General's enemies are prepared to forgive him Santiago THEY are looking for bodies again in Pis- agua this weekend. This...

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Do we need a legal philosophy? If so, what should it be? PAUL JOHNSON W hat should the law be about? Even lawyers seldom ask this question, and it ought to be asked from time...

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Missing Mitford

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From Mr Anthony Mitford Sir: Peregrine Worsthorne is wrong in say- ing that Diana Mitford was the most spirit- ed of all the five fabulous sisters (As I was saying, 8 January)....

LETTERS I shall survive

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From Mr Arnold Wesker Sir: Philip Hensher reviewing Michael Darlow's biography of Terence Rattigan (Books, 8 January) quotes from it a pas- sage suggesting I was rude to...

From Lady Mosley Sir: I am glad that Peregrine Worsthorne

The Spectator

no longer identifies me with Lady Macbeth. I cannot hear myself muttering to Sir Oswald, 'Infirm of purpose! Give me the daggers.' But I should be interested to know whom he...

Gays at arms

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From Air Chief Marshal Sir Michael Armitage (Rtd) Sir: The otherwise splendid article by Bruce Anderson (Politics, 15 January) is simply too late, at least as far as homosexuals...

From Mr R.WJ. Walker Sir: As commentators never tire of

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pointing out, no Cabinet politicians have seen service in the armed forces — but nor have many journalists, and it shows. Much dewy-eyed sentimentality has been allowed to pass...

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Exemplary name

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From Mr Mark B. Lemmon Sir: In his article (Arts, 8 January) on Julio Medem's film, Lovers of the Arctic Circle, Mark Steyn omitted to mention an obvious reason for the...

Declaration of independence

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From Mr Simon ICelner Sir: My old friend Stephen Glover's thoughtful piece about the Independent (22 January) contained a number of assertions that I cannot leave unchallenged....

Balkan war of words

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From Mr Marko Gasic Sir: Walking into my local newsagent's, I noticed a commotion in a corner. Some- thing was cooking inside The Spectator. What an altercation! Poor old John...

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Whitehall's mills grind slowly, so Geoffrey will just have to wait for them CHRISTOPHER FILDES G eoffrey Robinson says that he wel- comes the Department of Trade and Indus-...

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Chasing the tiger Robert Hardman on the elusive trail of the greatest cat of them all FORGET lions, elephants, crocodiles or even rhino. Any fool with a khaki hat and a camera...

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Last island of enlightenment Ed Docx 'IT is not widely known — except, perhaps, by our friend Roy Jenkins — that Green- land is the most civilised country in the world.' Thus...

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Nevis on a Sunday Alice Thomson WHEN I heard that Tony Blair was contem- plating a short break in Nevis with Cherie after Christmas, I was appalled. This tiny former...

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More than just dodos Petronella Wyatt I TEND not to like tropical islands. I speak from the standpoint of someone who, until last week, had been to . . . absolutely none,...

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Take me to the kasbah Tessa Codrington ERROL FLYNN, Barbara Hutton, Win- ston Churchill and serried louche intellec- tuals first fell for Morocco over half a century ago. Now...

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I should never have gone Barbara Toner THERE are holidays you shouldn't have had. I should never• have gone to Cuba. Before I went to Cuba I was a kindly, left- leaning...

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No sex, please. . . R.J. Barlow ONE would think that for someone who wanted a Thai massage, a Buddhist temple in Bangkok might provide the genuine, non-tpuristy article. And...

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New Zealand

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My leap of faith Simon Reid SOME of you may have been too busy or distracted to clock this, but in Queens- town, New Zealand, official home of Extreme Sports, the Big 2000 was...

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A hard act to follow Philip Hensher GOETHE: THE POET AND THE AGE, VOLUME II, REVOLUTION AND RENUNCIATION, 1790-1803 by Nicholas Boyle OUP, 130, pp. 949 V on hier und heute...

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Taken for a ride

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Frank Egerton UNDER THE SKIN by Michel Faber Canongate, £10, pp. 304 T here were several contradictory things going on in Michel Faber's prize-winning short-story collection,...

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Getting away with murder

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Norman Stone SADDAM HUSSEIN: THE POLITICS OF REVENGE by Said K. Aburish Bloomsbury, £20, pp. 406 T he most disastrous decision of the sec- ond half of the 20th century seems,...

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Swimming against the tide

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Anthony O'Hear AGAINST THE IDOLS OF THE AGE by David Stove, edited by Roger Kimball EDS, £29.95, pp. 347, tel 02072400856 or once the title is justified. Usually those who...


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Zenga Longmore WHITE TEETH by Zadie Smith Hamish Hamilton, £12.99, pp. 480 Z adie Smith is a very impressive woman. She is divinely pretty, 24 years old, has a double first in...

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The unentitled professor

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Rupert Christiansen THERE ARE KERMODIANS: A LIBER AMICORUM FOR FRANK KERMODE Evefryman, £12.99, pp. 218 h is attractive little book is a collection of personal tributes to a...

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To be or not to be British: that is the

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question Allan Massie AFTER BRITAIN by Tom Nairn Granta, £15.99, pp. 324 W ay back in 1977 Tom Nairn pub- lished a book entitled The Break-up of Britain. Britain is still with...

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Not by GDP alone

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Samuel Brittan DEVELOPMENT AS FREEDOM by Amartya Sen OUP, 117.99, pp. 360 A nartya Sen is an Indian economist who has achieved the double distinction of becoming Master of...

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Talking into the sunset

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Anne Chisholm GREENE ON CAPRI: A MEMOIR by Shirley Hazzard Virago, £12.99, pp. 160 G raham Greene has so far contrived to elude the best, and worst, efforts of his biographers....

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Keeping a finger in the pie

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M. R. D. Foot ALLEN DULLES by James Srodes Regnery, $34.95, pp. 624 T his full and fascinating biography deals with one of the century's formative figures, less in the public...

Stately home blues

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Olivia Glazebrook THE BIG HOUSE by Helena McEwen Bloomsbury, £12.99, pp. 186 C onsidering that the experience of some sort of childhood is common to every writer on the planet,...

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Building for the glory of God and man

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Christopher Montgomery FRANCIS POLLEN by Alan Powers published by Robert Dugdale, 26 Norham Gardens, Oxford 0X2 6SF, .£20 (including p+p in UK), pp. 123, cheques payable to...

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Cause for celebration Michael Tanner on a bracing weekend celebrating the work of Kurt Weill erlin to Broadway: The Music of Kurt Weill made a marvellously bracing weekend at...

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Spend, spend spend

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Felicity Owen looks at whether the Lottery millions are going to the right places C ivilisation if not Christendom has made great strides in England since the first millennium...

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Exhibitions 1

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Message to the Mayon Don't Sterilise Our City! (Museum of London, till 20 February) London: discuss Alan Powers M useums don't usually express politi- cal opinions, still...

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Exhibitions 2

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The Art of Invention: Leonardo and Renaissance Engineers (Science Museum, till 24 April) Those magnificent men Martin Gayford L ast Saturday, we thought we'd go to see the...

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Well-kept secret Robin Holloway F rom Eye-failure and the abject Thames wall-of-fire to the cop-out of Sir John Tavener's new-age oratorio, the change of epoch underwhelmed....

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Mysterious star Mark Steyn remembers the actress Hedy Lemarr, who died last week T he day after she died, the newspapers were pretty much in agreement: Hedy Lamarr couldn't...

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Boyle's legacy Michael Vestey F eedback, the listeners' complaints pro- gramme on Radio Four (Friday), has shown some spirit since it was revamped and extended to 30 minutes....


The Spectator

Should he go? James Delingpole I n this week's Frazier (Channel 4, Friday) Niles landed a job as critic for a posh mag- azine. `Aha,' I thought, when I read this in the Radio...

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The turf

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Royal rides Robin Oakley I n Britain racing genuinely has been the sport of kings. Queens, too, have been pretty keen. Nanny Marion Crawford's first encounter with the present...

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High life

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Fighting talk Taki 'm here attending a karate camp with all my old students, most of whom are now called `sensei', or teacher, a term I've always forbidden my juniors to...

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No life

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Changing places Toby Young New York 've been spending the past week franti- cally - trying to put my affairs in order before I move back to London. The whole business is...

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Country life

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Bring back the coffee house Leanda de Lisle Y esterday I threw away two dustbin bags full of old papers and glued four years' worth of holiday snaps into a photo- graph album....


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The full monty Andrew Robson IT IS rarely easy to bid for all 13 tricks — a grand slam. And my advice to most play- ers is not to bother. This was the same advice given to me...

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Under- Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 2120 you were invited to list New Year resolutions which you have already broken, explaining, with ingenuity and transparent sophistry, why...

RdbeCi The Ultimate Islay Malt.

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Rcibeg www.ardbes.com CHESS Wijk aan Zee Raymond Keene IT is extraordinary the extent to which Holland supports chess. Many of the greatest games in the history of chess...

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A first prize of £30 and a bottle of Graham's award-winning, Late- Bottled Vintage Port for the first correct solution opened on 14 February, with two runners-up prizes of £20...

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PERUVIAN cuisine is without doubt the most underrated in the world. Auguste Escoffier ranked it third behind only French and Chinese. It is difficult to match for taste,...

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Cricket has lost its Pope Simon Barnes I SEEM to have spent an awful lot of my Journalistic life writing in direct contradic- tion to the great tradition established and...


The Spectator

Dear Mary. . . Q. Until recently I was a freelance classical musician, but now I am fortunate to have found full-time permanent employment in an opera orchestra. On descending...