2 APRIL 2005

Page 3

PORTRAIT OF THE WEEK M rHoward Flight who, many were surprised

The Spectator

to learn, was deputy chairman of the Conservative party, had the whip withdrawn and was told by Mr Michael Howard, the Conservative leader, that he could not stand for...

Page 4

Unfair but right

The Spectator

T othe minds of many reasonable people the punishment meted out to Howard Flight, MP for Arundel and the South Downs, has been of unwarranted severity. No one — not even the...

Page 5

M y husband and I have a week’s holiday, and we

The Spectator

have told everyone who asks that we are going to Marrakesh. We haven’t bothered booking, of course, because we are disorganised and thus choose to believe the oft-repeated lie...

Page 6

Mr Flight is a throwback to the age of representative democracy

The Spectator

J im Callaghan, who died last Saturday, was the last British prime minister in the commonly accepted sense of the word. After him several factors — the degradation of the...

Page 7

T he attempt by the Pope to pronounce his Easter blessing

The Spectator

on Sunday and his failure in that attempt were so moving. On the day which, of all days, affirms life, John Paul II must particularly have longed to speak. As he struggled to do...

Page 8

Honi soit qui mal y pense

The Spectator

Simon Heffer condemns the spiteful attacks on Mrs Camilla Parker Bowles and says that she will make a perfect Queen for the future King Charles O urs would be a grim age if we...

Page 10

The good news about terrorism

The Spectator

The defence establishment has convinced us to live in fear, says Paul Robinson , but in fact there are fewer wars and fewer terrorists than ever before ‘W e are facing the...

Page 11

Al-Qa’eda is a conspiracy of alienated middle-class kids

The Spectator

When Sajid Badat, formerly of Gloucester, pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to conspiring to blow up an aeroplane with a crude shoe-bomb device (before bottling it), there was an...

Page 12

A customer on the line

The Spectator

Jane Kelly watched a drunk fall in the path of a Tube train, apparently in a half-hearted attempt at suicide. Everybody got a bit hysterical I t was a good Saturday in London. I...

Page 13

Russia in the dock

The Spectator

Rachel Polonsky says Mikhail Borisovich Khodorkovsky is a prisoner of conscience, and his show trial stands as an indictment of the country’s criminal justice system Moscow I...

Page 15

Mind your language

The Spectator

‘Nigel Planer’s beaming scoutmaster of a Wilberforce becomes absurdly jejeune when he talks of Heaven,’ wrote Benedict Nightingale in the Times last September, reviewing Darwin...

The iniquities of fair trade

The Spectator

Leo McKinstry says that the campaign against free trade is heaping misery on the Third World F ree trade used to be seen as a progressive, liberalising force. By spreading...

Page 17

Public execution

The Spectator

Mark Steyn on the bitter divisions created in American society by the case of Terri Schiavo New Hampshire D o you remember a fellow called Robert Wendland? No reason why you...

Page 18

Ancient & modern

The Spectator

A Lithuanian girl arrived in England looking for work and was promptly sold for £4,000 to an Albanian. He raped her and put her in a brothel. She escaped, was recaptured, sent...

Page 20

Persecution of Christians

The Spectator

From Dr Michael Pravica Sir: Regarding Anthony Browne’s ‘Church of martyrs’ (26 March): one of the foremost examples of Christian persecution which was not mentioned in his...

Abortion risks

The Spectator

From Josephine Quintavalle Sir: I too share Stuart Reid’s absolute position against all abortion (‘Abortion humbug’, 26 March). I am not, however, happy with his dismissal of...

Where’s my copy?

The Spectator

From Eric Brown Sir: I note with interest the minister for Europe’s suggestion (Letters, 26 March) that The Spectator should produce ‘a 28page, tabloid-style version of the...

Redesdale recanted

The Spectator

From Philip Hensher Sir: What Paul Levy originally said about Lord Redesdale, in his explanatory notes to Lytton Strachey’s letters, was: ‘He was seriously unhinged and, when a...

Page 21

On being Jewish

The Spectator

From Miriam M. Reik Sir: I immediately recognise the experience and background of Miriam Gross because it is almost exactly the same as mine (‘What it means to be Jewish’, 26...

Catholic support for Mosley

The Spectator

From Rodney Atkinson Sir: Congratulations to Charles Moore for defending Conservative candidate Adrian Hilton against the obnoxious attack from the Catholic Herald and the...

No asylum crisis

The Spectator

From Anne Dawson-Shepherd Sir: The piece by Rod Liddle contains the erroneous use of the terms ‘illegal’ and ‘bogus’ for asylum-seekers (‘The seeds of hate’, 19 March)....

Smacks of confusion

The Spectator

From Claus von Bulow Sir: In his review of Maria Full of Grace (Arts, 26 March) Mark Steyn mentions Colombia and its capital Bogota six times and yet he makes the mistake of...

A mean obit

The Spectator

From Damian Thompson Sir: Terence Monaghan (Letters, 26 March) is cross that I accused the left-wing Catholic magazine the Tablet of printing a sour article marking the death...

Local knowledge

The Spectator

From Alasdair Finlayson Sir: To create a warm, local atmosphere in telesales from far-flung parts (Paul Johnson, And another thing, 26 March), operatives are schooled in UK...

From Samuel Brittan

The Spectator

Sir: It is a sound convention that authors do not take issue with reviewers. But part of the same convention is that reviewers refrain from inaccurate or misleading accounts of...

Page 22

Ce que je redis au peuple français votez Non, votez souvent, encore

The Spectator

T he trouble with a referendum, as Kenneth Clarke noted, is that people do not always answer the question you ask them. You want to know if they favour a bimetallistic approach...

Page 23

Why the Church of England is our best defence against religious enthusiasm

The Spectator

I t couldn’t happen here, they say. We are unlike the Americans. The English are viscerally sceptical of religious enthusiasm — always have been. Waves of evangelism in our...

Page 24

Going down to Kew in daffodil time

The Spectator

W hen spring finally reached London after those Arctic weeks with the bitter wind from the east, I hurried out to Kew to see what was happening to Nature. And there it all was:...

Page 25

Swimming in the rain

The Spectator

Iain Murray on tropical storms in the Caribbean F or all I know, there may be those who go to the Caribbean to broaden their minds, to absorb the local culture and to stretch...

Page 26

Carpet bagging

The Spectator

Lucy Vickery S ara could see it in her mind’s eye: the carpet of her dreams understated, restrained even, with just a hint of a wild, bohemian past. Ibrahim, so he told us, was...

Page 27

One for the road

The Spectator

Neil Clark F or Apsley Cherry-Garrard, the trek to the South Pole was ‘the worst journey in the world’. If Captain Scott’s associate had ever travelled on a Eurolines coach...

Page 29

A tale of two horses

The Spectator

Matthew Reid B etween the tawny wilds of Exmoor Forest and the grey band of the Bristol Channel sits the town of Minehead in Somerset. It’s not a pretty town, and when I...

Page 30

An ancient Kulturkampf

The Spectator

John Laughland A mong the greatest cultural glories of East-central Europe are the region’s German cities. From Tallinn (‘Reval’ in German) on the Baltic to Brasov...

Page 32

Fumbling with the raw materials

The Spectator

M ost great artists begin as mimics. They do not, as Clara Schumann claimed Brahms did, come into the world ‘ready-made’. Manet prided himself on painting ‘straight from...

Page 33

The unease of the distant East

The Spectator

D. J. Taylor T HE I NDIA H OUSE by William Palmer Cape, £16.99, pp. 249, ISBN 0224072978 ✆ £14.99 (plus £2.25 p&p) 0870 800 4848 D efying the geographical promise of its title,...

Page 34

Defending the Marxist citadel

The Spectator

Anne Applebaum T HE S OVIET C ENTURY by Moshe Lewin Verso, £25, pp. 416, ISBN 1844670163 I n the last several years, Englishspeaking readers have been treated to a plethora of...

Page 35

Where different means wrong

The Spectator

Harriet Sergeant T HE B LUE -E YED S ALARYMAN by Niall Murtagh Profile, £16.99, pp. 216, ISBN 1861977247 ✆ £14.99 (plus £2.25 p&p) 0870 800 4848 I was sitting in a Japanese...

Page 36

Emergency exits and entrances

The Spectator

Nicholas Harman C HILDREN OF W AR by Susan Goodman John Murray, £20, pp. 330, ISBN 0719561221 ✆ £18 (plus £2.25 p&p) 0870 800 4848 O UT OF H ARM ’ S WAY by Jessica Mann...

White-water trip towards wisdom

The Spectator

Toby Lichtig RAPIDS by Tim Parks Secker, £12.99, pp. 246, ISBN 0436205599 ✆ £11.99 (plus £2.25 p&p) 0870 800 4848 I n his 12th novel, Tim Parks revisits a subject that has been...

Page 37

England’s greatest export

The Spectator

Douglas Johnson S HAKESPEARE G OES TO P ARIS : H OW THE B ARD C ONQUERED FRANCE by John Pemble Hambleden & London, £19.99, pp. 240, ISBN 1852854529 S hakespeare was the great...

Page 38

The inside story

The Spectator

John Martin Robinson E ARLY G EORGIAN I NTERIORS by John Cornforth Yale, £60, pp. 400, ISBN 0300103301 T his posthumous book is the summation of a lifetime’s research into...

Tom Tiddler’s ground

The Spectator

James Buchan T HE M IDDLE E AST IN I NTERNATIONAL R ELATIONS by Fred Halliday CUP, £16.99, pp. 392, ISBN 0521597412 F or many people in the West, the Middle East is a source of...

Page 40

Small-town screwballs and surprises

The Spectator

Stephen Abell P IECES FOR THE L EFT H AND by J. Robert Lennon Granta, £10, pp. 213 I n a 1925 essay, Freud unearthed an important linguistic truth about the concept of the...

A selection of recent paperbacks

The Spectator

Fiction: The Master by Colm Tóibín (Picador, £7.99) The Flight of the Falcon by Daphne du Maurier (Virago, £7.99) The Dream by Emile Zola, translated by Michael Glencross,...

Page 41

Designed for living

The Spectator

Andrew Lambirth finds plenty to enjoy at the V&A’s Arts and Crafts show, despite the gloom I nternational Arts and Crafts is the third of the V&A’s major 19th/20th century...

Page 42

Parallel dreams

The Spectator

Peter Phillips I often find myself day-dreaming about how the Tallis Scholars might resemble other and more glamorous artistic outfits. As we uncurl on to the stage, I imagine...

Page 44

Mocking Wagner

The Spectator

Michael Tanner Parsifal Staatsoper unter den Linden, Berlin Ti he latest vogue in Wagner production n Germany is to have the works directed by people who have had little or...

Grateful to the Dead

The Spectator

Charles Spencer ‘ Y ou’re not going to write about them, are you?’ said my wife contemptu ously, when I announced that I was going to devote this month’s column to the Grateful...

Page 45

Tepid terror

The Spectator

Mark Steyn The Ring Two 15, selected cinemas I hate to dismiss entire genres, but I’m not sure I get the whole Americanisation-ofJapanese-horror-movies thing. In the Japanese...

Page 47

Seduced by Hedda

The Spectator

Lloyd Evans Hedda Gabler Almeida Medeamaterial (etc.) Theatro Technis The Girl with Red Hair Hampstead T o make boredom exciting is one of the riskiest theatrical effects. The...

Page 48

Kill off the oldies

The Spectator

Patrick Carnegy Sir Thomas More; A New Way to Please You Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon T he RSC celebrates the 400th anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot with four...

Page 49

Spirit of Ashton

The Spectator

Giannandrea Poesio Royal Ballet Triple Bill Royal Opera House E nigma Variations is, arguably, one of Frederick Ashton’s most complex works. Created in 1968, the ballet...

Transatlantic relations

The Spectator

Michael Vestey W hen I spotted that the conservative American writer and wit P.J. O’Rourke was giving two 20-minute talks on Radio Four, the first on Easter Sunday, I rubbed my...

Page 50

Perfect set-up

The Spectator

Simon Hoggart T wo very popular drama series came back this week. Hustle (BBC1, Tuesday) is entirely formulaic, and none the worse for that. In each episode the villains are...

Page 51

Feminine wiles

The Spectator

Robin Oakley A s departure hour for a reception or a dinner party approaches, the Oakley residence comes to resemble the opening scene of Four Weddings and a Funeral . Years of...

Untold suffering

The Spectator

Taki N emmersdorf is a village in East Prussia that was overrun by the Soviets in the autumn of 1944. After seizing the village, the Russkies raped all the women, regardless of...

Page 53

Heaving with hooligans

The Spectator

Jeremy Clarke T o a book launch on Tuesday, hoping and praying there would be a fight. ‘O Lord!’ I prayed, ‘please let it all kick off big style.’ The book was Top Boys by Cass...

Page 54

Don’t Worrie Be Happy

The Spectator

Aidan Hartley Swat, Pakistan T he Swat valley’s apple orchards are in blossom even as the snow still lies thick on the mountains. It’s been the harshest winter in memory. I...

Page 55

I t is half-term and so our pre-teen son must be

The Spectator

kept amused because, on the whole, boys of this age are like Labradors: unless you give them some kind of run every day they will eat the furniture. In fact, come to think of...

Page 59

Dream on!

The Spectator

FRANK KEATING U ntil the 1980s, England vs Northern Ireland was a calendar annual. Then the ‘Home’ championship was brutally abandoned. So to those of a certain generation last...

Q. As a single person I invite many people over

The Spectator

for dinner. Invariably the numbers are not equal, but I go to immense pains to get a mixture of guests who will find each other interesting, and also try to cook something...

Q. I enjoyed your suggestion of special edition stamps as

The Spectator

presents to commemorate the second marriages of older people. Sadly these would be superfluous for the royal wedding I am about to attend. I have been told there is no need to...