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Notwithstanding the presence of half a million American troops and

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after three years of full-scale war waged with all the most sophisticated conventional weapons in the American armoury North Vietnamese guer- rillas were able this week to mount...

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The Prime Minister

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The campaign, both in and out of parliament, to defend the Prime Minister against . press criticism has been conducted over the past ten days with an extravagance of phrase that...

- A matter of principle -

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The so-called Industrial Expansion Bill has at last begun its progress through Parliament. So far it cannot be said to have received its due share of attention—although it is...

Portrait of the week

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Guerrilla attacks against towns and cities all over South Vietnam were launched by the Vietcong: on Tuesday they occupied part of the American em- bassy in Saigon, and there was...

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Hippie BA

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CHRISTOPHER HOLLIS We need such a lot Of the pill and the pot, But who'll pay the bill For the pot and the pill? The country is bust But the pill is a 'must.' They can find...

The war on Mr Jones's teeth

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POLITICAL COMMENTARY AUBERON WAUGH The Government's vicious vilification and denigration of political correspondents may really have passed all the bounds of public decency,...

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Who's backing the colonels?

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GREECE • HELEN VLACHOS Mrs Helen V lachos is the proprietor and distinguished political columnist of the two leading Greek conservative daily newspapers Kathimerini and...

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Out of court

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GERALD BROOKE TIBOR SZAMUELY Mr Wilson has returned, as usual, empty- handed from his regular visit to Moscow. This was only to be expected: it is impossible to think of a...

Aid, not trade

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UNCTAD JAY DUBASIII Delhi—The Delhi session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Develop- ment (UNCTAD) is about neither trade nor development. It is about politics....

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Spyboat diplomacy

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PUEBLO AFFAIR LAURENCE MARTIN Laurence Martin is Professor of International Relations at the University College of Wales and Defence Correspondent of the SPECTATOR. The...

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J. W. M. THOMPSON Robin Hood, Dick Turpin, Macheath, Charles Wilson: many ages have produced folk heroes of one sort or another from the underworld. The recaptured train robber...

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This blessed plot

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THE PRESS GEORGE HUTCHINSON Libel lawyer or no libel lawyer, it may be that Lord Gardiner is too innocent for the office of Lord Chancellor, which calls, I should have thought,...

On the dole

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PERSONAL COLUMN ARTHUR BARTON The other day my bus stopped opposite a large disused church. Rain was falling and the little crowd of men progressing towards the doors shuffled...

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A hundred years ago From the 'Spectator', 1 February 1868—Under

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Two Flags. By Ouida. Three vols. (Chapman and Hall.)—This story is sometimes interesting, and often exciting; but it is simply absurd and im- possible. The rose-pink atmosphere...

From selection to selectivity?

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EDUCATION STUART MACLURE This is the first of a new series of educational articles which will appear regularly in the • SPECTATOR. Stuart Maclure is the editor of the - weekly...

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A letter to Britannia

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STRIX Dear Madam, . You owe this letter to a new penny, which was included in the change I received from a subor- dinate of the Postmaster-General. There is a kind of warm...

Bonj our, Peanuts

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TABLE TALK • DENIS BROGAN Washington—I left the dreaming spires of Princeton (so redolent of Zuleika Dobson) for New York with regret. I was 'casing the joint,' looking at a...

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A second phoenix BOOKS

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JOHN BAYLEY Lawrence was a man of deep humour, the kind of humour which is not, like 'style,' an inverted commas quality, capitalised by the writer and cherished by his...

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Feet of Clay SIMON RAVEN

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Letters to Macmillan edited by Simon Nowell- Smith (Macmillan 55s) 185- Dear old Mac : Now that Tom Brown is selling like hot potatoes, what about a whole series? Tom Brown at...

No and yes

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MARTIN SEYMOUR-SMITH The Penguin Book of Satirical Verse intro- duced and edited by Edward Lucie-Smith (Penguin 6s) The Penguin Book of English Romantic Verse edited with an...

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Sage of State

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D. C. WATT Memoirs 1925-1950 George F. Kennan (Hutchinson 65s) The lot of an American career diplomat ia not an easy one; and Mr Kennan's has been no easier than the norm for...

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The name game

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WES MAGEE We talked casually about P. G. Wodehouse saying that Jeeves, like Winter,, had come round Again, and then played a ploy Where everyone had to list Beckett's plays in...

Iron mouse

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ANGUS MAUDE It is hard not to feel that Report from Iron Mountain, a slightly self-conscious little tour de force which has created quite a stir in. America, has to some extent...

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Shorter notices

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The Penny Histories Victor E. Neuburg (out. The Juvenile Library 30s). 'A very small book/ At a very small charge/To learn them to read/ Before they grow large.' Thus the front...


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Bodies politic MATTHEW COADY Send Him Victorious Douglas Hurd and Andrew Osmond (Collins 25s) The Dust and the Heat Michael Gilbert (Hodder and Stoughton 21s) Cargo of Eagles...

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POLITICS ANTHONY LIVESEY Miss Jennie Lee having thought better of re- signing (in part, no doubt, after seeing the mortifying suggestion in The Times that the event 'would be a...

Buster festa ARTS

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PENELOPE HOUSTON The film is a Fatty Arbuckle two-reeler called The Butcher Boy; the year, 1917. Arbuckle, capering stoutly about behind his shop-counter, is suddenly...

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Stylish Nile

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OPERA EDWARD BOYLE The new production of Aida at Covent Garden is notable, first of all, for the very fine sets by Nicholas Georgiadis which are lovely to look at, rich,...

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Who commands the heights? MONEY

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NICHOLAS DAVENPORT The final veriion of the controversial Industrial Expansion Bill, which has now had its first reading in the Commons, may sound as dull as an archbishop's...


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CHRISTOPHER FILDES Wherever you look, great companies are rush- ing towards one another like mating elephants: the urge to merge has become a passion. The heart, of course, has...

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The second computer revolution

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BUSINESS VIEWPOINT CHARLES ROSS Charles Ross is a director of International Data Highways, and managing director of ItTrmico. Much has been said and written recently about...

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Wall St. bubble

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FINANCE USA WILLIAM JANEWAY Wall Street is in trouble. It is a rule of thumb that uncertainty spells trouble for any market, and Wall Street has certainly had a surfeit of...

The heavyweights

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PORTFOLIO JOHN BULL In the past week there have been two develop- ments which affect my portfolio. First, John Brown : the half-yearly report published last Friday was mostly...

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Market report

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CUSTOS Uncertainty, pessimism, fear of a swingeing budget and a disposition to take the short view —these City attitudes at first sight seem bard to equate with a stock market...

Anatomy of a resignation

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LETTERS From Anthony Judge, D. R. Myddelton, Alan Smith, C. Armstrong, G. L. Bayliss, Sir Thomas Scrivenor, Lionel H. Grouse, David Yockney, J. C. Maxwell, the Rev Fred Adams....


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Sir: Mrs Yvonne Brock (Letters, 26 January) does not help the cause of individual freedom by com- paring 'the left' with 'the right.' Of course govern- ment-imposed censorship...

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Poetry for you

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Sir: When your publication came, Blue headline caught my eye. John Wells with 'Poetry for you'! I gave a gladsome cry. For long I'd hoped to find a man Who really could expound...

Touj ours le lampiste

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Sir : I can only assume that Sir Denis Brogan makes his deliberate mistakes for the fun of seeing which of his many admirers catches him out. Perhaps I might be allowed a turn?...

Sir: Mrs Yvonne Brock (Letters, 26 January) supports Mr Heifer's

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Bill to prohibit live hare coursing. Without wishing to comment on the sub- ject of hare coursing itself, I note with interest that Mr Helfer was one of the MPS who voted for...

be petomane

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Sir: Mr Harold Falconer strikes a long overdue blow against the evils of our permissive society (Letters, 26 January). He also reminds us that even in these supposedly...

Fish 'n' chips

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Sir: It appears from Sir Denis Brogan's 'Table Talk,' in your issue of 26 January, that not even a Scot who has been thoroughly corrupted by an English education has the...

Body of knowledge

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Sir: I am glad Dr Frew (Letters, 26 January) agrees with me on the question of compulsory teaching, and congratulate him on his high per- sonal standards in his patients'...

Amorous prawn

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Sir: I confess I still do not see why Arnold should not have meant what he quite clearly said. Mr Williams's only objection (Letters, 26 January) seems to be to calling an age...

The great exchange fraud

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Sir: Mr Wilson, the Great Train Robber, who has now been rearrested in Canada, arrived here three years ago. He immediately purchased valu- able real estate and built a...

No. 486: Octet

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COMPETITION Competitors are invited to compose an eight. line poem or stanza of a poem on any one of the subjects given below, using four of the fol- lowing five pairs of words...

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Boos and catcalls

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AFTERTHOUGHT JOHN WELLS Mr Kenneth Onan, the distinguished dramatic critic and Theaterdirigent, for many years the enfant horrible of English Letters, is sometimes outspoken,...

No. 484: The winners

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Competitors were asked to compose an octet on one of the following subjects : a politician's nightmare, a Casanova's apology or the lyrics for a pop record by the 'Backing...

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Across 1 'Nonsense!' say the holders of the documents (6) 4 A loud and articulate kind of society (7) 10 Minus by inference? (7) 11 Psephologist's mathematical problem concerns...

Chess no. 372

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PHILIDOR C. Mansfield (1st prize, Observer, 1965). White to play and mate in two moves; solution next week. Solution to no. 371 (Rice): R- R 1, no threat. I P -Kt 8 = Q; 2 Q -...