5 MAY 2007

Page 5

A legacy for us all

The Spectator

I t is bleakly symmetrical that Tony Blair’s tenth anniversary as Prime Minister should have fallen in the same week as the Scottish, Welsh and local elections. But it was no...

Page 9

T he telephone rang at 7.45 a.m. It was a journalist

The Spectator

I know. She sounded tense. ‘Gyles,’ she said, ‘do you want to come out?’ ‘It’s a bit early, isn’t it, darling?’ I replied. ‘I mean, “come out”,’ she said...

Page 10

MI5 is much enhanced since Crevice: but it still can’t make guarantees

The Spectator

F or almost two years, Westminster has been abuzz with what many MPs believed to be an explosive secret. The ringleader of the 7 July London bombings, Mohammed Sidique Khan, was...

Page 13


The Spectator

MONDAY Jed in terrible mood. He’s been like it since last Wednesday when his bicycle broke down on the way to Stamford Bridge. I must say, I can’t quite work out how a...

Page 14

Opportunity has stopped knocking: who will be its new champion?

The Spectator

Anne McElvoy says that the decline of social mobility is a modern scandal and should be the great battleground of post-Blair politics. The answer used to be grammar schools: now...

Page 16

‘Now the terrorists have felt the extent of our reach’

The Spectator

Dean Godson talks to Peter Clarke, the Met’s head of counterterrorism, about the Crevice trial, and concludes that the failures it exposed have deeper roots than alleged MI5...

Page 18

How I bought a slum for half a million

The Spectator

Lloyd Evans is aghast at his decision, in less than six minutes, to buy a tiny home that he and his wife admit is ugly and overpriced I t was pretty barmy ten years ago but now...

Page 20

Cameron is taking on Brown — in Rwanda

The Spectator

Clemency Burton-Hill says that the Chancellor led the way in international development but that the Tories are fighting back with a plan to send MPs into poverty-stricken Africa...

Page 22

Mind your language

The Spectator

The curious case of the cup has been gripping traditionally minded Catholics for a few years now. I mention the question because a secret text of the new translation of the Mass...

America’s problem is the way it treats its friends

The Spectator

Ross Clark says that new powers taken over British citizens by the US tax authorities are reminiscent of the NatWest Three scandal. Does Uncle Sam want to drive us into...

Page 23

A Parisian interlude in which I bump into Ségo and Delors

The Spectator

Patrick Marnham Paris, 1 May B etween two rounds of a presidential election, the city seems untypically calm. But from my observatory, two floors above the campaign...

Page 24

Scottish nationalism may be ludicrous, but it is still compelling

The Spectator

Rod Liddle relishes the beauty of a Scottish coastal village and senses the deep, inchoate but ineradicable grievance against the English who foot the bill Gardenstown,...

Page 26

Guess who invented the EU? It was Quisling

The Spectator

John Laughland reveals that before his notorious act of collaboration with the Nazis, the Norwegian politician was lobbying for a European Confederation T en years ago I wrote a...

Page 28

Strange kind of love

The Spectator

Sir: Liam Byrne’s breathless panegyric (‘Rise up, Englishmen’, 28 April) on the glories of being British must have left some of us pretty punch drunk. This is a man who...

Islam’s advancing strength

The Spectator

Sir: I thank Matthew Parris (Another voice, 28 April) for his courteous response to my article (‘Why there will be no future Pax Americana’, 14 April). However, Mr Parris...

No history of holocausts?

The Spectator

Sir: I’m sure the indigenous peoples of North America would have something to say about your correspondent Katherine Barlow’s assertion that Americans ‘don’t do...

Harry must not fight

The Spectator

Sir: Allow me, a Frenchman, to express my astonishment and my concern at the thought that the British army could send a royal prince to the front in Iraq. He will immediately be...

The EU elephant

The Spectator

Sir: Rod Liddle (‘A normal trip with Worst Late Western’, 28 April) wondered why John Major’s government, in the shape of Michael Heseltine, privatised the railways. It...

Parental professions

The Spectator

Sir: Charles Moore is right about the jokes made regarding the jobs that other people’s parents do (The Spectator’s Notes, 28 April). My father was a professional musician...

Rich and paw

The Spectator

Sir: In last week’s Style & Travel section, Victoria Mather gets socially airborne about dog names and breeds. She says dukes have labradors called Purdey, while dustmen have...

Page 30

As an expat Scot, I know how Scottish ministers lost touch with Scotland

The Spectator

T here is a thing that many Scots do when they meet with other Scots. They start to sound more Scottish. Their consonants either grow jagged or fade away all together, their...

Page 32

The English: the ‘missing persons’ of Europe

The Spectator

A reader complains that in my list of the failings of European countries I omitted Britain, and our national vice: hypocrisy. Are we habitually hypocritical? The accusation is...

Page 34

The elder statesman of open skies

The Spectator

Judi Bevan meets Sir Michael Bishop of BMI, who wants to give BA and Virgin a run for their money over the Atlantic — and has no plans to sell out to either of them I n his...

Page 36

Let us choose our own dustmen

The Spectator

Richard Northedge N ever mind how often the dustbins are emptied, this week’s elections should have been about who empties them. Now that we can choose our phone company and...

Page 38

Make a date at the destination station

The Spectator

Martin Vander Weyer visits a £600 million project which is not only spectacular but also on time and on budget I f you have a long-lost Continental lover, you have a little...

Page 40

It’s dotcom boom-time again — but can Soho really be the new Silicon Valley?

The Spectator

T he heady days of 1999 are back. Once again it’s fashionable to work for an internet start-up, even more so if you’re a part of the so-called ‘Web 2.0’ bonanza. (For...

Page 42

A different class

The Spectator

Matthew d’Ancona says Silverjet makes air travel a pleasure I n his novel The Information , Martin Amis gives the best account I have ever read of plane envy. Richard Tull,...

Page 43

Plastic fantastic

The Spectator

Sarah Sands B otox is so commonplace now that you would think a six-year-old child could administer it. According to the Parisian cosmetic surgeon, Doctor Nelly GauthierHazan,...

Page 44

Posh tots

The Spectator

Tanya Gold ‘W hen Brooklyn Beckham wears a new outfit we get telephone calls asking who designed it,’ says Dina Kingsman, the head buyer at the Harrods Baby Department....

Page 46

Rich pickings

The Spectator

Clarke Hayes Y ears ago, when I got my first allotment, friends and acquaintances used to vie and jostle for invitations to dinner, or a barbeque, especially during the summer...

Page 47

The world’s best concierge

The Spectator

Mark Palmer W e’ve just returned from a short break in Taormina, Sicily, and the person who made our trip so memorable was a tall, wiry man called Steven Ceschia. He’s not...

Page 48

A cut above

The Spectator

Anna Arco I t’s a curious fact about 21st-century England that as we get more and more uppity about animal rights, so blood sports (especially pheasant shooting) become more...

Page 50

The visit

The Spectator

Clarissa Tan I wish to write about a place of which I know everything yet nothing, where everything is familiar yet strange, a place where I feel I go too often, but never...

Page 53

A change of weather

The Spectator

Philip Hensher A USTERITY B RITAIN , 1945-51 by David Kynaston Bloomsbury, £25, pp. 692, ISBN 9780747579854 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 O ne day in July 1945, a...

Page 54

Challenging the Kremlin

The Spectator

Andrew Taylor T HE L ITVINENKO F ILE by Martin Sixsmith Macmillan, £16.99, pp. 311, ISBN 9780230531543 ✆ £13.59 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 B LOWING U P R USSIA by...

Page 55

The plot thickens

The Spectator

Leanda de Lisle T HE N OBLE R EVOLT : T HE O VERTHROW OF C HARLES I by John Adamson Orion, £25, pp. 742, ISBN 9780297842621 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 J ohn...

Page 56

At the feast

The Spectator

William Brett T EARING D OWN THE W ALL OF S OUND by Mick Brown Bloomsbury, £18.99, pp. 502, ISBN 9780747572435 ✆ £15.19 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 I n 2003, two days...

Page 57

Hitler’s natural accomplice

The Spectator

Frederic Raphael L ENI : T HE L IFE AND W ORK OF L ENI R IEFENSTAHL by Steven Bach Little, Brown, £25, pp. 386, ISBN 9780316861113 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 S...

Page 58

How the catastrophe happened

The Spectator

James Buchan T HE O CCUPATION OF I RAQ : W INNING THE W AR , L OSING THE P EACE by Ali A. Allawi Yale, £18.99, pp. 518, ISBN 9780300110159 ✆ £15.19 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870...

Page 59

Fantasy with a moral base

The Spectator

Robert S. C. Gordon A T RANQUIL S TAR by Primo Levi, translated by Ann Goldstein and Alessandra Bastagli Penguin, £20, pp. 164, ISBN 9780713999556 ✆ £16 (plus £2.45 p&p)...

Page 60

The unkindest cut

The Spectator

Robert Stewart P ANAMA F EVER : T HE B ATTLE TO B UILD THE C ANAL by Matthew Parker Hutchinson, £20, pp. 444, ISBN 9780091797041 ✆ £16 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 F rom...

Only obeying orders

The Spectator

Stuart Wheeler T HE L UCIFER E FFECT by Philip Zimbardo Ebury, £18.99, pp. 551, ISBN 9781844535776 ✆ £15.19 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 W ould you ever torture...

Page 61

The end of merriment

The Spectator

Blair Worden D ECENCY AND D ISORDER : T HE A GE OF C ANT , 1789-1837 by Ben Wilson Faber, £25, pp. 400, ISBN 9780571224685 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 ‘P...

Page 62

Not wearing well

The Spectator

Mary Kenny , a founding member of the Irish Women’s Liberation Movement, revisits The Women’s Room after 30 years T he Women’s Room (being a correction to the concept...

Page 63

Notes from the Underground

The Spectator

Andro Linklater M ALVINAS R EQUIEM by Rodolfo Fogwill, translated by Nick Caistor and Amanda Hopkinson Serpent’s Tail, £14.95, pp. 154, ISBN 9781852429652 A rmadillos dig,...

Page 64

Facing the music

The Spectator

Marcus Berkmann explains how he has survived 20 years as The Spectator’s pop critic I t suddenly occurs to me, with a jolt, that I have been writing about pop music for The...

Page 65

Timeless verities

The Spectator

Andrew Lambirth Clear Skies and Storm Clouds: Visions of Buckinghamshire between the Wars Buckinghamshire County Museum, Aylesbury, until 2 June The Flower Paintings: Ivon...

Page 66

At one with nature

The Spectator

Mark Glazebrook Y orkshire Sculpture Park is the first and best of the breed in the British Isles. Since 1977 it has activated 500 acres of undulating land between Barnsley and...

Page 68

Banality of evil

The Spectator

Lloyd Evans Kindertransport Hampstead Rafta, Rafta Lyttelton Called to Account Tricycle H olocaust art must be approached with care. There’s a worry that by finding fault...

Page 70

Dead end

The Spectator

Deborah Ross The Upside of Anger 15, Nationwide T he Upside of Anger stars Joan Allen (the wonderful, wonderful Joan Allen, that is) as Terry Wolfmeyer, a Michigan housewife...

Page 71

Simple and sumptuous

The Spectator

Giannandrea Poesio Triple Bill Royal Opera House I wish the term ‘ballet-theatre’ had not already been snatched and (mis)used by dance historians, for there is no better...

Page 72

Download dilemma

The Spectator

Peter Phillips T he issue of downloading classical music from the BBC for free represents a typically modern dilemma. On the face of it, why shouldn’t the BBC offer back to...

Preachy prig

The Spectator

Michael Tanner Owen Wingrave Linbury Studio B ritten’s penultimate opera, Owen Wingrave , has always been the Cinderella in that area of his work, and the production of it...

Page 74

Poetic justice

The Spectator

Kate Chisholm A teasing approach to the topical problem of immigration was aired on Radio Three late on Sunday night. ‘Denis Thatcher, my father, brings early tea./ Margaret...

Our island story

The Spectator

James Delingpole V ictoria’s Empire (BBC1, Sunday) is the BBC’s new Palinesque travelogue series in which comedienne Victoria Wood goes from exotic location to exotic...

Page 75

Trouble at club

The Spectator

Taki New York I t’s been a hellish week for Pug’s Club. A week in which I was unable to lend my good offices against the violent outbreak of disapprobation and...

Page 76

Devon occupation

The Spectator

Jeremy Clarke O f the 35 wedding guests, one other person, I noticed, was wearing a suit. On the strength of our being the only men in suits, I went over as the cake was being...

Page 77

The great escape

The Spectator

Aidan Hartley Gobi Desert W hen tourists from the world’s crowded cities first encounter Mongolia’s steppe, an ocean of grass empty of humans, they frequently turn...

Page 79

S tone, Vine and Sun, a modestly sized operation near Winchester,

The Spectator

keeps winning awards as the best independent wine merchant, and I’m not surprised. There’s a nimbleness to these smaller companies; chaps (or chapesses) whizz off to...

Page 80

M y friend Nick — OK, he’s not exactly my friend,

The Spectator

he’s my brother’s friend, but my brother lets his friends be mine, as he knows I’ve always struggled to make any of my own. Anyway, Nick says he’d like to take me to...

Page 82

A close shave

The Spectator

James Waldron luxuriates in a new breed of shaving unguents I ’ve never been one to look on the morning shave as a chore. We males have few rituals to enjoy, and those few...

Page 84

Guilty pleasures

The Spectator

Tom Norrington-Davies says pies should be elevated from junk-food status W hen is it hip to be square? When you are a pie of course. On a wintry Friday lunchtime, Square Pie’s...

Page 86

Virginia’s Historic Triangle

The Spectator

Jonathan Ray succumbs to the charm of America’s past T hey call it Virginia’s Historic Triangle, this tiny corner of the United States bounded by Jamestown, Yorktown and...

Page 95

Good Arthur Milton

The Spectator

FRANK KEATING I n those fresh, expectant springtimes of long ago, the last week of April was the very quintessence of the changeover the week he would have bid adieu to the...

Q. My best friend is widely admired by those few

The Spectator

men who have the opportunity to meet her. She wants a boyfriend but her work brings her into contact with virtually no single heterosexual men and she has exhausted the...

Q. We have old friends in the North Riding of

The Spectator

Yorkshire. We love going to stay with them in their charming and rambling old house, but we are soft southerners and Yorkshire seems to be freezing all year round. There is a...

Q. My husband has recently been diagnosed with Type 2

The Spectator

diabetes and now has to eat at seven o’clock in order to maintain his blood sugar level. Help, Mary, what should we do about having dinner with Top People? J.F., London SW12...