7 JUNE 2003

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The Spectator

M r Tony Blair, the Prime Minister, faced an investigation by the all-party Commons foreign affairs select committee into claims that he had misled the nation about weapons of...

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Free Jeffrey Archer now

The Spectator

effrey Archer, the disgraced peer, should be let out of prison as soon as he would be if he were Joe Bloggs, the disgraced dustman. In July 2001 Archer was given a four year...

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The Spectator

L ong before there was any public outcry that Tony Blair had 'lied' about weapons of mass destruction, intelligence sources were worried and some, privately, said so. Perhaps...

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The NoW is bad news, but the police were

The Spectator

just as bad in the Posh 'kidnap' case A lmost everyone dislikes the News of the World, including many of its readers. It is coarse. intrusive, hypocritical and sanctimonious....

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Me Questing Vole F ' F

The Spectator

, urther to my mention of the Deputy Prime Minister's newfound enthusiasm for croquet, a kindly reader, Charles Hastings, directs me to the account of another Prescottian...

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A conspiracy theory too far

The Spectator

Andrew Gilligan analyses the astonishing charge by John Reid that there is a plot by 'rogue elements' in the intelligence services to damage the Prime Minister T n showbiz, they...

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The great

The Spectator

pretender Peter Oborne says that Tony Blair's troubles over WMD and the euro demonstrate again that the PM does not say what he means or mean what he says ater this summer, on...

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Ancient Et modern

The Spectator

Nearly 75 per cent of university lecturers think the current intake of students is the worst they can remember. Plato may help us decide what 'worst' means; and an important...

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Why I quit teaching

The Spectator

Nick Butt says he resigned as headmaster of a Norfolk school because of idiotic government bureaucracy T was on holiday when I read about my resignation as headmaster of St...

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The noble feat of Nike

The Spectator

Globalisation — otherwise known as 'ruthless international capitalism' — is enriching the world's poor, says Johan Norberg N ike. It means victory. It also means a type of...

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Mind your language

The Spectator

'If you dial 1471,' writes Dr Roger James, a reader, naturally, 'you are likely to be told by a recorded female voice that "The caller withheld their number." This is an example...

Iraq: what must be done now

The Spectator

Mark Steyn, just back from the Middle East, says that a new order cannot be rushed into existence New Hampshire 0 n the face of it, Jordan's election this month would seem to...

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Banned wagon: global

The Spectator

A weekly survey of world restrictions on freedom and free trade 'Fair trade' coffee has become as much a staple of the middle-class kitchen as organic carrots and free-range...

I am a Tory to my toes

The Spectator

Chris Patten defends himself, and his vision of Europe, against his right-wing critics I . t is modestly flattering to find one's views the subject of occasional comment by...

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Is Saddam in Russia?

The Spectator

Raymond Keene says that chess players have a hunch about what has happened to the former Iraqi dictator T n Moscow on 19 March a press conference was held at the headquarters...

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Travel warnings are bad for business

The Spectator

The Kenyan foreign minister, Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka, says that thousands are being laid off as a result of Britain's ban on flights to Nairobi Nairobi bout four months ago I...

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A fat cat writes: Away with this girthist

The Spectator

and speciesist bias in boardrooms CHRISTOPI-WP FiLDES t is a sad reflection on modern busi ness life that the debate on corporate g overnance and boardroom pay should be...

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An architectural nightmare in which we may soon find ourselves lost

The Spectator

ecently I read W.G. Sebald's Austerlitz, described as a novel but to my mind more a series of essays on architectural oddities and natural phenomena (such as moths) which...

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Axed by the BBC

The Spectator

From Janet Daley Sir: What an extraordinary tangle of contradictions the BBC has generated about its coverage on the night of the local elections! Matthew Parris (Another voice,...

Major and Maastricht

The Spectator

From Lord Deramore Sir: John Major (Why we must veto this alien constitution', 24 May) is right to demand a referendum on the draft European constitution, but his article...

Lenin remembered

The Spectator

From Dr Vera M. Dailey Lederman Sir: I am surprised that Adam Zamoyski, while reviewing Anne Applebaum's book (17 May), is surprised that the Russian Gulags have not produced...

Opium rules

The Spectator

From Mr P. G. Urben Sir: Peter °borne and Lucy Morgan Edwards CA victory for drug-pushers', 31 May) omitted one significant factor in the current Afghan opium trade. In....

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Too kind to Canada

The Spectator

From Dr Jeremy Stocker Sir: Having also lived and worked in Canada, I cannot let Paul Robinson's eulogy of all things Canadian (Land of the free'. 31 May) go unchallenged. We do...

The stalker's tale

The Spectator

From Si? Malcolm Rifkind Sir: My attention has been drawn to a scurrilous item in your most recent issue concerning my stalking activities in the Outer Hebrides around ten years...

Rod and the P-word

The Spectator

From Mr Simon Evans Sir: I am appalled by the tone of Rod Liddle's piece (They love to hate us', 31 May) and the use of the word `pikey . which is, as you and he should know,...

Morbid morale-booster

The Spectator

From Mr David Wilson Sir: As is to be expected, Peter Jones's summing up of military morale is clear and concise (Ancient and modem, 31 May). There is, however, an ambiguity,...

Jobs for the peasantry

The Spectator

From Mr Jonathan Guinness Sir: Dr E.G. Klepfish (Letters, 31 May) tells us that 'Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip are major job and wealth providers for the...

Travelling with Supermac

The Spectator

From Mr John Gilroy Sir: Paul Johnson's memories of Harold Macmillan on the Tube (And another thing, 31 May) brought to mind a further memory of the PM on public transport by...

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How de Gaulle defeated the Vichyite tendency in the United States

The Spectator

FRANK JOHNSON L ast week was the week when plenty of Britons, though not their government, seemed to place themselves on guard against M. Giscard's constitution. It was...

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The government is addicted to persecuting fat slobs who smoke

The Spectator

am writing this article at my diningroom table. To my left is a bottle of cut-price Bulgarian Soave, to my right, stacked neatly in their three smart black packets, 60...

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Events, dear boy, events

The Spectator

Philip Hensher SOWING THE WIND by John Keay John Murray, £25. pp. 448, ISBN 0719555883 A s everybody knows, as soon as you start to talk to any citizen of any Middle Eastern...

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Gluons, bosons and quarks

The Spectator

Robert Macfarlane A SHORT HISTORY OF NEARLY EVERYTHING by Bill Bryson Doubleday, 120, pp. 515. ISBN 0385408188 T his modestly titled book, Bill Bryson tells us at its outset,...

The best of British

The Spectator

Miranda France BRICK LANE by Monica All Doubleday, £12.99, pp. 413, ISBN 038560484X THE VOICES by Susan Elderkin Fourth Estate, £16.99, pp. 323. ISBN 1841152013 I f you are...

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Speculating into the void

The Spectator

Peter Dempsey COSMOPOLIS by Don DeLillo Picador, £16.99, pp. 209, ISBN 0330912760 T hough Don DeLillo published his first novel in 1971, it was during the 1980s with such books...

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From gin craze to twin Krays

The Spectator

Ian Thomson LONDON'S UNDERWORLD by Fergus Linnane Robson Books, £16.95, pp. 288, ISBN 186105548X 1 n this jolly history of London crime, Fergus Linnane fathoms the city's...

Blood and Sand

The Spectator

David Hughes

CHOPIN'S FUNERAL by Benita Eisler Little, Brown, £16.99, pp. 231, ISBN 0316860212 L mong those whom in adoles

The Spectator

cence I wanted to be when I grew up was Chopin. His music seemed very close to sex and the misery of not having it. His etudes were a brown study, his very nocturnes suggested...

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Jolly serious work

The Spectator

Hugh Massingberd AN INSPECTOR RECALLS by Derek Sherborn The Book Guild, i16.95, pp. 300, ISBN 1857766536 B ack in the early 1980s I set off with my lamented friend Patrick...

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Pursued by the Furies

The Spectator

Digby Durrant THE CALLIGRAPHER by Edward Docx Fourth Estate, £.10.99, pp. 353, ISBN 1841155438 T wo men stand reading a handscripted copy of Donne's poem, 'The Legacy'....

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The biggest bang in the world

The Spectator

Justin Marozzi KRAKATOA: THE DAY THE WORLD EXPLODED, AUGUST 27, 1883 by Simon Winchester Viking, .06.99, pp. 408, ISBN 0066212855 H ow irritating, I thought after completing...

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All over the place

The Spectator

Sebastian Smee LOOT by Nadine Gordimer Bloomsbury, £16.99, pp. 240, ISBN 07747564973 N adine Gordimer's lazily allusive and unkempt prose style makes most of the stories in her...

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A nest

The Spectator

of vipers Philip Ziegler THE HEAT OF THE KITCHEN by Bernard Donoughue Politico:s, £25, pp. 392, ISBN 1842750518 GLIMMERS OF TWILIGHT by Joe Haines Politico's, £20, pp. 216....

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Under the influence

The Spectator

Felicity Owen on the wide-ranging success of the Prince's Foundation H RH the Prince of Wales's two charities bearing his name rightly enjoy wide approval. Yet their work and...

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Real merits

The Spectator

Andrew Lamhirth The Summer Exhibition Royal Academy of Arts until 10 August T he season is with us again, and it's time to wander down to Burlington House for that great...

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Ahead of his time

The Spectator

Laura Gascoigne Thomas Jones (1742-1803): An Artist Rediscovered 1 n his memoirs, the Welsh painter Thomas Jones (1742-1803) attributes the premature death of his fellow...

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Shining example

The Spectator

Toby Young Us and Them Hampstead Theatre Elmina's Kitchen The Cottesloe Little Baby Nothing The Bush I t's taken me a while, but I'm gradually warming up to Jenny Topper, the...

Disobeying orders

The Spectator

Michael Tanner Tristan and Isolde Coliseum pistan und Isolde at Glyndebourne was / followed five evenings later by Tristan and Isolde at the Coliseum, the first revival of...

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Radical moves

The Spectator

Giannandrea Poesio Nederland Dans Theater 2 Sadler's Wells Theatre T hose who love Jiri Kylian for his distinctively fluid choreography might find 27'52" a little shocking....

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For better not worse

The Spectator

Marcus Berkmann Td rather jack/Than Fleetwood Mac,' 1sang two dippy girls in the heady summer of 1988, thus cocking a snook at all the sorry old people who still occasionally...

They've worn well

The Spectator

Robin Holloway So — Luciano Berio (1925-2003) — they called you 'Lucky Luciano' 'Rossini of the avant-garde', — another light out, the 'gaiety of the nations' depleted, no...

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The charms of Chelsea

The Spectator

Ursula Buchan Tdon't mind admitting it, it was a rather 1clever wheeze. I managed to acquire a ticket for Press Day at Chelsea — the Monday, you know — by bringing up a plant...

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Doing a nosedive

The Spectator

Mark Steyn Anger Management 15, selected cinemas - if, like the Adam Sandler production you make a movie every week, the law of averages suggests that sooner or later you're...

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Too heavy handed

The Spectator

James Delingpole I 've had to give up on The Forsyte Saga, I'm afraid. I stuck it out through the whole of the first series, which I rather enjoyed. But in the new one I find...

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I'm sorry, they haven't a clue

The Spectator

Michael Vestey W hen I tuned in to Fi Glover's morning programme on BBC Radio Five Live last Wednesday I thought for a moment I was listening to a British spokeswoman for the...

Humbling experience

The Spectator

Tristan Garel-Jones Tf anyone believes that the EU can 'impose cultural and political homogeneity, they should come to Madrid for the festival of St Isidore. Twenty-nine...

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Truth twisters

The Spectator

Taki New York I remember well a conversation I had with Gianni Agnelli in the winter of 1963 about John Profumo and lying: 'Poor man,' said the charismatic Fiat chairmanto-be,...

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Beyond Boswell

The Spectator

Jeremy Clarke A i] I knew about Corsica before going there last week for a touring holiday was that it is a French possession, that Napoleon hailed from there and that James...

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Mingling with

The Spectator

the migh ty Petronelia Wyatt T here I was standing in a room with the word 'Service' painted on the door, in the Gellert hotel in Budapest. I was attempting to iron a pair of...

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Damning in vain

The Spectator

Jaspistos In Competition No. 2292 you were invited to provide a hostile review of a book that has the effect of making the reader tempted to buy it. 'It is very rare to find...

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A week to remember

The Spectator

MIChAEL HENDERSON I s there anywhere more beautiful in May than England? And can anybody recall a more glorious week than the one we have just enjoyed? The answer to the first...

Dear Maty

The Spectator

Q. Earlier this year we went to stay with friends in Devon for the weekend. Our host went to tremendous trouble trying to find enough horses to enable our whole family (of six)...