07/05/2011
7 May 2011

07 May 2011

7 May 2011

07 May 2011

Featured articles

Features
Gilead Ini
Web exclusive: A grim panorama

Tom Giles’ attempt – on The Spectator's Coffee House blog – to impugn CAMERA’s video documenting the BBC’s violations of its Editorial Guidelines is an example of the illogical and desperate flailing with which the BBC has consistently approached reasoned arguments about Panorama’s “A Walk in the Park”, a flagrantly biased documentary about Jerusalem.   Mr. Giles’s complaint relies in part on his assertion, with ominous undertones, that CAMERA’s brief video “re-edited” the Panorama documentary and shows only excerpts from the programme.

Web exclusive: A grim panorama
James Forsyth
Axeman in chief

After a year in government, most ministers look ten years older. Not Francis Maude. He bounds into the anteroom of his ministerial suite to greet me, wearing his customary open-necked shirt with a red check that matches the colour in his cheeks. In a confident voice, he says, ‘I just need to get some things decided and then we’ll be right with you.’ It is more like meeting a businessman at the height of a boom than a politician in the age of austerity.

Axeman in chief
Alan Judd
Terrorism after bin Laden

Two propositions: first, whatever its short-term consequences, the killing of Osama bin Laden will neither significantly hasten nor significantly delay the decline of al-Qa’eda. That is happening anyway. Secondly, however slowly or rapidly AQ declines, it will not significantly affect the global level of terrorism. We’re stuck with it anyway. But it’s manageable.Two propositions: first, whatever its short-term consequences, the killing of Osama bin Laden will neither significantly hasten nor significantly delay the decline of al-Qa’eda.

Terrorism after bin Laden
Andrew J. Bacevich
Mission impossible

The killing of Osama bin Laden settles nothing, decides nothing, and repairs nothing. Yet the passing of the al-Qa’eda leader just might serve an important purpose. We confront a moment of revelation: coming across bin Laden comfortably ensconced in a purpose-built compound in the middle of major Pakistani city down the street from the nation’s premier military academy should demolish once and for all any lingering illusions that Americans retain about their so-called global war on terror.

Mission impossible
Rod Liddle
The 24-hour rush to certainty leaves plenty of room for conspiracy theories

I know that Wills married Kate last weekend because I saw it with my own eyes. I didn’t have much choice in the matter because my wife was camped out in front of the TV for 12 hours being catty about Victoria Beckham’s Croydon facelift and stupid hat and generously summoning me in whenever Lady Amelia Spencer, the pouting blonde baddun accused of lamping some bloke in a Cape Town McDonald’s drive-thru restaurant (that’s how I like my quasi-royals to be), hove into view.

The 24-hour rush to certainty leaves plenty of room for conspiracy theories
Christina Lamb
Out of the shadows

Bin Laden’s death has exposed Pakistan’s double game with the WestEven those of us who did not believe that Osama bin Laden was producing his videos from a cave in a remote tribal mountain would never have guessed that he was, in fact, living in a ‘Come and Get Me’ three-storey house surrounded by cabbage fields just down the road from Pakistan’s top military academy.To many in Washington, here was final proof — if any were needed — that its supposed ally has been playing a double game; that, for the past ten years, Pakistan has been playing the role of US ally (and taking more than $18 billion of American aid) while all the time sheltering the Taleban and al-Qa’eda.

Out of the shadows
Anthony Gardner
Net loss

The scene is a drawing-room at nightfall. A group of weekenders sit in time-honoured tradition around a crackling fire. One is engrossed in a magazine; another chats with her boyfriend; the rest debate whether the word ‘zapateado’ is permissible in their board game. But this is not a house party as Terence Rattigan knew it: the magazine is being read on an iPad; the lovers are exchanging endearments by text message; the game-players have swapped the Scrabble set for a laptop with access to Wordscrape.

Net loss
Hugh Sebagmontefiore
Spy fiction

Have historians exaggerated Ian Fleming’s role in the cracking of the Enigma code?Ian Fleming is best known for his novels about the superspy James Bond. But his reputation as a creative genius has been considerably enhanced by his exploits during the second world war as a lieutenant commander in naval intelligence. He has been praised in particular for coming up with Operation Ruthless, the first viable plan to capture naval Enigma codebooks for Alan Turing and his codebreakers at Bletchley Park.

Spy fiction
Peter Oborne
PAKISTAN NOTEBOOK

Karachi is a notoriously lively city, with gun battles on the streets a daily occurrence — so it seems only sensible to stay in the comfort and safety of the Sind Club, a grand institution built during British rule in the centre of the town.Karachi is a notoriously lively city, with gun battles on the streets a daily occurrence — so it seems only sensible to stay in the comfort and safety of the Sind Club, a grand institution built during British rule in the centre of the town.

PAKISTAN NOTEBOOK
Theodore Dalrymple
Scarborough unfair

If it is evidence of the decline of British civilisation that you are after, you cannot do better than go to Scarborough. It is precisely because the material traces of that civilisation are still so much in evidence there, albeit dolefully altered, that the impression is so strong and so painful. The town retains its wonderful position, of course. One is still struck immediately on arrival by ‘the freshness of the air, so different from what is breathed in the interior of England’, as described by Dr John Kelk in his The Scarborough Spa, its new chemical analysis and medicinal uses; to which is added, On the Utility of the Bath (3rd ed.

Scarborough unfair
David Blackburn
Web exclusive: “AV is the thin of the wedge, that’s why we support it”

Nigel Farage is in a bullish mood. Also, the True Finns Party has shot a warning at Brussels by winning nearly 19 percent of the vote in a general election. Mr Farage hopes that the combination of an unpopular and insufficiently Eurosceptic coalition government, the EU’s budget increases and the European Court of Human Right’s recent controversies will win him similar victories. “I’ve waited a long time for this.

Web exclusive: “AV is the thin of the wedge, that’s why we support it”
Next up: The Week