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Syrian nightmare

‘We are used to death,’ said Ismail. He had been to the funerals of four friends in a single week, all killed by aerial bombs. ‘We’re used to bloodshed. We’re adapted to the situation and this style of life now. It’s normal. If you lose someone, then the next day you say, OK, life must

Meet Boris Mark II

The make-up lady at the BBC’s Millbank studio in Westminster has noticed a change in Boris Johnson’s look. ‘His hair is much smarter now,’ she told me as she slapped anti-shine talc on my pate for the Daily Politics show. ‘But he still messes it up a bit after I’ve combed it.’ Boris Mark II

Brains for Trump

Last week more than 130 right-wing thinkers put their names to a defiant document — a list of ‘Scholars and Writers for America’ in support of Donald Trump. It includes the editors of five of the country’s leading conservative journals of ideas: R.R. Reno of the Christian conservative First Things; Roger Kimball of the New

Unhappy Pill

A study came out last week that should have caused great alarm. For 13 years, researchers at the University of Copenhagen studied more than a million women between the ages of 15 and 34 who were taking a type of drug — one that is popular in all developed countries. Taking this drug, the researchers found, correlated

The students fight back

Last week, students at York University staged a walkout from the sexual consent classes organised by their student union women’s officers. A quarter of the freshers decided they didn’t want to be lectured to by union worthies about when it’s OK to have sex. So they got up and left. ‘These talks are inherently patronising

Why cathedrals are soaring

Something strange is happening in the long decline of Christian Britain. We know that church attendance has plummeted two thirds since the 1960s. Barely half of Britons call themselves Christian and only a tiny group of these go near a church. Just 1.4 per cent regularly worship as Anglicans, and many of those do so

Who comes after Merkel?

A year from now, 60 million Germans go to the polls in the most important general election in mainland Europe for a generation. The result will define German — and European — politics for the next four years. There are huge questions to be resolved, from the refugee crisis to the financial crisis, but right

Notes on...

A pint of Landlord

Down a lane in Keighley, in the old West Riding of Yorkshire, they brew the greatest ale in the world. Timothy Taylor, the brewery is called, or Timmy Taylor’s, should you feel sufficiently familiar. And if you are not familiar with the ales brewed by these modest Yorkies, you’re clearly not an ale-drinker. And if