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How Ukraine can win

If Ukraine lasts for another thousand years, people will still say, ‘This was their finest hour.’ The Ukrainians’ magnificent defiance will shape their country’s image in the world for generations to come, as the lone stand led by Winston Churchill did for Britain. But what almost certainly awaits Ukrainians in the next few days is

Why Boris can’t blame rising energy prices on Ukraine

Are you ready to take cold showers to do your bit for the war effort? Protestors in Berlin have been holding up placards suggesting they’d sooner do so than use Russia’s gas. Boris Johnson has called on the British public to make similar sacrifices, solemnly telling us that we need to drop cheap Russian energy

The war in Ukraine may benefit the populist right

Ravenna, Italy Ever since Russian tanks rolled into Ukraine, it’s been widely assumed that Europe’s right-wing populists are finished. Figures such as Marine Le Pen, Matteo Salvini and Viktor Orban have all been cast as Putin’s useful idiots – defending his nefarious deeds because they saw him as a vital ideological ally. Now that Putin’s

Putin has revived the cruelty of the Soviet regime

Among the many Russians who have protested against the war in Ukraine was 26-year-old Muscovite Aleksandra Kaluzhskikh, who was arrested earlier this month. She managed to record her interrogation while she was being beaten and sexually humiliated by police shouting expletives. ‘Look at the schmuck,’ one of her interrogators said, as Kaluzhskikh sighed and sobbed.

The invasion of Ukraine has exposed the West’s impotence

When the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, addressed the House of Commons recently, he was afforded two standing ovations from MPs, both lasting about 40 seconds, before and after he spoke. He was probably used to it, having received a similar reception when addressing the European Parliament a week before. On both occasions, then, he was

The decline and fall of Durham university

When Mark Hillery – Durham University’s largest donor – cut his funding for the institution last month over ongoing Covid-19 restrictions, the students of Collingwood College had the most to worry about. Hillery had previously endowed his alma mater with a £5.6 million arts centre, a shiny new gym and a revamp of its junior

Prince Philip’s links with the Russian imperial court

The late Duke of Edinburgh would have had so much to say on the abomination being wreaked upon Ukraine. Prince Philip was our last living link with the Russian imperial court. He enjoyed childhood encounters with a killer of Rasputin. He also played his part in trying to bring post-communist Russia round to western ways

Notes on...

In defence of slugs: gastropods are seriously misunderstood

Slugs and snails are the bane of every gardener who tries to grow strawberries, leafy and tuberous vegetables, flowering bulbs and soft-shooted perennials. But Britain’s gastropods are ‘misunderstood’, according to Dr Andrew Salisbury, principal entomologist at the Royal Horticultural Society, which announced this month that it will no longer class slugs and snails as ‘pests’.