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Kate Andrews

Can Joe Biden stop America’s ‘uncivil war’?

Having won more votes than any presidential candidate in American history, Joe Biden might have hoped for a triumphant entry into Washington. Instead, he travelled to the inauguration in a private plane to deliver his speech to more members of the National Guard than guests. A combination of the pandemic and security fears ruined normal

At last, America has a gaffe-prone president again

‘Folks, I can tell you, I’ve known eight presidents, three of them intimately.’ So said then vice-president Joe Biden in 2012. A month earlier, he had assured a crowd in New York that President Barack Obama could, in Teddy Roosevelt’s famous words, ‘speak softly but carry a big stick’ when it came to international relations.

Biden and the darker side of Irish-American history

My introduction to an Irish-American sense of history was not in Boston or New York but in the American Midwest. I was visiting the eccentric House on the Rock in rural Wisconsin. The receptionist told me proudly that she was Irish. ‘My people were driven out during the Famine by Cromwell… and Strongbow.’ I admired

What the West can do about China’s Uyghur labour camps

Coca-Cola’s most controversial bottling plant is a huge factory located in an industrial zone just outside the city of Urumqi in western China. Logistically, the factory is well situated: the international airport is a short drive away, as is the high-speed train station close to the fashionable Wyndham hotel. But the problem for Coca-Cola —

The man behind Justin Welby

In the leafy seclusion of the Lambeth Palace grounds, Archbishop Justin Welby goes for his daily jog. He used to run along the Thames and over the bridges until Canon David Porter, his Chief of Staff, put a stop to it. David Porter grew up in Belfast in the 1960s and he knows how easy

Navalny and Putin: the next chapter

‘Arrest me? Why would anyone arrest me?’ said Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny to reporters last week as he boarded a Moscow-bound plane. Four hours later he was in jail — but not before spending an hour circling above the Russian capital as riot police shut down the airport where 2,000 supporters awaited him and

The problem with pop psychology

James Bond is not what he used to be. His motivations were once so simple: MI6 had told him to do it. Of late, though, he has been propelled about the screen by his inner demons, shooting people he’s not supposed to shoot, revisiting his childhood, collecting traumas, developing a mother-complex with Judi Dench. What

Notes on...

My historical re-enactment group’s battle with Silicon Valley

The Wimborne Militia of Dorset prides itself on being the only formally commissioned ‘private army’ in England. We’re well known locally but less well known in California, which is perhaps why Facebook banned our homepage a few weeks ago, thinking we were a right-wing Trumpian ‘militia’. Its algorithm seems not to recognise historical re-enactment societies,