Afghanistan

Lesley Blanch in a bar in Menton in the south of France, in 1961Lesley Blanch in a bar in Menton in the south of France, in 1961

Lesley Blanch: a true original on the wilder shores of exoticism

28 March 2015 9:00 am

Lesley Blanch (1904–2007) will be remembered chiefly for her gloriously extravagant The Wilder Shores of Love, the story of four…

The Cricket World Cup needs minnows

21 February 2015 9:00 am

Graeme Swann arrived late for the last cricket World Cup. His wife had given birth before the tournament and he…

A major-general names the guilty men

24 January 2015 9:00 am

The author of this primer to the long-overdue Chilcot report, a retired sapper (Royal Engineers) major-general, nails his colours to…

I guarded Rudolf Hess

15 November 2014 9:00 am

I had the misfortune to meet Lord Richards on probably the darkest day of his 42 years in the military.…

Portrait of the week

1 November 2014 9:00 am

Home The last British combat troops turned over Camp Bastion in Helmand to Afghan forces and withdrew from Afghanistan after…

Rochester’s special qualities, and the price of Ebola.com

1 November 2014 9:00 am

What’s special about Rochester What is special about Rochester and Strood? — Rochester has the second oldest cathedral and school…

Does Jonathan Powell really want to negotiate with the Islamic State?

18 October 2014 9:00 am

Jonathan Powell’s stance on negotiating with violent extremists is consistently inconsistent and slippery

The US military should be winning wars, not fighting Ebola

11 October 2014 9:00 am

In the case of America, the answer is now practically everything – except perhaps winning wars

Ali risked his life to escape Afghanistan — and now teaches Britons how to survive there

15 February 2014 9:00 am

‘Brown is very good — no Cameron. David Cameron no good,’ he said. Just in case we weren’t sure what…

Ahmed Rashid: The five things that must go right for Afghanistan to prosper

14 December 2013 9:00 am

All bets are off when the US troops pull out

Soldiers aren't social workers, Mr Cameron. Remember that before taking on hopeless wars

16 November 2013 9:00 am

The ghost people, the letter people. The ones we hear about in court but never call by their real name;…

The one good thing we're leaving in Afghanistan

2 November 2013 9:00 am

Afghanistan’s new, British-led military academy may prove our most lasting legacy

Lesson of Afghanistan? That you can, after all, bomb your way to the negotiating table

22 June 2013 9:00 am

It’s not just soldiers who risk their lives in Afghanistan. Anyone who enters the country’s judicial service becomes an assassination…

Théâtre de la Gaîté performers at Niagara Falls, 1892

The Society of Timid Souls, by Polly Morland - review

18 May 2013 9:00 am

In this book about courage, Polly Morland talks to lots of people who should know what it is. She talks…

And the Mountain Echoed, by Khaled Hosseini - review

11 May 2013 9:00 am

The American comedian Stephen Colbert once joked that when he publicly criticised the novels of Khaled Hosseini, his front garden…

‘I was detained as a potential suicide bomber’

23 March 2013 9:00 am

To the Lahore Literary Festival. As I cross the border from India, Pakistan is experiencing an unprecedented wave of sectarian…

Liaison duties: Randall Carter (Michael McShane) in ‘Bluestone 42’

Bluestone 42: Dad's Army it isn't

9 March 2013 9:00 am

The thing that always used to bother me about M*A*S*H as a child was the lack of combat. You’d see…

All the world’s a stage

2 June 2012 6:00 pm

In Translations, Brian Friel’s play about English military and cultural imperialism, the frustrated teacher Manus explains how he uses ‘the…

I hope our Jubilee Queen, unlike the last, outlives a hopeless foreign war

2 June 2012 1:00 pm

War in South Africa — the second Boer war — was already brewing by Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897.…

Ways of making men talk

24 March 2012 12:15 pm

Eric Rosenbach is a former academic who is now deputy assistant secretary of defence in Washington. Aki Peritz used to…

The view from the top

3 March 2012 10:00 am

Halfway through this book, the veil lifted, and I thought: ‘I see! I see what he’s trying to do!’ Pickering…

Clashing by night

18 June 2011 12:00 am

Cables from Kabul is Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles’s valedictory account of his years as ambassador to Kabul (2007-9) and as this country’s Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (2009-10).

Redefining the war

14 May 2011 12:00 am

Our aim in Afghanistan is no longer to secure victory but to avoid obvious defeat, says Alex Massie

‘This time it will be different’

12 March 2011 12:00 am

Philip Hensher recalls the costly Soviet adventure in Afghanistan in the 1980s, and compares it to the British involvement there in the 19th century and the present day