Andrew Roberts

Andrew Roberts sits in the House of Lords as Lord Roberts of Belgravia

‘A war for Middle East stability’: Israeli President Isaac Herzog on what’s at stake in the conflict with Hamas

President Isaac ‘Bougie’ Herzog is Israeli aristocracy. His father, Chaim Herzog, was the sixth president, serving between 1983 and 1993; his grandfather Yitzhak Herzog was chief rabbi; his maternal uncle was Abba Eban, the most famous of the country’s foreign ministers. After leading the Israeli Labor party and the parliamentary opposition in the Knesset between

The myth of the Boston Tea Party

At 6.30 p.m. on Thursday 16 December 1773, a group of between 100 and 150 Americans raided three East India Company merchantmen moored in Boston and threw 92,000lb of tea (worth $1.7 million in today’s terms) into the harbour. A central part of the American founding story, the 250th anniversary of the Boston Tea Party

Henry Kissinger saved us from a much worse world

‘If I give you a copy of my book,’ I said to Henry Kissinger two months ago, ‘which chapter will you read first?’ ‘I will look myself up in the index,’ he replied in that voice that sounded like a cement mixer on the blink, ‘and start there.’ He automatically assumed that a book I

Why are House of Lords clerics so anti-Tory?

The bishops can smell blood in the water. Sensing how badly the Conservatives are doing in the polls, the two archbishops and 24 bishops of the Church of England in the House of Lords appear to have thrown aside any pretence of political objectivity and impartiality and have pitched themselves all-out against the government. This

My hope for Ukraine

Kyiv When Winston Churchill visited bomb sites during the Blitz, the most common sentiment he heard was, ‘We can take it!’, followed closely by ‘Give it ’em back!’. That emotion is very evident in Kyiv, where Ukrainians are understandably nonplussed at opposition in some British newspapers like the Times to their drone attacks on Moscow.

The Lockdown Files are a historian’s dream

For all that the Lockdown Files, as reported in the Telegraph, sometimes read like the screenplay of The Thick of It, they will be a wonderful resource for historians. Whatever one thinks of the morality of Isabel Oakeshott’s actions vis-à-vis Matt Hancock, we now have 2.3 million words of WhatsApp messages that offer a rare

Farewell to arms: Britain’s depleted military

Ayear ago on Friday, President Vladimir Putin unleashed blitzkrieg on Ukraine. It was an unprovoked assault that has so far led to more than 200,000 people being killed or wounded, but has failed in its intention of establishing Russian hegemony over its democratic neighbour. The West and much of the rest of the civilised world

The monarchy will survive Diana’s death (1997)

Today marks 25 years since the death of Diana, Princess of Wales. Andrew Roberts wrote The Spectator’s cover story that week, republished below and available at our digitised archive. The story that ended so horribly in that functional concrete Parisian tunnel early on Sunday had begun with a television show in 1969, when the victim

The triumph of the National Army Museum

Five years ago this month I wrote an article in The Spectator denouncing the National Army Museum after its £24 million Heritage Lottery Funded refurbishment. The concept of decolonisation was then in its infancy, and I criticised the museum’s relentless attempts to make visitors ashamed of the British Army’s supposed legacy of imperialism and slavery,

What the Marxist Tariq Ali gets wrong about Winston Churchill

Tariq Ali, the Marxist writer and activist, believes that a ‘Churchill cult’ is ‘drowning all serious debate’ about the wartime leader, and that ‘an alternative was badly needed’. He has therefore written a book that parrots every earlier revisionist slur about Churchill – war criminal, evil imperialist, mass murderer, pro-fascist – from detractors such as

The courage on Ukraine’s front line

Central to the question of whether or not Ukraine can survive as an independent state is that of re-supply, not just of drones and anti-tank weaponry but also of food, especially if the conflict lasts for months or even years. The vast agricultural centre of the country is not being seeded, with potentially catastrophic consequences.

Would your party pass the ‘Gove Test’?

I’m on a book tour which involves 65 speeches in 60 days in Britain, Washington, Philadelphia, Virginia, Mexico, California and New York. I suspect the second part will be tougher than the first, as Americans understandably hold a less charitable view of King George III. I’m a lot kinder about their Founding Fathers than the

Churchill as villain – but is this a character assassination too far?

The veteran journalist Geoffrey Wheatcroft claims in his prologue to Churchill’s Shadow that: ‘This is not a hostile account, or not by intention, nor consciously “revisionist”, or contrarian,’ before launching into a long book that is virtually uninterrupted in its hostility to Winston Churchill, his memory and especially anyone who has had the temerity to

Diary – 7 March 2019

John McDonnell might think Churchill a villain, but he’s beloved in America. I’ve just returned from a ten-week, 18-state, 27-city, 87-speech book tour there, and can report that the enthusiasm for all things Churchillian in the USA is stronger now than at any time since his death. Merely bringing out a new biography of him

Diary – 11 October 2018

I’m giving 93 speeches over the next four months to promote my new book, Churchill: Walking with Destiny, but I don’t actually like public speaking. I enjoy it once it’s over, but not while it’s happening. I envy those writers of the 1970s who just got on with writing the next book as soon as

Napoleon dynamite | 14 June 2018

The Musée de l’Armée at Les Invalides in Paris has a new exhibition that I believe to be the best and most extensive on the Emperor in three decades. Anyone interested in Napoleon Bonaparte, early 19th-century military history and strategy, the Grande Armée’s campaigns from 1796 to 1815, monumental battle paintings, First Empire beaux-arts, uniforms,

Churchill did not have an affair – so don’t fall for Channel 4’s spin

‘Revealed,’ blares the Sunday Telegraph. ‘Churchill’s secret affair and the painting that could have damaged his reputation.’ ‘Winston Churchill’s secret love Doris Castlerosse a blackmail risk,’ agrees The Sunday Times. At least the Daily Mail inserted a note of doubt in its headline – ‘Churchill may have cheated with society’s wildest woman’ – and included

With Europe, but not of it

Dr Felix Klos is an extremely personable, highly intelligent American-Dutch historian who has undertaken much archival research, worked extremely hard and is an excellent writer. In trying to persuade us that Churchill favoured Britain joining a federal Europe, however, he comes up against several immovable obstacles. The most serious of these is that in the