Category Archives: World

The Arab world must find its own way

Two weeks ago I wrote a long essay on Israel, which focused mainly on the Israeli government and its wider network of support. But Israel is simply an actor in a wider drama centred on the Middle East. Today I … Continue reading

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Don’t blame Tony Blair for rise of ISIS

The rampages of the ISIS terrorist group (also known as The Islamic State) have taken the lead in our news, pushing Gaza and Ukraine down the agenda. They present a truly chilling spectre as they murder or push out anybody … Continue reading

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The unfolding tragedy of Israel/Palestine

It has been a terrible few weeks in Israel and Gaza. My Facebook account is full of people condemning Israel’s bombardment. A lesser number of commenters try to defend Israel’s actions. I am not planning to join this chorus of … Continue reading

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Austria: a social democracy that works

I have been on holiday to St Wolfgang in Austria in the last two weeks, which explains why I have not posted anything recently (NB the picture is of nearby Hallstatt, not St Wolfgang). This holiday was mainly about fresh … Continue reading

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Can the European Parliament address the EU’s democratic deficit?

As I have often remarked on this blog, the European Union plays the tortoise in Aesop’s fable to the United States’ hare. The EU’s forward motion is imperceptible and it is easy to make fun of it, compared to the … Continue reading

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Dresden: reclaiming old glory

In my post on Berlin, I suggested that the British bombing of German civilians in the Second World War might be considered a crime. The most cited case of egregious bombing by the British occurred with the attack on Dresden on … Continue reading

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Ukraine: as Russia wins the battle it is still losing the war

The picture from Ukraine remains as depressing as ever. Following the ouster of the kleptocratic President Viktor Yanukovych in February, Russia has taken the opportunity to destabilise the country, annexing Crimea and turning the east and south against the west … Continue reading

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Berlin: Germany faces its history

I’m just back from an Easter break in Berlin, Dresden and Prague. I will post on each of these cities, starting today with Berlin. This was my first visit to the city for 30 years - last time it was still divided … Continue reading

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Economics is in denial. A new crisis builds

When the financial meltdown of 2008 to 2009 occurred, most people said that the science of economics was in state of collapse. And yet conventional economics ploughed on with barely a wobble. To see this you only have to listen to the commentary … Continue reading

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Putin is no Hitler, but we have to draw a line

For those of us who take an interest in history, it has been a scary few days, as Russia flexes its muscles over Ukraine. It is the sort of behaviour that can lead to war, if not now, then the … Continue reading

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