The powers that choose to play the Great Game on the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan have never prospered. Despite the courage of generals and the brains of political agents, their best-laid plans – whether British in the 19th century, Russian in the 20th, or American in the 21st – have generally ended in disaster and retreat. Now it seems that China – which has long treated Pakistan as its client and proxy in a push for a defining regional role, most recently through the Belt and Road I
Two years ago, after yet another couple of nights of rioting in the banlieues, twenty retired French generals wrote an open letter to Emmanuel Macron, then about to run for a second term, warning that the divisions between communities and increasing “violence and nihilism” in France would eventually cause a social breakdown, with a risk of “chaos” leading to a “civil war” that would then “require” a military “intervention… in a dangerous mission to protect our civilisational values and safeguard
A father’s last moments protecting his son before he was murdered in the street by a gang armed with machetes and zombie knives has been caught on CCTV. Kelvin Ward, 50, was stabbed after leaving a KFC with his son, who the gang had been trying to kill, on 18 April. The armed gang launched themselves at Mr Ward as they chased him across the street, before he was fatally stabbed.
Call off the search: the worst show of 2023 is here. That is, unless you’re a 13-year-old boy, in which case Obliterated (Netflix) is your dream product. Guns! Naked breasts! A lead character who is a government operative but also looks smokin’ hot in a red bikini! And that’s before we get to the script, in which a foreign baddie plots to nuke Las Vegas. Standing in his way is an elite tactical unit (the best kind) whose members say things like: “We’re supposed to stop the bad guy with the bomb”
How’s Brexit working out? There have been some marginal positives, but in terms of the economy, it’s been mainly downside, and on the issues that really matter to voters – particularly immigration and a better functioning health service with more money behind it – Brexit has so far manifestly failed to deliver.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov faced Western critics while attending international security talks Thursday in Northern Macedonia, where he blamed “NATO’s reckless expansion to the East” for war returning to Europe. Lavrov arrived in Skopje to attend meetings hosted by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The diplomats of several OSCE member nations, including Ukraine, boycotted the event due to Lavrov's planned attendance amid Russia's war in Ukraine.
As Eurocrats-in-chief go, Ursula von der Leyen has generally been relatively inoffensive to British sensibilities. Most of us were dimly aware that she was one of those people who excel at “failing upwards”, with her emergence as President of the European Commission following a chequered spell as Germany’s defence minister.