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A pale shadow of democracy


It’s a remarkable irony that the methods that helped bring down one empire are now being used to expand another.

Italy’s Rifondazione: the radical left at the crossroads


Half a million demonstrated in Rome last Saturday. The slogans of the march were "Free Giuliana" and "Free the Iraqi people". The first slogan referred to Giuliana Sgrena, a journalist with Il Manifesto, the centre left daily paper. She is being held hostage in Iraq and was shown on video last week appealing to the Italian government to withdraw its troops from Iraq.

Obstacles on Bush’s road


NO ONE can accuse George Bush of setting his sights low. His inaugural speech last week — delivered to what amounted to a mass rally of the Christian fundamentalist right — promised more of the neo-conservative medicine that gave us the conquest of Iraq.

When banks get in debt


THE WORLD media's attention has been so focused on George W Bush's plans to attack Iraq that little notice has been taken of the fact that the global economic crisis is getting worse. Take the three biggest economies – the US, Japan and Germany.

The British economy: Sustainable or sluggish?


AMID NEW Labour's long and growing list of crimes and failures, the government's defenders constantly cite one factor in its favour-the allegedly strong state of the economy.

Shakes in the Middle East


ONE MOMENT summed up for me the enormous tensions that George W Bush's administration is creating with its support for Ariel Sharon's reign of terror in the Palestinian Occupied Territories. US Secretary of State Colin Powell spent a week dawdling around the world before arriving in Israel on his supposed "peace mission".

Why Bush is worried


The Guardian last Saturday tried to explain the decision by George W Bush and his advisers to reverse their previous policy and demand that Ariel Sharon pull Israeli troops out of the West Bank:

Bit player's hollow boast


TONY BLAIR was off swanking at the World Economic Forum at Davos in Switzerland last week. He lectured European business and political leaders that they needed to copy the flexible, free - market model offered by British and US capitalism. "Does Europe continue with the old social model, that has an attitude to social legislation rooted in the 60s and 70s, or does it recognise that the new economy demands a redirection of European economic policy for the future?" Blair asked.

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