The rescue of Norman Kember and his fellow hostages in Baghdad is a tiny glimmer of light in an Iraqi picture that remains uniformly grim. John Reid’s gung-ho remarks on his recent visit to Iraq simply provided further evidence of the defence secretary’s very troubled relationship to reality.
No one should be in any doubt about Tony Blair’s arrogance in saying that god will judge him for invading Iraq. The implication was that he doesn’t care about the judgement of mere mortals such as the rest of us.
Last week didn’t go too badly for Tony Blair. He was able to persuade the House of Commons to approve legislation introducing identity cards and prohibiting the "glorification of terrorism".
You may not have noticed it, but poverty has become history. Or so one has to presume, since at the end of last month the campaigning coalition Make Poverty History (MPH) decided to wind itself up.
It's barely a year since, at his second inauguration, George Bush proclaimed the commitment of the US to an apparently revolutionary programme of spreading democracy worldwide.
It is, of course, utterly hypocritical for George Bush and Tony Blair, both commanding vast nuclear arsenals, to denounce Iran for deciding to restart its uranium enrichment programme. I heard one US neo-con, Frank Gaffney, ranting and raving on the radio the other day about how uniquely evil the Islamic regime in Iran is.
It is just over six years since the great protests in Seattle of November 1999. And it is almost three years since the great anti-war protest of 15 February 2003.
For news junkies like me the Christmas break is the purest hell, an information black hole from which nothing emerges but the queen’s speech or some stupid Today programme poll.
The current debate about torture is an astonishing symptom of how a civilization can regress morally and politically despite the technological advances it may make.
Last week the sixth anniversary of the protests in Seattle passed without much notice. The passage of time has, however, if anything underlined the importance of the challenge that demonstrators mounted to the World Trade Organisation summit on 30 November 1999.
When George Galloway was interviewed on BBC Radio Four’s Today programme a few weeks ago, John Humphreys taunted him with the suggestion that Respect was a single issue party whose issue — the war in Iraq — would have disappeared by the time of the next general election.
I’ve said it before and been wrong — but now I’m pretty confident that the skids really are under Tony Blair.
The Bush administration had a couple of bits of good news recently, at a time when the picture facing it was generally pretty grim.
How much difference a year makes. Next week it will be a year since George Bush finally managed to win the support of a majority of US voters.
One of the disasters that have afflicted different parts of the world in recent months, was Hurricane Stan, which swept southern Mexico and Central America nearly three weeks ago.
The debate over Iraq has shifted significantly over the past few months. The central issue has become the withdrawal of the occupation forces in Iraq.
The hung parliament that emerged from the German federal elections is a serious setback for the forces seeking to impose yet more free market "reforms" on us all.
"Bra wars" was the idiotic way in which even the supposed quality media covered the row over Chinese textile quotas. The real story is about where capitalism is going.
The outcome of talks on the Iraqi "constitution" is very bad news for George Bush.
The sudden death of Robin Cook is a major blow to the Labour Party as it was traditionally conceived, as a party of progressive social reform.