Radiohead's new album has caused a stir in the music press. Radiohead are immensely popular. Hail To The Thief sold over 60,000 copies in Britain in the first two days of its release. They are also highly political. Lead singer Thom Yorke denounced the war on Iraq. The band support campaigns against Third World debt and in defence of asylum seekers.
THIS YEAR is the hundredth anniversary of the birth of the writer and socialist George Orwell. BBC2 is showing documentary - drama George Orwell: A Life in Pictures this Saturday, which charts both his artistic and political development. The most intriguing question about Orwell is how an Eton schoolboy went on to become perhaps the greatest critic of class privilege and tyranny writing in the English language.
WITH ITS slick cover design, Mark Curtis's book looks like a blockbuster. It deserves to be one. The story of the terrorist actions carried out by the British state is scarier and more gripping than any thriller.
THE GUARDIAN has called its new book on the war against Iraq The War We Could Not Stop. The title reflects the desire of millions of people to stop the war and their anger when the mightiest military power in the world unleashed its devastation on a poor and oppressed people.
To Kill a King is an interesting new film about the English Revolution in the mid 17th century. A revolt, led by parliament, broke out against the tyranny of Charles I's regime in 1642. After years of civil war and attempts to compromise broke down, revolt became a full-blooded revolution.
THE FIRST World War was the most important event of the 20th century. From its four years of mud and mass slaughter the world we live in emerged. In 1964 the BBC produced a 26-part series entitled The Great War. It is now being repeated on BBC2 on Saturday nights.
GUY BURGESS, Donald Maclean, Kim Philby and Anthony Blunt were Britain's most notorious and successful 20th century spies. Their lives are depicted in the watchable BBC2 drama Cambridge Spies, a four-part series starting on Friday of this week.
NINA SIMONE, one of the greatest musicians of the 20th century, died two weeks ago at the age of 70. One of her best known songs, "My Baby Just Cares For Me", was a hit in 1987 after it was used to advertise Chanel No 5 perfume.
Marxist Theory After Trotsky Tony Cliff £12.99 (introductory offer) Bookmarks
THE NEXT time you find yourself shouting at the lies and propaganda on our TV screens, why not give yourself a break and get out one of the excellent videos currently available?
MEDIA REPORTS have repeated phrases from the US and British governments designed to con us into thinking this is a "humanitarian" war. But they don't want to admit the murky origins of some of those phrases. Obliterating Iraq is really about "fighting the battle for the hearts and minds of Iraqi people", we are told. Both the British and the US are well used to saying this about their dirty wars of occupation.
The last night London burned George Binette, £5
In this world Michael Winterbottom
WAR, TERRITORIAL conquest, violence. Nothing we can do about that mate, it's human nature. That stock pub argument sums up the BBC's new Walking with Cavemen series on human evolution. The first episode looked at one of earliest apes to walk on two legs, a small animal called Australopithecus afarensis.
"THE WORLD is becoming a more frightening place." Few would disagree with Alex Callinicos's assertion in his new book, An Anti-Capitalist Manifesto (Polity, £12.50). And the challenge he poses: "What do we do about it?" is a question that will have been asked by everyone in the anti-war movement and the anti-capitalist movement from which it grew.
THE CLASH OF FUNDAMENTALISMS Tariq Ali, Verso (£10)
ANTI-IMPERIALISM: A Guide for the Movement (Bookmarks, £10) is a new book which critically analyses key aspects of imperialism. It begins with an excellent introduction from Tariq Ali and continues with articles on oil and imperialism, racism, nuclear weapons, civil liberties and much more.
MRS EXECUTIONER Bush decided to give her husband a break from organising mass murder by having a nice poetry reading at the White House two weeks ago. Sadly for her, every single one of the poets she invited refused to attend in protest at Bush's war madness.
ONE IMPORTANT product of the worldwide anti-capitalist movement is that information is available as never before about events thousands of miles away. A new video, Un altro modo e' posibile...in Venezuela (Venezuela, another way is possible), is an excellent example of this.
ON SATURDAY 15 February democracy came onto the streets to demonstrate against war and barbarism. The demos are part of a process where politics has become so generalised that a casual conversation about the weather becomes a full blown discussion about the lies and deceits of George Bush. Old-timers start to look for comparable events, to explain, in the words of Marvin Gaye, "What's Going On".