Russia’s mobilisation will only make Putin’s problems worse

Diners gasped as the riot police thudded the man’s head against the windows of the chic Moscow restaurant. Arrested for demonstrating against mobilisation, it is very likely he will now be sent to fight in Ukraine. Just 12 hours earlier, Vladimir Putin had taken to the podium with a pre-recorded speech to announce partial mobilisation … Read more

Amid Putin’s blustering threats, the West has genuine cause for hope

I’m touching wood as I write, but can you think of anything that is going well for Vladimir Putin? Under his command, the Russian army has just lost not only a conquered territory the size of Wales, but also its aura of invincibility. If it suffers a comparable defeat in the south, the end is … Read more

PayPal’s censorship marks a vicious new phase in the war on free speech

The Labour Party conference opens in Liverpool this weekend and the main attraction will, as always, be the stalls run by volunteers. The passionate, committed and usually humorous activists are always there, selling “never kissed a Tory” T-shirts and Corbyn memorabilia. There will be communist sympathisers, Venezuela apologists and backers of all kinds of lost … Read more

Armenia is being brutalised by its neighbours. If it is defeated, it would be bad news for the West

“The EU is turning to trustworthy energy suppliers. Azerbaijan is one of them,” Ursula von der Leyen declared in July. Over the past week, the EU’s “trustworthy partner” — a phenomenally corrupt hereditary dictatorship in the Caucasus — has slaughtered more than two hundred people in unrelenting attacks on its democratic neighbour Armenia. The carnage … Read more

we must prepare for the war to turn even uglier

Make no mistake: the war in Ukraine just moved up a dangerous gear. Far from turning into the frozen conflict that could have tested the West’s staying power, Ukraine’s recent major counteroffensive has so humiliated Putin that there is every expectation he will now play even uglier than he has already. Ukraine’s success was textbook … Read more

The UK is the beating heart of the free world

The State Funeral for Queen Elizabeth II was a deeply moving farewell to a Monarch with a heartfelt life of service, duty and dedication. The Queen’s seven decades on the throne were selflessly lived for the sake of the British people and the Commonwealth of Nations, with its 56 member countries, stretching from Australia to … Read more

Britain is the envy of the world

A relentless sense that we are hurtling through history is one of the privileges and burdens of the modern age. Yet, with the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth, we experienced something truly extraordinary. A spectacle of such glory has not been witnessed in the UK since at least the late Queen’s coronation in 1953. But … Read more

All the music from the Queen’s funeral – including one or two surprises

The musical portion of the Order of Service for the burial of the late Queen is exactly what one would expect it to be. It is rooted in the traditions of past royal funerals, in a variety of musical styles from Jacobean formality to Edwardian sentiment, with just one very mild whiff of “modern music”. … Read more

The Russian Empire is already falling apart

Some have predicted that Russia will disintegrate in the face of humiliation in Ukraine. Perhaps, but we are already beginning to see signs of the weakening of Moscow’s hold on its “near abroad” – the former Soviet states that have remained under close Russian influence. Domination of Moscow’s erstwhile empire is vital for Putin’s rehabilitation … Read more

The world has entered a dangerous and self-indulgent new Age of Unreason

The twentieth century is now well and truly over. The death of the Queen who presided over the second half of it may come to represent a critical point in history: the moment when what will be understood historically as a golden age of confidence and prosperity came to an end. After the terrible ideological … Read more