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Why aren’t we giving Ukraine what it needs?

When you visit the rehabilitation centres for those Ukrainian soldiers who have received life-changing injuries, you swiftly learn how to deal with the shock of what you see. You don’t flinch or look away; of course not. You learn the habit of the skilled doctors and nurses and physiotherapists – of concentrating not on the

How I got to know Westminster’s ‘Chinese agent’

On Monday, I was surprised to discover a photo of myself in the papers next to a parliamentary researcher who had been arrested on suspicion of being a ‘Chinese agent’. The photo was taken in February at a panel in parliament entitled ‘Defeating the dictators’. The man and I are both twentysomething China watchers who

How ITN used NDAs to silence staff

One of the aims of journalism is to identify injustice and hold the powerful to account, so it’s odd that ITN – which makes news for Channel 4, Channel 5 and ITV – remains so unwilling to examine its own wrongdoing. Women who work for ITN have tried to report harassment and discrimination, but soon

Britain is now a nation of shoplifters

I was a teenage shoplifter. I had a good run at it, from 12 to 14, and found it as addictive as any drug: the anticipation, the antsiness, the sharp stab of joy on completion. But all it took was getting caught, spending an hour in a police cell before being grimly collected and yelled

The arts world wants Labour

A pang of melancholy as I detach the Royal Albert Hall pass from my BBC lanyard. I had a similar feeling late on Saturday night as I watched our team of engineers start to take down the hundreds of microphones that have enabled us to broadcast the Proms live each night on Radio 3. It

Our prisons are in crisis

Just as the drama of the escape and recapture of Daniel Khalife settled down, HMP Wandsworth returned to more routine problems. On Sunday, another prisoner was hospitalised, having been stabbed by a fellow inmate. Quality of staff is critical. The best officers have an intuitive sense that something is going on This sort of violence

Notes on...

The greatest – and strangest – prison breaks in history

Poor old Daniel Khalife. He must have thought his exit from HMP Wandsworth, hidden underneath a delivery van, would win ‘Most Creative Prison Escape of the Week’. But actually that title had already been nabbed by Danelo Cavalcante, who stood in a narrow external passageway at Pennsylvania’s Chester County prison, leaned forward so his hands