Latest Issue: 16 August 2014
16 August 2014
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From the editor's desk

14 August 2014

There has been widespread criticism, entirely justified, of the British Government’s timid and complacent response to the unfolding humanitarian crisis in northern Iraq. This is not to question the bravery of RAF air crew flying missions to drop supplies to the tens of thousands of Yazidi refugees trapped ...

14 August 2014

An Australian couple paid a woman living in Thailand to bear a child for them. In fact she gave birth to twins, one of whom had Down’s syndrome. That child is still with the mother who bore him while the Australian woman has the child’s sibling. This much is agreed: almost all the other facts of the case are disputed.

Previous issues

07 August 2014

The resignation from ministerial office of Baroness (Sayeeda) Warsi has opened up cracks inside Government regarding both its attitude to Israel’s actions in Gaza, and more broadly. She told David Cameron that his Government’s failure to condemn Israel was “morally indefensible”, not least because of the high civilian death toll among Palestinians, including a large number of children, ...

07 August 2014

Opinion polls suggest that the number of Scottish electors who will vote for independence in next month’s referendum falls some way short of a majority. Though the gap between the two sides has closed a little in recent weeks, it still stands at 54 per cent to 40 in favour of remaining in the United Kingdom. Independence campaigners had been hoping that this week’s television debate ...

31 July 2014

Church services are being held all over Europe to commemorate the outbreak of the First World War. For instance, each of the Catholic bishops of England and Wales has pledged himself to say a Requiem Mass for the souls of the departed and for peace, to mark this and other key anniversaries of the four-year conflict.

31 July 2014

Israeli action in Gaza, however justified at the outset, has crossed the line and is proving intolerable to the international community. The death toll of innocent lives, many of them children, cannot be explained or excused. The fact that Hamas’ conduct – firing rockets towards Israeli towns and infiltrating individual terrorists into Israeli territory through tunnels – is outrageous, immoral and appalling, cannot justify Israel acting likewise.

24 July 2014

David Cameron caused consternation among the secular intelligentsia in 2011 when he declared, in a speech to a church audience, “We are a Christian country and we should not be afraid to say so.” The evidence that was subsequently much argued over related almost wholly to domestic policy and the state of public opinion in Britain.

24 July 2014

Few things could be more civilised than life aboard a long-haul airliner: entertainment on tap, food when required, attentive cabin staff, the latest technology to ensure safety and comfort, and all amid the beauty of the sun-split clouds. It is this that makes the sudden disintegration of an aircraft such as MH17, in an instant of extreme violence and bloodshed, ...

17 July 2014

The vote by the Church of England’s governing body to allow women to be ordained as bishops is historic and dramatic, even if it was the logical consequence of the decision by the same body to ordain women as priests made in 1992.

17 July 2014

It is the first duty of any government to defend its citizens against external attack, a principle Israel is entitled to invoke to justify its operations against Hamas in Gaza. Had the IRA started bombarding Wales with rockets across the Irish Sea in the 1970s, Britain would have been bound to react.