The pseudonymous author of this memoir, Winston Smith, chose the moniker because of the maddening bureaucracy within which he worked. His blog, “Winston Smith—Working With the Underclass,” won an Orwell Prize for chronicling the labyrinthine, dysfunctional horror show that had become the British welfare state. And the name fit, conjuring up images of 1984 and the crushing toll the various ministries of the nation-state take on those caught up in their cogs.Read more
Winston Churchill titled the final volume of his World War I memoir The Unknown War. The topic of that volume was the Eastern front, but the title could just as well have described the Great War against the Ottoman Empire in Mesopotamia (the present Iraq) from 1914 until 1918, and its aftermath. While at the time considered a sideshow of the Great War, the British invasion of Mesopotamia was to have far-reaching geopolitical and strategic consequences.Read more
London—Trying to return to Hackney, five minutes from the heart of the protests, from vacation on the night the rioting was at its fiercest provided an insight into the carnage engulfing London. The city had been transformed into a kind of Alan Moore dystopia. Sirens were deafening, with bright lights blinding. Train operators announced gravely that there had been “civil unrest” across London, and that some areas of the city were no longer safe.Read more
The riots in the United Kingdom continue for a fourth straight day. On Tuesday, Londoners awoke to torched cars and street scuffles in Ealing, police horses lining up in Lewisham, and stores and residences in flames in Tottenham. Prosperous boroughs in the capital now resemble war zones, as mobs continue to overwhelm police and loot stores. In the last twenty-four hours, disorder has also spread to cities across England, including Birmingham, Liverpool, Bristol, and Nottingham.Read more
The Henry Jackson Society yesterday released an important report titled, “The Tipping Point: British National and the UK’s Future World Role.” The report is written by sitting Tory MP Bernard Jenkin and HJS director of global security George Grant.Read more
The news has flown a bit under the radar here in the United States, for understandable reasons; but the results earlier this week of the Scottish parliament elections are historic. Whether this is good or bad history, of course, remains to be seen. For the first time, and much against the odds and recent opinion polls, Alex Salmond's Scottish Nationalist Party has won an absolute majority in the Edinburgh parliament--something that the Hollyrood system was designed to prevent, and which now puts the future of the United Kingdom itself in jeopardy. Let me explain.Read more
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