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How China Colluded with the West in the Rise of Osama Bin Laden

Roger Hardy: International terrorism, 2 March 2000

Unholy Wars: Afghanistan, America and International Terrorism 
by John Cooley.
Pluto, 276 pp., £20, June 1999, 0 7453 1328 0
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... best friends in the Middle East, were furious at what they saw as the gesture politics of Bill Clinton and his adjutant Tony Blair. Most Saudis despise Saddam Hussein, but this does not automatically translate – as many in Washington seem to believe – into an uncritical pro-Americanism. On the contrary, Saudi Arabia, characterised by ...

The Kid Who Talked Too Much and Became President

David Simpson: Clinton on Clinton, 23 September 2004

My Life 
by Bill Clinton.
Hutchinson, 957 pp., £25, June 2004, 0 09 179527 3
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... Let me establish my credentials. On page 320, Bill Clinton recalls a happy time in Montana in 1985 watching ‘marmosets scramble around above the snow line’ (he means marmots). And on page 808 (we’re up to 1998), he identifies the secretary of state for Northern Ireland as Mo Mowlan (for Mowlam). In other words, I have read My Life, all of it, closely enough to catch two slips of somebody’s pen, probably Clinton’s own ...

North Korea’s Bomb

Norman Dombey, 2 February 2017

... to find a new direction, in contrast with Obama and, the record suggests, with the road Hillary Clinton would likely have pursued?Ten years ago, when Iran was the focus of the big powers’ nuclear concerns, I suggested that a deal might be possible whereby ‘Iran would be allowed limited enrichment rights (say, up to 5 per cent enrichment), together with ...

The Boss Has Gone Crazy

Uri Avnery: Bush eyes up the Middle East, 6 January 2005

... would not dare to propose the evacuation of the dozens of settlements there. In his autobiography, Bill Clinton recounts what happened last time peace with Syria was on the agenda. Barak asked Clinton to call a conference. Clinton, eager for a foreign policy success, readily ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: TV Lit, 15 November 2001

... Castle, the Prime Minister in the novel, ‘is’ Tony Blair, and President Riley ‘is’ Bill Clinton (the novel’s set in 1999). In Lawson’s imaginings, the President’s priapism extends far beyond Monicagate: Riley has been accused of sexually assaulting the wife of the President of Nigeria. The royal family get to be ...

Short Cuts

John Sturrock: John Reid tries to out-Blunkett Blunkett, 2 November 2006

... still have the stomach for that event wanted to hear. Odd in the circumstances that the party flew Bill Clinton over to address it when they should clearly have had Al Gonzales, the creepily evasive successor to John Ashcroft as George W.’s attorney-general, who in the celebrated ‘Bybee memo’ four years ago suggested that an American president, aka ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Politicians’ Spouses, 11 June 2009

... to have been lying; and not only because his coy euphemisms give him rather more wriggle-room than Bill Clinton allowed himself with his bald statement that he did not have sexual relations with that woman. Some relief from the saga of the Berlusconi divorce was briefly on offer thanks to the Italian-born first lady of France, and the nude portrait of her ...

The Right Stuff

Alan Ryan, 24 November 1994

The Principle of Duty 
by David Selbourne.
Sinclair-Stevenson, 288 pp., £17.99, June 1994, 1 85619 474 4
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... Times, the Mail on Sunday hailed it as a blast of the trumpet against the yobbo Left; President Clinton bought a copy when he visited Oxford in June, John Patten praised it, the Home Secretary says Selbourne has proved conclusively that Tony Blair cannot turn the Labour Party into a ‘civic’ party, and so, more or less endlessly, on. What has got into ...

Short Cuts

Christian Lorentzen: The Weiner Trilogy, 29 August 2013

... Congress and exited the scene with his pregnant wife – Huma Abedin, a glamorous aide to Hillary Clinton – bound for therapy, ante-natal classes and lucrative consultancies in the private sector. Twenty-three months passed before we got the sequel: splashed across the cover of the New York Times Magazine, the happy couple are back for more; inside, for ...

Feeling Right

Will Woodward: The Iowa Straw Poll, 16 September 1999

... About sixty of us, a handful of journalists, but mostly Sherman Hill residents, have come to see Bill Bradley, the former New Jersey senator, New York Knicks professional basketball star and Rhodes scholar who wants the Democrats’ nomination for President of the United States. Jack Hatch, once an Iowa state representative, now some kind of consultant, is ...

Short Cuts

Pooja Bhatia: After the Assassination, 29 July 2021

... and muscular intervention’. A clip surfaced of Joe Biden in 1994 arguing against the Clinton administration’s proposed humanitarian action in Haiti. If the country ‘just quietly sunk [sic] into the Caribbean’, he said, ‘or rose up three hundred feet, it wouldn’t matter a whole lot in terms of our interest’. Americans have ...

The War on Tax

Corey Robin: Downgrading Obama, 25 August 2011

... trillion budget surplus. Many believed that if the country merely continued on the path set by Bill Clinton, the national debt, then $5.7 trillion, would be eliminated by the end of the decade. Bush chose a different way. He cut taxes, reducing revenues by $1.8 trillion. He declared a general war on terror and waged two specific wars. Financed ...

Short Cuts

Christian Lorentzen: Tom Cotton, 9 April 2015

... of international law.’ The Cotton letter undermined another Republican’s attempt to pass a bill requiring the Senate’s consent to any nuclear deal with Iran. Headlines called the signatories ‘traitors’, and 300,000 people signed a petition to have them prosecuted under the Logan Act, a 1799 law that bars unauthorised citizens from negotiating ...

Trump: Some Numbers

R.W. Johnson, 3 November 2016

... for a Mitt Romney or a John McCain, especially against such an unpopular candidate as Hillary Clinton. A second point: when Lyndon Johnson passed the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act in 1965 he said with regret that the Democrats would lose the South for a generation. His judgment proved correct. A generation on, in 2008 and 2012, the US ...

The Most Eligible Bachelor on the Planet

Thomas Jones: ‘The President is Missing’, 5 July 2018

The President Is Missing 
by Bill Clinton and James Patterson.
Century, 513 pp., £20, June 2018, 978 1 78089 839 1
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... a daughter. So he’s a curious – you could almost say implausible – mix of John McCain and Bill Clinton, though a few decades younger than either of them. According to the conventions of stories about fictional presidents, the novel strives to maintain the appearance of bipartisanship; Duncan never tells us which party he belongs to, but it’s ...

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