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{ Author Archives }

Named Persons

I have to confess to a secret vice: I enjoy reading law reports. My favourites are the Supreme Court judgments, but even the lowly Commercial Court can provide some enjoyable reading. I am not quite sure why I read them. Partly it is because many judges write beautifully clear English, partly because I quite enjoy […]

Box Office Phil

[photo from government website] Hammond’s ironic nickname is because his boring interviews are guaranteed not to contain unpleasant surprises, witness this extract from his recent Conference speech: Successful negotiation with the EU27 will demand patience, experience, meticulous planning and steely resolution. And I know of no-one better-equipped to lead us through those negotiations than our […]

Spoilt brats

Homage a Melanie Phllips (65), commentator. My father’s father – who, according to family mythology, was given the name Phillips because the immigration officer couldn’t pronounce his Polish name – would stand on the street corner every week in the often unrealised hope of being selected for work. [From her “Guardian Angel: My story, my […]

Quick wins

[George Joffe lecturing in Saudi Arabia in April 2016] Q63 [Crispin Blunt, Tory chairman] … Sticking with Libya, is it also a fact that there has been a lack of investment in our foreign policy apparatus, in the sense that we simply do not know what is happening on the ground? … [George Joffe, Kings […]

Charles Judson Harwood Jr (1942-2013)

I first heard of Charles Harwood two and a half years ago when I was researching the downing of Iran Air flight 655. Unknown to me, he was already dead at that point. He had a blog on ntlworld.com. NTL Inc was a cable television company. Barclay Knapp had set up CableTel in 1993 following […]