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When is it in the public interest to disclose the details of a TLA’s sexual relationships? My latest column for the bumper print edition of Standpoint. http://bit.ly/iTetSa

 

Read my article on Jewish Ideas Daily, One Woman Army, about Elena Bonner, who died last week aged 88. It describes my meeting in 1991 with the widow of Andrei Sakharov, the Soviet scientist and dissident, and provides a portrait of this indomitable campaigner for human rights.

The Point would like to alert Standpoint readers to a new publisher, Notting Hill Editions, and its online journal, dedicated to the art of the essay. Sharing Standpoint‘s aim to provide its discerning readers with unashamedly highbrow pieces in an era characterised by an ethos of instant throwaway communication, Notting Hill Editions — edited by deputy books editor of the Independent, Lucasta Miller — launched yesterday with work from authors Roland Barthes and Georges Perec.

Belatedly, the Prime Minister has caught up with the announcement I made on March 24 by confirming that Jonathan Sumption QC and Sir Nicholas Wilson will be appointed to the Supreme Court.

The loss of a figurehead as iconic as Osama bin Laden will come as a blow to al-Qaeda and its supporters, but is unlikely to fatally undermine the movement.

Reproduced below is my latest analysis for the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation, King’s College, London.

The revelation that Jonathan Sumption QC will not be taking up his expected appointment to the Supreme Court until he has a window in his diary has infuriated his future colleagues.

I understand that five candidates were interviewed for the two vacancies in the UK Supreme Court. They are (in alphabetical order):

It’s fair to say the Quilliam Foundation (later rebranded to “Quilliam”) has not been without its problems since launching in 2008. Since its launch, Quilliam expanded much too quickly, taking on too many staff, and has never stopped to define its remit clearly enough.

British journalists pride themselves on their freedom to write without fear of censorship (but with due regard for good taste and our sometimes draconian libel laws). In a thoughtful posting on his blog, however, the Guardian‘s veteran political commentator Michael White wonders whether he and his fellow writers aren’t being too complacent. He starts out by examining a worrying crackdown on Turkish journalists by the country’s supposedly moderate Islamic government but broadens his argument to look at self-censorship closer to home. Read on to the end for a very honest exposure of the predictable targets that the Guardian‘s fearless writers habitually aim at, and the subjects that are traditionally taboo for them: