The price of Vietnam being allowed to come out of isolation was the destruction of its health services
By John Pilger - 27 November 12:00

In reporting Bill Clinton's visit to Vietnam, the BBC's diplomatic correspondent declared that what the Vietnamese needed was "more economic growth". The question begged: why send a reporter all the way to Hanoi when the British ambassador would have happily propagated this line?

If I were ruler of the world, my popularity rating would be 63.3 per cent
By Lauren Booth - 27 November 12:00

''Listen, kiddo, good news," began my agent in an unexpectedly excited voice. These days, he sounds barely civil when we speak: in marketing terms, a female client recovering from childbirth is about as useful as a grounded Concorde.

Paul Routledge
By Paul Routledge - 27 November 12:00

Robin Cook's ill-tempered attack on Gordon Brown - leaked authoritatively to the Sunday Torygraph, whatever the Foreign Secretary says by way of denial - is causing a bit of a stir.

Why this girl's heart is always in the office
By Cristina Odone - 27 November 12:00

For two years, I worked as the Daily Telegraph's television critic. I had to stay inside all day, glued to my armchair and the box.

I enjoyed Billy Elliot. It was lovely and humane, and a lot like many other films I've seen
By Sean French - 27 November 12:00

Once a new art form is invented and established, an infrastructure develops to maintain it: a college to train people to do it, buildings dedicated to it, professional guilds, awards, grants. But, like anything else, art forms can become defunct.

To black footballers, I say: walk off if fans abuse you
By Darcus Howe - 27 November 12:00

I once toyed with being a sports journalist. I couldn't quite penetrate the cricket mafia, but I got one or two pieces on athletics in the Sunday Times. Then came the biggie: an assignment to follow two black players who had burst on to the scene at Millwall.

Paul Routledge
By Paul Routledge - 20 November 12:00

The hunt is on for the mole who leaked "minutes" of the 1997 Cabinet meeting that gave the go-ahead for the disastrous Dome.

Childhood has gone completely out of fashion
By Cristina Odone - 20 November 12:00

I was walking down the King's Road the other day, past window displays of silver lycra bodices and tight black leather jeans, and wondering who would dare expose their midriff and thighs so blatantly, when the answers materialised beside me.

I'm no longer Marley Marvo the clown, but the PM still won't be pictured with me
By Lauren Booth - 20 November 12:00

Poor Paula Yates - her death has been on my mind a lot recently. First, because I met her; and second, because I'm beginning to realise that we occupy the same space in the mind of some journalists.

Taking time
By Patricia Holland - 20 November 12:00

Profile - Patricia Holland celebrates a career documenting real life

Memories of prison: stale food and bad smells
By Darcus Howe - 20 November 12:00

I begin a new series with Channel 4 in the next couple of days. It is titled Freedom and will be broadcast as three one-hour documentaries next year.

This year, the march past on Remembrance Day included ex-evacuees. But what do we owe them?
By Sean French - 20 November 12:00

When I was an avid reader of Biggles, in the late Sixties, I used to try to calculate Biggles's age, because I wanted to know if it was possible that he was still alive.

Caribbean ministers have their hands in the till
By Darcus Howe - 13 November 12:00

Brian Lara has been named in the deep scandal that has engulfed cricket. The Indians have suspended those named in the investigation; the Pakistanis, less eager, have fined some of their players.

When the state and its vested interests are guilty of killing, those responsible are covered in a protective fog
By John Pilger - 13 November 12:00

It is difficult to forget the courage of Helen Jeffries speaking on television about her 14-year-old daughter Zoe, who lay stricken beside her with vCJD and died a few days later. She accurately described Zoe's imminent death as murder.

As a child, I saw my mother's boyfriend regularly smash her face and body
By Lauren Booth - 13 November 12:00

DC Kevin Shapland, the co-ordinator for the Metropolitan Police's community safety units, got in touch with me after I wrote an article on the improvements in local police attitudes to assaults on and abuse of women. He wanted to enlist my help to "support" his force's latest "initiatives".

Paul Routledge
By Paul Routledge - 13 November 12:00

Nobody begrudges Peter Mandelson his new personal spin-doctor. He is Peter "Rough" Diamond, a 23-old-public relations chappie associated with Progress or one of those other ersatz new Labour publications, although I don't expect he will be ringing me very often.

The modern dictionary of quotations is like a hospital for jokes that have had their funny bits amputated
By Sean French - 13 November 12:00

I don't usually pay compliments to my wife, Nicci Gerrard, in this column. That's an understatement. I never have. Not once. But last weekend, she achieved something that deserves acknowledgement.

Britain's Mrs Robinson will smack your bottom very hard
By Cristina Odone - 13 November 12:00

The woman in black stands, stiff and stony-faced, fixing her charges with a glare that reduces them to jelly. "John," she barks "you are the weakest link.

Finally, I have got to the end of Lost Illusions, but I took longer to read it than Balzac took to write it
By Sean French - 06 November 12:00

When I was on holiday last week, I finished a book. Not writing one, unfortunately, but reading one. My copy of Balzac's Lost Illusions looks in a wrecked state, as befitting a book that has been taken on holiday three times before being finished.

Middle class blacks no longer hang on the block
By Darcus Howe - 06 November 12:00

For some time now, I have been making comments on the black middle classes. They are becoming more and more vociferous and demanding, but are not as influential as they would like to be.

The New Statesman Profile - Jonathon Porritt
By Hywel Williams - 06 November 12:00

He is our tree hugger in chief, a self-righteous prophet who now finds himself at the centre of thin

It is Have I Got News for You and in the audience Euan Blair is watching me
By Lauren Booth - 06 November 12:00

Giving birth - the deep, tearing contractions and the eventual screaming, bloody act of creation - has ceased to terrify me. Nothing can be as disturbing as the prospect of appearing on Have I Got News for You.

Paul Routledge
By Paul Routledge - 06 November 12:00

If you really want to know what's going on, don't bother with spin-doctors and political advisers. They are usually too young and too stupid. Instead, talk to the Whitehall pool of drivers or Westminster bar staff.

Stay away from my God, you posturing politicians!
By Cristina Odone - 06 November 12:00

We're all atheists now, the Archbishop of Canterbury tells us.

Fear of the tabloid press creates strange drinking partners
By Lauren Booth - 30 October 12:00

It dawned on me this week - as I clapped and cheered well-known bands, shoulder to shoulder with Chrissie Hynde and Annie Lennox - that I now share the Millbank tendency's fear that tape recorders lurk everywhere except the Groucho Club.

Paul Routledge
By Paul Routledge - 30 October 12:00

Look, you will just have to be understanding about this, because sport is a no-have-been-there area for me. But it goes something like this. The government is setting up a body to look after the interests of football fans.

Tony the Great has his own scheming Potemkin
By Cristina Odone - 30 October 12:00

History repeats itself, the ancient Greek historian Thucydides wrote. And a recent biography of an 18th-century Russian general bears this out.

We are more British than we realise
By Darcus Howe - 30 October 12:00

I was at a New Statesman-sponsored meeting at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, yet another attempt to make good the hugely flawed Runnymede Trust report on the future of multi-ethnic Britain.

The New Statesman Profile - Damian Green
By Jackie Ashley - 30 October 12:00

Pro-Europe pro-green and pro-life, he is the last of the Tory wets. He is also a star to watch. Dami

The west has its reasons for validating Israel's violence; human rights are not an issue
By John Pilger - 30 October 12:00

Richard Falk, professor of international relations at Cornell, once wrote that western foreign policy was formulated "through a self-righteous, one-way moral/legal screen [with] positive images of western values and innocence portrayed as threatened, validating a campaign of unrestricted politic