To prevent another Christchurch we must confront the right’s hate preachers

There are coping strategies for dealing with terrorism and the feeling it is meant to induce, namely terror. One is to tell yourself, it won’t happen to me. Following the massacre of 49 people at prayer in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, many non-Muslims might be saying to themselves, if only in a guilty whisper, “I am not Muslim, I’ll be OK.” Another strategy is to tell yourself, it won’t happen here. That’s hard, though, for if it can happen in a country that has long seen itself as a serene haven, distant from a turbulent world, then it can surely happen anywhere. And still others may fall back on that perennial reassurance: this was just one deranged individual.

Theresa May has finally got the Brexiters where she wants them

MPs had the chance to take back control of Brexit – wresting this tortured process from a weak, flailing and moribund government – and they ducked it. Sure, it was by the narrowest of margins, losing by just two votes, 312 to 314, but MPs passed up the opportunity to take charge and say, at long last, what kind of Brexit they want. They preferred instead to grant Theresa May yet another lifeline for her own deal – which, incredibly, will come back for a third meaningful vote on Tuesday.

Theresa May has finally got the Brexiters where she wants them

MPs had the chance to take back control of Brexit – wresting this tortured process from a weak, flailing and moribund government – and they ducked it. Sure, it was by the narrowest of margins, losing by just two votes, 312 to 314, but MPs passed up the opportunity to take charge and say, at long last, what kind of Brexit they want. They preferred instead to grant Theresa May yet another lifeline for her own deal – which, incredibly, will come back for a third meaningful vote on Tuesday.

The Conservatives have left Britain with no real government

It’s been true for a while that the Conservative party has become fundamentally ungovernable, its warring factions so far apart it’s all but impossible to have them marching in the same direction, at least when it comes to Europe. It’s a condition that afflicted the Tories under Theresa May’s predecessors, spelling doom for David Cameron, John Major and Margaret Thatcher. But today Britain has to face a condition that is new: not only are the Conservatives ungovernable but, under the Tories, the country itself is ungoverned. Functionally, the United Kingdom currently lacks a government.

Anti-vaxxers, the Momo challenge … why lies spread faster than facts

With Trump making six false claims a day and bogus Brexit claims spreading, we live in a disorienting post-truth era. It all began with the David Irving trial, writes Jonathan Freedland

The queasiness keeps coming back, a very specific malady that I thought I’d put behind me nearly 20 years ago. But each time I read about, say, the bogus version of the Lisbon treaty that’s gone viral, or the “malicious hoax” of the Momo challenge, or the rise and rise of the anti-vaxxer movement, the symptoms return, stronger than ever.

If asked by a doctor to describe the sensation, I’d say it feels as if the ground beneath my feet is slipping away, that there is nothing firm or solid to stand on. What triggers it are lies, usually in the public sphere, told by those with power and authority. And it’s not just any old lie, but rather the lie that is smirkingly cavalier in its disregard for the difference between truth and falsehood, that suggests you can never really tell the difference between the two and that it doesn’t matter anyway.

Irving was saying we can’t trust anything – not even thousands of witnesses. Where did that leave what we call history?

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We now know the great prize of Brexit: becoming Trump’s prey

Shall we take a gentle amble down memory lane, a nostalgic trip back to the heady days of the referendum campaign of 2016? So many sweet promises were murmured into our ear, it can be hard to remember them all. No talk then of shelling out £33m to settle a legal case with Eurotunnel or ferry contracts for companies with no ferries, or spending billions to prepare for the cataclysm of a no-deal departure. No, back then it was all cash bonanzas of £350m a week and assurances that Brexit would be smooth and seamless – the Europeans needed us more than we needed them, after all – so that, by the time 23 June 2016 came around, voting leave seemed like a painless, risk-free option. Not only was there nothing to lose, there was so much to gain. And top of the list was a big, shiny trade deal with the United States of America.