Israel’s hawks can dodge blame for this day of violence

The condemnations are striking but still they ring hollow. Binyamin Netanyahu denounced the arson attack by Jewish settlers on the West Bank home of the Dawabsha family, in which Ali Saad, a baby just 18 months old, was burned to death, as an “act of terrorism in every respect”. Netanyahu was joined by Naftali Bennett, the leader of the ultra-nationalist Jewish Home party, which is close to being the political wing of the settlers’ movement. Bennett described the murder as a “horrendous act of terror”. The defence minister, the army, they all condemned this heinous crime.

Published by: The Guardian

Labour must learn to speak human, whatever its policies

Long before Labour lost the election, it lost the war of metaphor. The origins of the defeat go back at least to the long summer of 2010, when the Conservatives returned to power and promptly took control of the national conversation. Instantly they unleashed a series of simple metaphors to explain what had just happened, and the roles they and the Labour party had played in the story. The simplest and most important, repeated for years to come, was: “We’re clearing up the mess we inherited.”

Published by: The Guardian

Three-minute analysis: Alexis Tsipras has been an abysmal failure for Greece – video

Greece has come to an agreement with its European creditors that will allow it to stay within the eurozone – at a heavy cost. Columnist Jonathan Freedland and economics editor Larry Elliott discuss the late-night deal that the Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras has agreed to – one that heaps further austerity on his country's economy and appears less favourable than what was previously on offer Continue reading...

Published by: The Guardian

There are limits to our empathy – and George Osborne knows it

Perhaps it’s unwise to admit it, but one of the challenges during a budget speech is to stop your mind from wandering. Even an address of astonishing political audacity – as George Osborne’s was – has its longueurs, its moments when the stats are coming in such a blizzard, the borrowing projections merging with the annual growth percentages, that the brain, briefly blinded, looks elsewhere.

Published by: The Guardian

After Tunisia, Kuwait and France we should not be afraid to call evil by its name

In France, in Tunisia, in Kuwait – horror upon horror, in a single day. It played out like some kind of gruesome auction, each atrocity bidding against the others for our appalled attention. The opening offer came near Lyon, where a factory was attacked and, more shocking, a severed head was found on top of a gate, and a decapitated body nearby. The French president said the corpse had been inscribed with a message.

Published by: The Guardian