Donald MacIntyre

Donald Macintyre writes political sketches for The Independent, having been Jerusalem correspondent since 2004, covering Israel and the Occupied Territories, as well as travelling for the paper to Iraq, Turkey, Jordan, Libya and Egypt.

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Letter from the Political Correspondent: Party point-scoring at PMQs is turning public off politics

Since it was the last Prime Minister’s Questions of this parliament, it was appropriate that it was such a newsmaker. David Cameron’s announcement from the dispatch box that he was ruling out any increase in VAT was probably the biggest PMQs bombshell since 1998, when the Tory Opposition Leader William Hague stunned MPs by revealing – and then rejecting — the deal he had only just heard had been cooked up between his Lords Leader Lord Cranborne and Tony Blair on reform of the Upper House. Which is itself a reminder how little of real substance usually emerges from the weekly joust.

In 1989, Thatcher said she would fight one more term

How Thatcher and Blair tried to set limit to leadership – and what ensued

Lesson of history is it may invite ‘lame duck’ charge

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a Likud party meeting in Or Yehuda near Tel Aviv, Israel, Monday, March 16, 2015

Israel election: A Benjamin Netanyhahu victory might actually boost the anti-occupation movement

The Israeli PM has warned that Likud's defeat would result in land being returned to Palestine, and that it would all be part of a global conspiracy against him

Palestinians sit on a couch as they return to the remains of their house, which witnesses said was destroyed in an Israeli offensive in Gaza City

Method and Madness: The hidden story of Israel’s assaults on Gaza by Norman G Finkelstein, book review: The case against Israel

Fierce polemic against Israel’s actions in Gaza calls for non-violent resistance

Andrew Mitchell, accompanied by his wife Sharon, arrives at the Royal Courts of Justice in London this week (AP)

Plebs, public school boys and politics: class war breaks out in Court 13

The Andrew Mitchell libel trial shows how far Britain’s divided society has come – and how much further it has to go

Ibrahim Kattab, 6, crys out as his mother, Khetam, 39, and sister, Nermine, 3, watch over him, in Shifa Hospital, Gaza city. Ibrahim and his brother, Wasim, were hit by shrapnel

Gaza conflict: As Israel and Hamas both claim victory, hundreds of children suffer life-changing injuries

Ibrahim Khattab, nine, unwrapped a yellow plastic toy bus at Shifa Hospital yesterday, while his mother sadly recalled the trivial argument he had with his older brother before they were splattered with shrapnel from an Israeli missile.

Cursed Victory by Ahron Bregman, book review: A tragedy for Israelis as well as Palestinians

The "cursed victory" of Ahron Bregman's title is Israel's triumph over the armies of Egypt, Jordan and Syria in the 1967 Six Day War, one that unexpectedly left it in control of the Sinai peninsula, the Syrian Golan heights, Gaza, the West Bank, and Arab East Jerusalem.

Book review: The Burden Of The Desert by Justin Huggler

Anyone who reported from Iraq during 2003 and 2004 will immediately recognise the rapidly changing – and deteriorating – atmosphere conjured in Justin Huggler’s relentlessly gripping first novel. But few would have been able retrospectively to evoke in such human detail how the hopes initially generated by the fall of Saddam steadily unravelled as the country descended into fear and insurgency.

The Sketch: General Gove discovers the brotherhood of man

What are so-called Topical Questions for if not to address the great controversies of the day?

Time honoured: Israeli PM revels in his star status

Unsurprsingly, delighted aides to the Prime Minister distributed the article to Israeli journalists

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Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine