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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The revival of ‘The Absence of War’, starring Reece Dinsdale (left), has as many lessons for Labour

Absence of War, theatre review: Revival of David Hare's play is a history lesson for Ed Miliband - forget the economy, unleash ideals

It makes you pointlessly wonder whether Neil Kinnock, unbound and 20 years younger, wouldn't have been a pretty good fit for 2015

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: The only way is Ukip as fresh-faced Nigel Farage plays matinee idol

The choice of Canvey Island’s Movie Starr cinema for Nigel Farage’s first big speech of the year was no accident. For, if not exactly a Hollywood beefcake, this was the sleek new Farage, lean and meaningful after his “dry January”.

Tensions: Huwwara checkpoint in the West Bank city of Nablus

Between River and Sea, Encounters in Israel and Palestine by Dervla Murphy, book review

The travel writer's take on Israel and Palestine is flawed but valuable

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Tory don't-tell policy holds over 'dodgy donors' allegedly linked to HSBC scandal

Whether David Cameron’s contacts, or non-contacts, with the former HSBC chairman Lord (Stephen) Green before he was appointed a minister were a classic case of “don’t ask, don’t tell” remained less than clear after today’s notably abusive PMQs.

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Let them eat chocolate… and give everyone a pay rise while you're at it

It’s not easy to trump top politicians – David Cameron, Nick Clegg, Ed Balls, et al. But the man from Hotel Chocolat, virtuoso extraordinaire of the higher-brand development speak, managed it.

Treasury minister David Gauke has claimed it is morally wrong to pay tradesmen in cash

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Question evasion and a tax blame game

Understandably Gauke tried to lay the blame on Labour

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Far away, up in the clouds, in a land where everyone's happy... the Lib Dems launch their economic policy

Nick Clegg and Danny  Alexander are going up in the world. Fifty-two floors up, in fact. Presumably to underline Clegg’s theme that for the Lib Dems, as opposed to the Tories, “austerity is a means to an end and not an end in itself – and the end is in sight”. They chose the  notably unaustere Gong Bar at the Shard’s Shangri-La Hotel to launch their economic policy.

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Perhaps Sir John Chilcot needs an anger management course - not to control his rage but to let it out

Maybe it’s because once a civil servant, always a civil servant. Maybe it’s because in Northern Ireland he had so much to do with some of the world’s more irate politicians. But Sir John Chilcot is so damned measured. Perhaps he needs an anger management course – not to control his rage but to let it out. Because it seemed he had something to be cross about. As, to be fair, in his unimpassioned way, he managed to make clear.

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: William Hague gives us a taste of what we'll be missing when he is gone

William Hague is a witty – even sparkling – speaker who has delighted audiences since his appearance as a precocious 16-year-old at a Tory conference during the Thatcher years. So today he had a last laugh by making a speech on English devolution of enervating, narcotic tedium. And doing it at a Westminster hang-out optimistically named “The Ideas Space” in front of a big billboard bearing the slogan “A Fair United Kingdom”. AFUK may be a more benign acronym than the sinister-sounding EVEL (English Votes for English Laws) but it’s possibly more open to misinterpretation.

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Calculating Cameron does his sums in the margins

Asked yesterday at Kingsmead School, in Enfield, by the man from 5 News what “nine eights” were, David Cameron decided to pass.

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