Patrick Cockburn

Patrick Cockburn is an Irish journalist who has been a Middle East correspondent since 1979 for the Financial Times and, presently, The Independent. He was awarded Foreign Commentator of the Year at the 2013 Editorial Intelligence Comment Awards.

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An Iraqi security officer guards a church in Bartala, after Mosul fell

Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

World View: After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything
Kurdish police at the site of a suicide bomb attack in Erbil

Isis extends deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Residents in what was Iraq’s safest city fear an increase in jihadist attacks

Iraqi forces have re-entered the refinery in the northern town of Baiji where retreating Isis fighters are said to have laid booby traps

Isis in Iraq: Baghdad hails the retaking of the Baiji oil refinery as the start of the long fightback against the Islamist militants

But it may not be quite so simple, especially for the civilians caught up in the crossfire, says Patrick Cockburn

Under attack: A shell explodes in Kobani, Syria

War with Isis: Islamic militants have army of 200,000, claims senior Kurdish leader

Exclusive: CIA has hugely underestimated the number of jihadis, who now rule an area the size of Britain
A Kurdish Peshmerga fighter near the town of Makhmour, in northern Iraq

Isis: Iraqi army retakes control of oil refinery town as Kurds stand firm against overstretched Islamic State

Patrick Cockburn reports from Makhmour, the Iraqi town where the tide  may finally be turning in the war against the self-styled Islamic State

Cemil Bayik, leader of the PKK umbrella group, in Iraq in 1991

War against Isis: PKK commander tasked with the defence of Syrian Kurds claims 'we will save Kobani'

Patrick Cockburn ventures deep into the Kandil mountains for a rare audience with the Kurdish guerrilla leader - and hears his defiant message to the Islamists...

Since Isis forces stormed Mosul in June, life in the city has rapidly deteriorated with fear and anger commonplace, according to the many refugees who have fled into Kurdish-controlled Irbil

Isis in Iraq: The brutal reality of life in Mosul under Islamic State - 'We are dying'

For Sunni Arabs still living in fundamentalist-controlled Mosul, life is sometimes mundane, sometimes terrifying as the occupiers seek to impose their unyielding interpretation of Islam

Mourners at a Baghdad funeral vent their anger against Islamic State

War with Isis: The militants will remain until the region's Sunnis feel safe

The US plan of strengthening local tribes is no match for the brutality of the jihadis
Libyan troops clash with Islamic extremists in Benghazi last week

The West is silent as Libya falls into the abyss

World View: In 2011, there was jubilation at Gaddafi's demise. Not any more: the aftermath of foreign intervention is calamitous and bloody
The latest propaganda video presented the hostage John Cantlie as a war reporter

John Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

The use of Mr Cantlie demonstrates once again Isis' skill and originality in conducting a propaganda war

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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game