Richard Askwith

Richard Askwith is executive editor of the Independent

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Captured soldiers of the Russian 2nd Army after their defeat at the Battle of Tannenberg

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Russia loses an army at the Battle of Tannenberg

For Russians, it was one of the great military disasters: an episode of epic incompetence that spawned at least one literary masterpiece. Richard Askwith reflects on the events in East Prussia in August 1914

The author's lo-tech approach is out of step with a hugely profitable industry

Back to nature: a modest proposal for a runners’ revolution

Recreational running is booming, and a huge industry is booming with it. But have the sport’s simple joys been lost in the race to make money? Richard Askwith challenges the tyranny of Big Running

The Kiss of Mud obstacle in the Tough Mudder event

Tough Mudder: The obstacle courses for adults that are now worth $250m

Crawling through dirt, plunging into ice cold water and scrambling over haystacks doesn’t sound like a route to riches. But a growing passion for extreme sports is turning it into just that

In Boston, the best of the human spirit was confronted by the very worst

The terrorist’s nihilism contrasts with the life-affirming instincts of the normal human being. There are few places where we can clearer see that than the end of a marathon

Review of 2012: Our writers and tweeters look back at a year's news from space to the jungle

Did it change the world, or just distract us for a day or two? Richard Askwith introduces our look-back at the past 12 months.

Helene Diamantides and Martin Stone, eventual winners, taking part in the 1992 race

Is The Dragon's Back the toughest race in the world?

The Dragon's Back, a five-day scramble across the mountainous spine of Wales, is so gruelling, it's only been attempted once. Until now, that is…

The Essay: System error

Parliamentary democracy was invented in the days of the horse and cart, and perfected during the steam age. In a world of ATMs and the Internet, isn't it time governments found a new way to let the people decide, asks Richard Askwith

<preform>Mystery. Murder. And half a century of suspense</p></preform>

Black magic was blamed when four teenagers found a woman's skeleton in a tree in wartime Worcestershire. More than 50 years on, her story still haunts this corner of the Midlands. But who did put Bella in the Witch Elm? And why can't they let her rest?

Mystery. Murder. And half a century of suspense

Black magic was blamed when four teenagers found a woman's skeleton in a tree in wartime Worcestershire. More than 50 years on, her story still haunts this corner of the Midlands. But who did put Bella in the Witch Elm? And why can't they let her rest in peace?

THE CAT FLAP

When mutilated cats began to appear by the dozen in London and the south-east, there was talk of serial killers and black magic. As Richard Askwith reports, the case of the mysterious `cat-ripper' has now been solved - but not to everyone's satisfaction
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Day In a Page

Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor