Rupert Cornwell

Known for his commentary on international relations and US politics, Rupert Cornwell also contributes obituaries and occasionally even a column for the sports pages. With The Independent since its launch in 1986, he was the paper's first Moscow correspondent - covering the collapse of the Soviet Union – during which time he won two British Press Awards. Previously a foreign correspondent for the Financial Times and Reuters, he has also been a diplomatic correspondent, leader writer and columnist, and has served as Washington bureau editor. In 1983 he published God's Banker, about Roberto Calvi, the Italian banker found hanging from Blackfriars Bridge.

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Barry, left, in 1978, after winning his first mayoral election

Marion Barry: Civil rights hero who went on to become mayor of Washington but was laid low by his personal demons

Marion Barry could have been a great man, an indomitable fighter for civil rights and the mayor who made Washington DC whole. Instead, he will be remembered above all as a racial polariser brought low by his demons, his career summarised by grainy images of him smoking crack cocaine with a former mistress at a downtown hotel.

Bill Cosby dismisses the allegations that have demolished his lovable TV persona as ‘innuendos’

Bill Cosby: from America's dad to sexual predator

Out of America: Stories of his alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans
Byrne in 1979: four years later she lost in the primary to Harold Washington, who became Chicago’s first black mayor

Jane Byrne: Politician who remains the only woman to serve as mayor of one of the three largest cities in America

Jane Byrne, the only female mayor in Chicago history, established a milestone for women’s advancement in the US.

Jim Webb has criticised rising social equality

Jim Webb: The redneck Vietnam vet who is eyeing the presidency

Jim Webb has become the first Democrat to challenge Hillary Clinton

By the end of the year, says the White House, Obama will take executive action to at last deliver comprehensive immigration reform

Someone tell President Obama he lost the midterms — he's busier than he's been in years

Out of America: He seems fired up by defeat, and has ploughed ahead on climate change, the internet... and now immigration
George W Bush discusses ‘41: A Portrait of My Father

Bush the father, by Bush the son, adds context but offers few real insights

Biography '41' reveals another side of George W, but has few surprises

Angelina Jolie, with William Hague and John Kerry, should not confuse her role as UN envoy with internal US politics

Please don't run for office, Angelina Jolie

Out of America: The actress has hinted her future may lie in Washington, but she would surely be depressed by its deeply flawed system
Mitt Romney is just one of a number of frontrunners to lead the Republican party in the next US election
President Obama has two years remaining in office
Mikhail Gorbachev (left), and Erich Honecker in 1986

Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

He believed liberalism was consistent with Communism, but he was wrong. The forces of democracy he unleashed toppled the Wall, and it is because of him this occurred without bloodshed

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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
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?