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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Wild Target: Washington DC’s Rock Creek Park has four times as many deer as it can cope with, say authorities

The deerhunter returns to Washington

The rose gardens and parks of the US capital are under attack and only lethal force can save them from the doe-eyed assailants

Tom Brady will go up against arch-rival Peyton Manning on Saturday

American Football: Cream rises to top as final battle for Super Bowl begins

It's Conference Championship weekend, and the four best teams in the NFL lock horns for a shot at the sport's ultimate prize

NSA surveillance revelations: Barack Obama announces reforms to bulk data collection and spying on heads of states

Long-awaited speech unveiled some restrictions to America's surveillance policy, but Obama remained largely unapologetic

Sorry business: Chris Christie, on his way to apologise to the Fort Lee mayor

Chris Christie's story had better add up

The political fate of the US presidential hopeful rests less on how much ridicule he attracts than on whether he can see off the lawyers

Seattle, led by Russell Wilson, are favourites to win next month's Super Bowl

American Football: All eyes on rising star Russell Wilson as Seattle aim to end 35 years of hurt

For devotees of the NFL, this is as good as it gets – the divisional round of the play-offs, four games pitting the regular season’s finest against four challengers already battle-hardened by victory in last weekend’s ever-treacherous wild-card round. And in 2014 there’s an extra twist: the prospect that one of the longest, most painful droughts in US sport might be near an end.

Chain reaction: Abyssinian slaves forced to wear iron collars, photographed around 1910

Steve McQueen’s acclaimed film 12 Years A Slave is brutal in its honesty. But is it too much for American audiences?

The paucity of slavery movies is especially striking when compared with the hundreds made about the Holocaust

Uphill battle: New York’s snowstorm is the first test of Bill de Blasio’s term as Mayor

All eyes are on New York's new Mayor

The city is being led by a liberal for the first time in a generation, and the Democrats – especially Hillary Clinton - will be watching closely

Icy weather to play a part as wild-card teams start the chase for the Super Bowl

Today, the battle for the Super Bowl starts in earnest. The regular season is out of the way, and so is Black Monday which immediately follows, the now traditional cull of NFL head coaches who didn’t deliver the goods. This year five were sacked (the most noteworthy among them Mike Shanahan of the utterly dysfunctional 3-13 Washington Redskins).

Peyton Manning broke Tom Brady's record for touchdown passes in a season

NFL: Indianapolis Colts must beware a (Peyton) Manning scorned

Devastated by injury and dumped by his beloved team, one of the NFL’s all-time great quarterbacks is back in business and breaking records

John Foster Dulles greets his brother Alan at the airport

Why Wasps are an endangered species in the US

Once the elite, tracing their lineage to the Pilgrim Fathers – America's white Anglo-Saxon Protestants' grip on power is weaker than ever

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Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there