Voices In today's relaxed Tehran, headscarves are being worn back from the face

Ex-home secretary Jack Straw returns from a visit to Tehran convinced that it’s time for the West to rethink its relationship with the regime

On guard: Ariel Sharon as a commander in the 1948 war of independence

I shall mourn Ariel Sharon's life, not his death

Sharon deliberately deceived his Cabinet. He devastated Beirut, leaving 300 dead in a day and looked on approvingly as fascist militias entered refugee camps to rape, murder and torture thousands of Palestinians

The News Matrix: Monday 13 January 2014

Experts push for Iraq war crimes inquiry

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon pauses during the weekly cabinet meeting in his Jerusalem office. Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who has been in a coma for eight years, clings to life after a decline in the functioning of various bodily organs, his doctors say, Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014.

Ariel Sharon dies: Former Israeli Prime Minister's life in pictures

By Heather Saul

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has died aged 85, according to Israeli radio, quoting a relative of his family.

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon pauses during the weekly cabinet meeting in his Jerusalem office. Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who has been in a coma for eight years, clings to life after a decline in the functioning of various bodily organs, his doctors say, Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014.

Ariel Sharon dies: Former Israeli Prime Minister's life in pictures

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has died aged 85, according to Israeli radio, quoting a relative of his family.

Former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon pictured in 2005

Ariel Sharon dies aged 85: Barack Obama praises former prime minister for 'dedicating his life to the State of Israel'

The former Israeli Prime Minister suffered a rapid deterioration in his condition this week, which caused his organs to fail

The News Matrix: Tuesday 7 January 2014

Most Britons back halt to immigration

Former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon pictured in 2005

Ariel Sharon in 'critical condition': Former Israeli Prime Minister's 'life in danger'

The Israeli press are reporting that his family have been called to his bedside, as hospital confirms Sharon's medical condition

The News Matrix: Thursday 2 January 2014

Top JP Morgan staff earned £2.1m each

Alexandra Roach as Becky

Utopia: They're coming to get you

New Channel 4 drama Utopia combines conspiracy theories, edge-of-your-seat tension and dark humour with a talented cast. It could turn out to be one of the TV hits of the year

Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate Mohamed Morsi celebrating his victory in Tahrir Square yesterday

Regardless of whether Obama or Romney wins, America's relations with the Arab World will change

The Long View: Every reader of this article will be dead or of old age before the Arab "revolution" is complete. Palestinians are the only ones not to benefit from it

Was Yasser Arafat murdered? The 'myth' that won't die

Israel says no, but most Palestinians disagree – and now France is investigating. By Donald Macintyre
Highly influential: Elyashiv

Rabbi Yosef Elyashiv: Hardline interpreter of Jewish law

Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, the highly influential leader of the Lithuanian sect of ultra-Orthodox Ashkenazi Jews, was known for his unyielding hardline rulings on complicated elements of Jewish law. As an eminent Posek, a decider of Jewish law, a title earned not by appointment but by scholarship, reputation and communal trust built up over decades, Elyashiv applied the Torah and Talmudic law to modern times, ruling on conversion, marriage, divorce and even the legitimacy of wigs made in India.

French tenor Gilles Ragon performs during a rehearsal of Tannhäuser by Richard Wagner

Israeli orchestra strikes note of controversy with Wagner work

A seven-decade old cultural taboo will be broken next month when an Israeli symphony orchestra will play works by Richard Wagner inside the country for the first time since the state's foundation in 1948.

Donald Macintyre: History will have more to say on this titanic warrior

It is surprising that the legacy of so titanic a figure as Ariel Sharon does not figure more in Israeli public discourse than it does. But the left never wholly warmed to the scourge of the Palestinians; those on the right, meanwhile, felt bitterly betrayed by his withdrawal from Gaza.

Tim Franks: Is he really biased against <u>both</u> sides in the Middle East?

The BBC's man in Jerusalem and a practising Jew is stepping down. Ian Burrell hears him explain why
Voices
The Sumatran tiger, endemic to the Indonesian island of Sumatra, is an endangered species
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The Swiss Re tower or 'Gherkin' was at one time the UK’s most expensive office when German bank IVG and private equity firm Evans Randall bought it
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Gardai wait for the naked man, who had gone for a skinny dip in Belfast Lough
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Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them altogether

Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them

Jonathon Porritt sounds the alarm
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

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