News Lord Butler himself was asked to investigate two cases of potential ministerial misconduct

Britain’s most senior civil servants should no longer be asked to investigate accusations of ministerial misconduct because they do not have the “powers” to get to the truth, the former Cabinet Secretary, Lord Robin Butler, has suggested.

Liam Fox: Why the Conservatives say we must stay on in Afghanistan

It has not been an easy week for British troops in Afghanistan. Two soldiers were killed by improvised explosive devices, which cause more than 80 per cent of our fatalities in Afghanistan. Five more were killed when an Afghan policeman opened fire on his British mentors.

Brown retreats over TA training cuts

Gordon Brown staged a dramatic climbdown over cost-cutting plans to suspend routine training for the Territorial Army.

Tory storms face MoD's weather forecasters

Britain's weather forecasters face being sold off under Tory plans to save money, said the shadow defence secretary, Liam Fox. He said the Met Office, now owned by the Ministry of Defence (MoD), could be privatised to save cash if the Conservatives win power.

The Sketch: There's a new order – and Harriet will run it

The swan will not fly. The sunfish will not swim. Harriet Harman will not run for Labour leader. The natural world is running on new rules. Maybe it's global warming.

'Endemic' problems on MoD kit purchases

The Government’s system for purchasing defence equipment is in such a state that “the problems and sums of money involved have almost lost their power to shock, so endemic is the issue”, according to an official report.

Tories plan to slash MoD costs by 25%

The Tories aim to slash 25 per cent off the cost of running the Ministry of Defence as part of a sweeping review of the UK's military capabilities, it emerged today.

Labour's fiercest critic on Afghan war gets Tory job

Sir Richard Dannatt, the former head of the Army who has criticised the Government over its tactics in Afghanistan, is to become a Tory adviser on defence policy.

Brown in row over sending more troops to Afghanistan

Gordon Brown was embroiled in a bitter row with the former head of the Army today over claims that he turned down pleas for more troops in Afghanistan.

Liam Fox: History does not show that war in Afghanistan is unwinnable

We can describe failure in Afghanistan, but can we describe success? What does our idea of winning look like? Success in Afghanistan will be achieved when we have a stable enough Afghanistan, able to manage its own internal and external security to a degree that stops interference from outside powers and allowing the country to resist the establishment of terror bases and the training camps that were there before.

MoD's £35bn defence black hole is 'lethal'

Government has wasted taxpayers' money for a decade, leaked report shows

Pandora: Cameron's swinging plans on spending

David Cameron has been at pains to talk tough of late when it's come to his party's future spending plans.

Stop MoD payouts appeal, says Minister's aide

An aide to Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth today urged him to drop his appeal against compensation awards to two injured servicemen.

Fight for our veterans: 'Operation claw back compensation'

Chorus of disapproval greets launch of MoD's legal action to reduce payments made to injured soldiers

Shot soldier has to fight on two fronts

A British soldier was at the centre of two major battles today - fighting the Taliban and in a Government court challenge over injury compensation for the armed forces.

The Sketch: Left to right, and back to front

It's too heavy to get angry, so let's sit in this fridge and wonder why the Gordon Balls axis of persuasion makes us so hot under the collar.

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people Emma Watson addresses celebrity nude photo leak
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Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
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Boris Johnson may be manoeuvring to succeed David Cameron
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peopleHis band Survivor was due to resume touring this month
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people'It can last and it's terrifying'
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In this photo illustration a school student eats a hamburger as part of his lunch which was brought from a fast food shop near his school, on October 5, 2005 in London, England. The British government has announced plans to remove junk food from school lunches. From September 2006, food that is high in fat, sugar or salt will be banned from meals and removed from vending machines in schools across England. The move comes in response to a campaign by celebrity TV chef Jamie Oliver to improve school meals.
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fashionModel of the moment shoots for first time with catwalk veteran
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
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Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering