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SECOND THOUGHTS

Captain Moonlight: A typical Sunday at Chequers

BORIS YELTSIN arrives in Britain later this month for a weekend at Chequers en route from Moscow to Washington. John Major is understood to be anxious to provide Mr Yeltsin with a flavour of the authentic Britain while he is here. There is talk of a visit to a pub and a village cricket match. But will this be enough? The Captain, as you know, is a great proselytiser for modern Britain; and so, to help the Prime Minister along a bit, I have devised a full Sunday programme for Boris:

Scandals threaten career of black civil rights boss

WASHINGTON - The largest and most venerable civil rights group in the United States, the NAACP, is embroiled in financial crisis and a leadership scandal. It may cost the organisation its controversial director, Benjamin Chavis and much of its dwindling prestige and influence as a mouthpiece of black America, writes Rupert Cornwell.

'O J missing on night of killing'

IN EVIDENCE damaging to O J Simpson, a limousine driver yesterday testified that the sports star was not at home when he called to pick him up to take him to Los Angeles airport on the night of the murder of his former wife, Nicole, and a male acquaintance.

Howard's limousine stolen

The Home Office has launched an urgent security review after Michael Howard's bullet-proof limousine was stolen. One of the Home Secretary's official cars, a pounds 26,000 Ford Scorpio Cosworth, was taken from a hotel car park in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, in the early hours of Thursday before Mr Howard addressed an Association of Chief Police Officers' conference on drugs. It was found dumped a mile away without its wheels.

A CRITICAL GUIDE: STAYING IN / York on ads: No 25: Virgin Atlantic

TERENCE STAMP is a person in his fifties admired by informed younger people for three things: being a legendary face in legendary Sixties times - 'icon' is the word people use now; for his menacing role as the made-it-big British entrepreneur in Wall Street; and for his autodidact's best-of-everything taste - a set in Albany, Lobb shoes, and so on. He is a little like Adam Faith, and you reckon that he'll know what's what from the inside. And I've never seen him in a commercial before . . .

From cradle to graveyard shift: When he isn't studying for his A-levels, Steven Williams spends his time carrying coffins. Christine Smith meets Britain's youngest undertaker

Steven Williams can see 100 tombstones from his bedroom window. His home is in the grounds of Penrhys cemetery, in South Wales, where his father once worked as sexton. It was there that he saw his first dead body at the age of five.

De Klerk hit by stone in township

President F W de Klerk was struck by a stone as screaming ANC supporters drove him from a mixed-race township during a campaign swing through South Africa's Northern Cape region, Reuter reports from Kimberley. Youths shouted 'De Klerk go to hell' as security officials bundled him into an armoured limousine and sped from the Postdene township outside the town of Postmasburg. The stone hit de Klerk below the left ear as he tried to address black supporters of his ruling National Party.

Eccles bids farewell to 'little angel' Laura: Hundreds attend funeral of five-year-old transplant patient. Liz Hunt reports

'If anyone, should ever write, my life story, For whatever reason that might be You'll be there, in between each line of pain and glory,

Yeltsin's cars stolen

(First Edition)

Obituary: Jacques Chazot

Jacques Chazot, dancer and writer: born Locmiquelic, Brittany 25 September 1928; died Monthyon, Seine-et-Oise 12 July 1993.

Near miss for royal limo

The Princess Royal's limousine was nearly rammed last weekend by an unidentified car as she drove to Moscow airport while on a visit to the former Soviet Union, AP reports from Moscow.

Hussein check-up

King Hussein left hospital a day after he was admitted for check-ups and observation because of an irregular heartbeat, AP reports from Amman.

Georgian leader survives shell blast

THE Georgian leader, Eduard Shev ardnadze, was lucky to be alive after a shell exploded near his limousine while he was on an inspection tour of the rebel Black Sea region of Abkhazia, it emerged yesterday.

Elton John returns to Promised Land

Elton John returned to Israel yesterday to give a concert that was postponed by a day when he bolted the country after an ugly brawl between bodyguards, fans and photographers, Reuter reports from Tel Aviv. John was spirited away in a helicopter immediately after his plane landed. John left Israel for London in a huff early on Wednesday only hours after he arrived. He was angry that he had to wait in line at airport immigration control and because of the melee when his limousine pulled up to a Tel Aviv hotel.
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?