News

The First Lady on confidence, achievement and the all-important issue plaguing the female face of a nation: plastic surgery

Michelle Obama's jet aborts landing

US air traffic controllers directed a plane carrying First Lady Michelle Obama to abort a landing at Andrews Air Force Base because it was too close to a military cargo jet, in yet another embarrassment for the Federal Aviation Administration.

Boyd Tonkin: The not so secret life of Her Indoors

The week in books

Why Jamie's knives are out for Sarah Palin

Chef brands US politician a 'Froot-Loop' over her criticism of childhood obesity drive

Obamas to make state visit to Britain in May

Barack and Michelle Obama will pay a state visit to Britain between 24 and 26 May, in a trip designed to underscore US ties with Britain, and lay to rest more general doubts about the importance Washington accords to its European allies.

Obama coming to UK on state visit

US President Barack Obama is to make a state visit to the UK in May after accepting an invitation from the Queen, Buckingham Palace announced tonight.

Editor-At-Large: Brilliant teachers to the rescue as Gove betrays our schools

It might look as if Michael Gove is in hot water after being criticised by a High Court Judge for the manner in which he cancelled the £55bn Building Schools for the Future scheme, but the Secretary of State for Education has a far more serious problem on his hands. After Friday's court ruling, no doubt the six councils who took him to court will make their case all over again and this time he will have to consider it properly, but there's every possibility he will reach exactly the same decision.

Terence Blacker: Kick the bullies, not the habit

I felt a genuine pang of sadness at this week's news that Barack Obama has given up smoking. The pester-power of the women in his life, his wife and daughters, have apparently broken this proud man at last. Michelle Obama announced her triumph on American television.

Why Britannia wasn't so cool for Michelle

When Michelle Obama chose to wear an Alexander McQueen gown to a state dinner in honour of Chinese president Hu Jintao last week, she was presumably unaware of the controversy such a gesture might spark.

Be happy like us, Obamas tell William and Kate

Barack and Michelle Obama sent a goodwill message to Prince William and bride-to-be Kate Middleton today during an interview about their own private lives.

Man sacked by Gap is new king of US fashion – thanks to Michelle

Mickey Drexler fronts $3bn bid for J Crew – the First Lady's favourite label

The locals loved it but Obama jig is a PR pratfall

It had all gone so perfectly to his PR team's plan, from the gentle Q&A sessions to the convivial handshakes. Then Barack Obama hit the dance-floor.

Michelle Obama's 'rock star' status fails to draw crowds

The crowd went wild when Michelle Obama swept into a high-school gymnasium in Las Vegas yesterday morning, with little Harry Reid trailing in her wake and a local Mariachi band, in full dress uniform, entertaining the crowd. But behind the flag waving and anthem-singing, and the sunny optimism of a typical American election rally, there was a palpable sense of unease.

Editor-At-Large: Plans to invade our privacy make Street View look discreet

I thought the point of an Information Commissioner was to protect the rights of the individual, but the current incumbent, Christopher Graham, doesn't inspire much confidence. Last May, Google admitted it had "inadvertently" amassed a staggering amount of personal information about our Wi-Fi networks, collected by its Street View cameras from 2006 until earlier this year. That seems to be a very long time to collect stuff without noticing how contentious it might be. The company said it was profoundly sorry, and had no intention of passing this information on to third parties or exploiting it for commercial gain. Nevertheless, it has not said how it is going to destroy the data or how securely it is currently stored. In an interview last week, Google said it was still deciding what to do with it.

Michelle Obama: The three billion dollar woman

A New York professor of finance has revealed Mrs Obama's staggering impact on the world of fashion

Katherine Butler: What made mothers so superior?

Sarah Palin’s logic is that mothers have special powers, privileged access to some kind of innate, intuitive wisdom that is denied to the childless
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Colombia's James Rodriguez celebrates one of his goals during the FIFA World Cup 2014 round of 16 match between Colombia and Uruguay at the Estadio do Maracana in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
transfersColombian World Cup star completes £63m move to Spain
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Antoine Griezmann has started two of France’s four games so far
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techYahoo Japan launches service to delete your files and email your relatives when you die
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Child's play: letting young people roam outdoors directly contradicts the current climate
lifeHow much independence should children have?
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Tycoons' text: Warren Buffett and Bill Gates both cite John Brookes' 'Business Adventures' as their favourite book
booksFind out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
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<p><strong>2008</strong></p>
<p>Troubled actor Robert Downey Jr cements his comeback from drug problems by bagging the lead role in Iron Man. Two further films follow</p>
filmRobert Downey Jr named Hollywood's highest paid actor for second year running
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Dale Bolinger arranged to meet the girl via a fetish website
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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
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor