Arts and Entertainment

One of the most brutal battles of the Second World War was the Nazi offensive against Stalingrad where atrocities were committed on both sides and the soldiers also had to contend with starvation and freezing conditions during a lengthy siege.

Review: A Meal In Winter, By Hubert Mingarelli (Translation by Sam Taylor)

The Holocaust is a constant presence in literature, prompting a steady stream of new books. Without doubt, it is an extreme of modern history from which we must continue to learn. At the same time it can seem that there is little left of substance to say about it. Hubert Mingarelli gives the lie to this. His subject matter is supremely dark, but against all the odds, he manages to offer us a positive message.

Paperback review: Her Privates We, by Frederic Manning

Frederic Manning, an Australian writer who settled in Britain in 1903, was little known before this fictionalised account of his experiences in the trenches was published in 1930, attracting praise from Hemingway and E M Forster. But while the wartime poetry of Wilfred Owen and Rupert Brooke has become lodged in the collective consciousness, Manning’s extraordinary novel, reissued here by Serpent’s Tail, remains somewhat obscure.

Members of the Liwa al-Tawhid rebel group - six Syrian rebel groups have joined forces to counter rise of al-Qa'ida

Turning the tide? Six Syrian rebel groups join forces to counter rise of al-Qa'ida

The new Islamic Front will have an estimated 45,000 fighters under its control

Killing Oswald(NC) - film review

Was Lee Harvey Oswald a "patsy" as he himself claimed?

1981: Protesters in balaclavas confront British troops in Belfast

Undercover British soldiers accused of killing unarmed civilians in Northern Ireland

Former members of Military Reaction Force unit tell Panorama they would carry out drive-by shootings and broke army regulations

Capita’s chief executive, Paul Pindar, had been defending his company against allegations that recruitment had slumped since it was put in charge of advertising

'We need more wars': Head of controversial private outsourcing firm blames lack of conflict for spectacular collapse in Army recruitment since it took charge

MPs outraged as Capita’s chief executive says potential new recruits have too little to do

Egyptian military soldiers inspect the scene near the destroyed bus

10 killed in soldiers’ bus rammed by Sinai suicide car bomber

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, but this is a signature method used by militant groups linked to or inspired by al-Qaida

Norwegian army placed on strict vegetarian diet

'Meatless Mondays' have been introduced to reduce the amount of foods eaten that can contribute to global warming

Philip Hammond warns Tories risk 'serious damage' if they rebel against reserve reforms

House of Commons due to vote on plans to expand reserves to offset cuts in regular forces

Paris shooting: Fear of repeat attacks as police hunt gunman that opened fire on Libération newspaper

Soon afterwards shots were fired at the headquarters of a major French bank just west of Paris, and a gunman took a man hostage briefly nearby

Top Syrian rebel leader Abdul-Qadir Saleh dies after air strike

A top rebel leader died early on Monday of wounds sustained during a government air strike last week, his group said.

Previously unknown Greek group claims responsibility for Golden Dawn shootings

‘Militant People's Revolutionary Forces’ said the drive-by attack was in retaliation for murder of anti-fascism rapper Pavlos Fissas

Afghanistan suicide car bomb kills ten near Kabul compound

More than 20 were also injured after a bomb attack in the Afghan capital

At least 19 dead as floods hit Vietnam

Floods and landslides triggered by heavy rains in central Vietnam have killed 19 people, left eight missing and forced about 80,000 from their homes, disaster officials and state media said.

Fijian soldier Filimone Lacanivalu granted residency to stay in the UK

Mr Lacanivalu fought during two tours in Afghanistan and served with the British Army for nine years but faced being deported to Fiji

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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
Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that? The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that?

The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year
Hollande's vanity project is on a high-speed track to the middle of nowhere

Vanity project on a high-speed track to nowhere

France’s TGV network has become mired in controversy
Sports Quiz of the Year

Sports Quiz of the Year

So, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry, his love of 'Bargain Hunt', and life as a llama farmer

Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry and his love of 'Bargain Hunt'

From Armstrong and Miller to Pointless
Sanchez helps Gunners hold on after Giroud's moment of madness

Sanchez helps Gunners hold on

Olivier Giroud's moment of madness nearly costs them
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
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