News Marine Le Pen, leader of the French National Front, sits next to Dutch leader of the Party for Freedom (PVV) Geert Wilders, at The Hague

The move by Geert Wilders of the Dutch Freedom Party and Marine Le Pen of France’s National Front, came ahead of next year's elections which EU officials fear will bring a surge in support for nationalist and xenophobic parties

Stephen Foley: GE boss turns his fire on his own feet

US Outlook: Chief executive of multinational corporation slams government regulation, protectionism – shock.

Leading article: An industrial-size economic challenge

Vince Cable has been one of the bookmakers' favourites to be the next minister to resign from the Cabinet. But on the basis of the Business Secretary's maiden public speech yesterday, he is not looking for the exit just yet.

Rumbling dissent on backbenches mars Lib Dem breakthrough

The Liberal Democrats were celebrating the beginning of a new era for their party last night after agreeing to form a coalition that will see them form part of the Government for the first time in their history.

Red Tory, By Phillip Blond

According to Phillip Blond, there has been "a wholesale collapse of British culture, virtue and belief". It has led to " increasing fear, lack of trust and abundance of suspicion, long-term increase in violent crime, loneliness, recession, depression, private and public debt, family break-up, divorce, infidelity, bureaucratic and unresponsive public services, dirty hospitals, powerlessness, the rise of racism, excessive paperwork, longer and longer working hours, children who have no parents... seemingly immovable poverty, the permanence of inequality, teenagers with knives, teenagers being knifed, the decline of politeness, aggressive youths, the erosion of our civil liberties and the increase of obsessive surveillance, public authoritarianism, private libertarianism, general pointlessness, political cynicism and a pervading lack of daily joy". It is a dire litany, but in this book about "how the Left and Right have broken Britain and how we can fix it", Blond is confident that nearly everyone will accept this calamitous diagnosis: "When I say that British culture has collapsed, we - whatever our political beliefs - almost immediately recognise the truth of it." He is no less confident that the calamity can be reversed, if only his analysis is understood and acted on.

British tank industry on the wrong track?

If the Scout deal goes to a US firm it will kill the British tank industry, and shine a spotlight on the UK's open defence policy. Sarah Arnott reports

Leading article: Mr Sarkozy places France at the centre of Europe

The region as a whole will benefit from improved UK-French relations

David Prosser: No time to set up roadblocks for Toyota

Outlook There has been a suspicion in Japan for several weeks that certain American politicians are keen to make as much fuss as possible about the Toyota recall scandal because of the ailing condition of their own automotive sector. The call yesterday from Mike Johanns, a Republican senator, for a ban on imports of Japanese cars until the "Japanese government can assure us that all the defects are out of these vehicles" will have done nothing to allay those fears. Mr Johanns, and others, clearly do see this episode as an opportunity for a spot of protectionism.

Stephen King: Danger of a US-China trade war

It's not difficult to imagine a US President adopting a China-bashing manifesto

Hamish McRae: China is a hungry teenager eating up resources – and we can't stop it

Economic Life: China becoming world economic leader is no further in the future than Major becoming PM was in the past

France joins race to digitize world's books

Amid the flat, wide fields of central France, a team of re-trained secretaries and IT experts is packaging Europe's literary heritage for the digital era.

Business Diary: Defeat leaves a nasty taste in the mouth

Within hours of reports on Monday night that Kraft had succeeded in its bid for Cadbury – and before an official announcement – a new 'How Can We Ruin Yours' take on Creme Egg advertising was doing the rounds on the internet. If only opponents to the deal had been so creative in their defence of the chocolate company.

Les Ebdon: The many are being sacrificed for the few

Analysis

David Prosser: Let RBS lend to Kraft

Outlook Whatever the rights and wrongs of Kraft's bid for Cadbury, it would be crazy to heed the calls of Midlands MPs – and others – who want the Government to stop Royal Bank of Scotland helping to fund the takeover. RBS is one of a syndicate of lenders offering finance to the US company as it tries to buy up its rival, and those who want to keep Cadbury British say it is inappropriate for a bank that is now 84 per cent owned by the taxpayer to play such a role.

Sean O'Grady: What gruesome deal was behind this betrayal?

Like the tale of Cinderella's delicate glass slipper and the ugly sisters, the EU seems to have difficulty trying to find a policy on footwear that fits.

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