Voices

My tally is in my head rather than on my laptop. Not being a high-flying politician, I guess my enemies are fewer and easier to remember than hers are.

President Obama has made overhauling immigration a priority

Barack Obama opens the door for 11 million illegal immigrants to stay in US

President optimistic of progress as Republicans soften line

Ready for service: US to lift ban on women in front-line combat jobs

The US military will formally end its ban on women serving in front-line combat roles, officials said yesterday, in a move that could open thousands of fighting jobs to female service members for the first time.

Jim Armitage: Defence big guns will want to target Hagel

Global Outlook The defence group BAE is among the biggest British spenders on Washington lobbying, splurging $3.5m in 2012. Over the past five years, it's spent some $24m, according to OpenSecrets. That's twice as much as even Barclays did during the aftermath of the banking crisis. Rolls-Royce, another big supplier to the US military, spent $7.3m over that period.

Qazi Hussain Ahmed: Politician who opposed US policy in Afghanistan

The politician and religious leader Qazi Hussain Ahmed, who died in Islamabad on 6 January at the age of 74 following a heart attack, was an advocate of Islamic democracy who transformed the right-wing Jamaat-e-Islami party into a populist outfit. He was a strong critic of the US's counter-terrorism policies, and was widely known for his opposition to the involvement of the US and its allies in Afghanistan.

President Barack Obama pushed ahead yesterday with his choice of the former US Senator Chuck Hagel as America’s next Pentagon chief while nominating his anti-terror advisor, John Brennan, as director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

Obama's choices to lead Pentagon and CIA run into Republican opposition

Nominees for posts of Defence Secretary and head of CIA can expect rough ride from senators

American taxpayers face paying the bill for Senate's 'fiscal cliff' deal

President Barack Obama yesterday pressed the House of Representatives to vote in favour of a Senate-backed deal that would avert the swingeing spending cuts and soaring tax rates of America's "fiscal cliff".

Ben Affleck in Armageddon: Appeals to the anti-comet pro-Aerosmith vote

How Ben Affleck’s Hollywood CV will propel him into the US Senate

Could Ben Affleck be swapping the Hollywood Hills for Capitol Hill?

Page 3 Profile: Chuck Hagel, former US senator

The favourite to be Obama's Defence Secretary?

Stuffed animals and a sign calling for prayer rest at the base of a tree near the Newtown Village Cemetery in Newtown

Newtown massacre: Washington shows first ripples of what could become an extensive push for curbs on owning and buying guns

Only hours after President Barack Obama chided his nation at an inter-faith memorial service in Newtown, Connecticut, for not doing enough to protect its children from violence, a small but swelling chorus broke out in Washington offering him support for new curbs on gun ownership.

'Time for the President to stand up and lead … this should be his number one agenda'

As President Obama prepared to speak at a vigil in Newtown last night, there were growing calls for him to make good on his promise of "meaningful action" on gun control.

As mourners filled Sunday services in Newtown, Connecticut, yesterday, the names of the victims of the Sandy Hook school shooting are seen on a US flag in the town centre

"These tragedies must end", Obama tells grief-stricken Newtown as pressure grows for action on gun control

President Obama promises to use “whatever power” his office holds to prevent “more tragedies likes this.”

Invisible Ink: No 152 - Edgar Box

Unusually for this column, we'll not begin with a profile of the author, for reasons that will become apparent. Rather, let's start with the books themselves – three crime novels set in the early 1950s starring war veteran (at 28) Peter Cutler Sargent II, now a womanising PR guru. In the first, Death in the Fifth Position, he's hired to work for a dance company when their prima ballerina does a dive from the rafters on opening night. Someone cut her cable, and soon the sleuth finds himself in a nest of thespian vipers trading razor-sharp quips as the bodies pile up.

Suspected arms dealer, Viktor Bout, is arrested after a sting in Thailand in 2010

Those who let Magnitsky die were hoping the case would die with him. They were wrong

When Sergei Magnitsky lay close to death in Moscow's Butyrka Prison in 2009, his worsening illness left untreated and exacerbated by beatings, few people heard his cries of pain. A man who had uncovered something dangerous, he was left to meet a horrible end, and none of the people who let it happen imagined that years later his demise would become an international cause célèbre and one of the most poignant reminders of the dangers of doing business in post-Communist Russia.

House Speaker John Boehner.

Senate considers options on fiscal cliff

As congressional leaders prepare to meet Friday morning at the White House to discuss the looming fiscal cliff, much of Washington is focused on the potential for compromise between President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner.

Zeboski’s photo of the Reagans during the 1980 election campaign

Walt Zeboski Photographer who chronicled Ronald Reagan's 1980 presidential campaign

Walt Zeboski, who died on 12 November aged 83, was a photographer for the Associated Press who chronicled Ronald Reagan's 1980 presidential campaign and a succession of California governors.

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The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003