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.

This year's Facebook, Twitter and Google trends have reaffirmed my faith in humans

It's the time of year for lists and round-ups, but what do they say about society?

Syrian anti-regime protesters wave pre-Baath Syrian flags during a demonstration - some British nationals fighting in Syria have been stripped of their citizenship

Exclusive: No way back for Britons who join the Syrian fight, says Theresa May

Secret use of citizenship-stripping powers has been dramatically stepped up as Theresa May moves to prevent the return of dual-nationals who have gone to fight in Syria.

The News Matrix: Monday 23 December 2013

Artificial heart 'just a pump' like real one

A Syrian man helps an injured man following an airstrike in Aleppo's Maadi neighborhood. Two children were among at least 13 people killed in new air strikes on a rebel-held district

Hundreds killed as Assad pounds Aleppo from the air

Since it began in mid-December, the government’s aerial bombardment has left more than 200 people dead

Syrian rebels have taken iconoclasm to new depths, with shrines, statues and even a tree destroyed – but to what end?

Compared writing poetry to the sex act? May he be turned to dust!

Khan: he was arrested last year less than 48 hours after arriving in Syria

David Cameron describes death of Dr Abbas Khan in Syrian prison as 'sickening' as doctor's body is flown back to UK

Dr Abbas Khan, 32, was on the verge of being released when his family were told of his death

Port of call: Byblos bears traces of its Phoenician past
21 December 1988: Houses on fire in Lockerbie, Scotland, after a Boeing 747 aeroplane, Pan Am Flight 103, crashed after a mid-flight explosion on board - according to a new investigation, the US knew of other suspects

Revealed: US 'knew of other Lockerbie suspects'

On anniversary of bombing, fresh evidence emerges that Palestinian group was responsible

Flashback to August 2013: member of UN investigation team taking samples of sands near a part of a missile in the Damascus countryside

Syria chemicals to be shipped for UK destruction in bid to dismantle illegal weapons stockpile

Britain is to destroy 150 tonnes of industrial-grade chemicals as part of the international effort to dismantle President Bashar al-Assad's illegal weapons stockpile.

Khan: he was arrested last year less than 48 hours after arriving in Syria

Doctor Abbas Khan: Orthopaedic surgeon arrested on a humanitarian mission who died after a year in a Syrian prison

Abbas Khan was a British doctor whose altruism took him to Syria to help with the long-running humanitarian crisis in that ravaged country. But he was plunged into a nightmare year of torture and confinement which ended in a lonely prison death.

Michael Adebolajo (C), in 2010, among the nine suspected members of the Al-Shabaab Movement

Lee Rigby murder: UK’s street gangs ' are the next breeding ground for new brand of extremist'

Young urban gang members have been targeted by charismatic preachers for conversion to a radical form of Islam, in a development not being properly addressed by the Government's security programme, community leaders claimed in the wake of the Woolwich trial.

A series of bombings hit Shia areas of Baghdad this month

Iraqi policeman dies saving pilgrims from suicide bomber as attacks rise

Although five people were killed and 10 wounded, police say the casualties would have been far higher if Ayyub Khalaf had not wrapped his arms around the terrorist to shield others from the blast

Hundreds of Syrian civilians have lost their lives under the current regime

The death of Dr Abbas Khan shows how Syria's President Assad shares power with ruthless and erratic henchmen

From child torture to sarin gas, the security services’ methods have dictated the war

Sound and fury: Saudi Arabia’s concerns over Syria are not necessarily the same as ours

Saudi Arabia considers Syria a proxy war with Iran – and wants the US, and the rest of the world, to lend a hand

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
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'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk