Travel

Springtime, just before the new century began. As Laos is now the new Cambodia, Vietnam was then the new Thailand, and my girlfriend and I had arrived – with our backpacks – to see what all the fuss was about. The capital Hanoi had dazzled, and we were due to take the train 420 miles down the coast to Hué. We were late, though. We were always late.

In this January 1965 file photo taken by Associated Press photographer Horst Faas, the sun breaks through dense jungle foliage around the embattled town of Binh Gia, 40 miles east of Saigon, as South Vietnamese troops, joined by US advisers, rest after a cold, damp and tense night of waiting in an ambush position for a Viet Cong attack that didn't come.

Horst Faas, the photographer whose images defined the Vietnam War, dies aged 79

Horst Faas, a prize-winning combat photographer who changed the way photojournalists covered conflict, has died aged 79.

Eric Charden, Singer and songwriter

Eric Charden, who died of cancer at the age of 69 on 29 April, was a French singer who with his wife and singing partner, Stone, had a string of hits in the 1970s.

Charden and his wife, Stone, at Paris Olympia in 1972

Eric Charden, Singer and songwriter

Eric Charden, who died of cancer at the age of 69 on 29 April, was a French singer who with his wife and singing partner, Stone, had a string of hits in the 1970s.

Karst away: The dramatic islands that mark Halong Bay

Trail of the unexpected: Kayaking in Vietnam

Paddle past pearls in Vietnam's Halong Bay.

Aubrac died after being overcome by 'extreme fatigue'

Le grand résistant Raymond Aubrac dies at 97

Raymond Aubrac, one of the leading figures of the French Resistance against the Nazis, has died at the age of 97.

A Perfectly Good Man, By Patrick Gale

There's a particular strain of English mildness that carries within it a finely wrought undercurrent of viciousness. It's there in the title of Patrick Gale's new novel, A Perfectly Good Man, which you could either take literally – that Barnaby Johnson, priest to the Cornish parish of Pendeen, is perfect in his goodness – or as a tight-lipped rebuke, that he is adequate at best.

What happens to Afghan women and children when Western troops leave?

Robert Fisk: Watch us lead the UN donkey up the Khyber

So back to THAT BLOODY WAR. I mean not the Syrian one – where we're going to stay hands off – or the Libyan one (where we were hands on, but not touching the ground). Nor the Iraqi one, which is a war at 60-a-day fatalities (pretty much equal with Syria's daily death toll, though we can't make that comparison). Nope. Of course, I mean the Afghan war which we fought in 1842 and in 1878-80 and in 1919 and from 2001 to 2014 (or 2015 or 2016, who knows?). We wouldn't let them down this time, we said about the Afghans – or Lord Blair of Kut al-Amara said – in 2001. Oh yes we will.

Vietnam police seize five tonnes of iguanas

Police in northern Vietnam have seized five tonnes of pangolin and iguana carcasses destined to be shipped to restaurants in China.

Go east, young man: Thomas Asbridge presenting ‘The Crusades’ for BBC2

Robert Fisk: History keeps repeating itself – as do clichés

Same Old Story. Journalists shouldn't use the phrase, but what else can I say when I prowl through press reports? Take the following. "It is slowly dawning... that the Americans are really going home, that there will be a ceasefire in this country soon, and then a march to the US... planes." Iraq? Nope. Afghanistan? You'd be so lucky.

Jobs fear as glass-maker Pilkington cuts back

Glass manufacturer Pilkington is to cut production at a UK factory under plans to axe 3,500 jobs worldwide.

Rush hour in Hanoi

A breathless week in non-stop Vietnam

Mark Stratton embarks on a turbo-charged seven days travelling from north to south – all made possible by the first direct flights from the UK

Verdant in Vietnam: Ana Mandara's spa

24-hour room service: Ana Mandara Hue, Vietnam

A vision of beauty on the coast of Vietnam

Album: East of Underground, Hell Below (Now Again)

Those who remember the Monty Python skit about the "groovy" Royal Navy recruitment campaign will be left jaw-dropped by Hell Below, an archival release featuring participants in actual US Army "Battle of the Bands" contests from the late 1960s.

Errors & Omissions: How journalistic shorthand can rob an event of its significance

Those of us who remember the "anti-Vietnam" demonstrations were carried back to the 1960s by the following opening of a news story on Wednesday: "Poor Tony.

Nick Broomfield: 'I drive a lot doing documentaries - it's a great way to see a country'

My Life in Travel: Nick Broomfield, documentary film-maker

'The Karoo desert was strange but startling'

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
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