President Obama will forgo five per cent of his salary

Barack Obama forgoes 5% of salary to 'show solidarity' with government workers

Barack Obama is to forgo 5 per cent of his official salary in a move designed to show common cause with government workers hit by the so-called sequestration – budget cuts that are eliminating overtime for some and forcing others to take an unpaid leave of absence.

Councils spends £2m on a bus stop: for that price I'd want Mick Jagger singing 'Gimme Shelter'

Global austerity means that local councils and town mayors are having to cut their coats according to their cloth.

Senator Robert Menendez in spotlight over campaign funds

Prostitute recants sex claims against Senator Robert Menendez

Call-girl withdraws allegations after admitting she was paid to make it all up claims New Jersey Democrat in clear over sex orgy scandal but is still under investigation

Keystone pipeline: Was environmental backlash over the top?

The proposed creation of a pipeline - the Keystone XL - to carry oil from Canada into America has become a rallying point for US environmentalists. They argue it will damage wildlife and prolong America's dependence on fossil fuels. But a State Department draft report released Friday stated: "there would be no significant impacts to most resources along the proposed project route." Here's a selection of the American media's response.

Pete Domenici was among those who tried to get Bill Clinton impeached in 1999 - he admitted this week that he sired a child with the daughter of a colleague

I've got a love child, admits senator Pete Domenici who tried to get Bill Clinton impeached

A Republican stalwart, now 80, has owned up to a 1970s liaison with the daughter of a colleague

On the ball: Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin

Washington Redskins – time for a name change?

Out of America: US sports teams are dropping Native Indian-inspired names that are viewed as racist

From Mr Normal to chef-de-guerre: How President Hollande found his appetite for leadership

After an uncertain start, intervention in Mali has bucked the President's approval ratings

An embassy security guard arrives at the Gate 2 of the US embassy just minutes after a suicide bomber has detonated an explosive device at the entrance of the U.S. Embassy

Police investigate cause of Mexico City office blast that killed 32

Explosion in Petroleos Mexicanos headquarters initially blamed on a gas boiler

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)

Chuck Hagel was chosen by Obama because they agree war is always a last resort

Veterans of the Drip will remember that we flagged up a brilliant piece by the New York Times' David Brooks explaining why Chuck Hagel was chosen for the Pentagon. Brooks argument was simple and persuasive. The huge costs of Obamacare will put intolerable pressure on America's budget. Defence spending will need to be cut. Therefore Obama needed a Republican war veteran as political cover.

Page 3 Profile: Jacob Lew, US treasury secretary nominee

The man to replace Tim Geithner?

Book critics vie for Hatchet Job of the Year award

They might be much-lauded grandees of the literary world, but Martin Amis, Salman Rushdie and Naomi Wolf were all gleefully cut down to size by acid-tongued reviewers last year. The critics responsible are now vying for their own honour: that of Hatchet Job of the Year.

A poll shows more Americans favour stronger gun laws after the Newtown massacre

More Americans favour strong gun laws after Newtown

Stronger gun laws are favoured by 58 percent of Americans, the highest percentage in eight years, according to a national poll conducted after 20 elementary school students were gunned down in Newtown, Connecticut.

Mark and Debra Tice, the parents of Austin Tice, an American journalist who has been missing in Syria since August 2012

Captive reporter's family pleads for release

The family of American freelance journalist Austin Tice, who was taken captive in August while covering the Syrian civil war, appealed Thursday for his release, saying loved ones yearn to have him home for the holidays.

Romney's campaign expenses came in at $45m

Rip-off Romney: How it cost $1,000 a day to follow Mitt

What price a night with Mitt Romney? Now you could probably have a Michelin-starred dinner with change from £100 (Mitt doesn't drink) but when the 2012 US Presidential election was at its epoch back in October, you wouldn't get much change from $1,000 (£615). And you'd have to share your meal with Romney's exhausted campaign staff.

Pentagon builds military network to rival the CIA

The Pentagon is planning a major expansion of America's international spy network, creating a new generation of undercover agents to get a better handle on critical issues such as China's growing military might and the rising influence of fundamentalist militants in Africa.

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Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'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
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