‘This week’s encounter between the German and Greek finance ministers has been reported with a pleasing simplicity, as Europe’s leading deficit hawk Wolfgang Schäuble and the libertarian Marxist Yanis Varoufakis could not even agree to disagree after their meeting. The tone of their joint press conference was, however, strikingly polite and even warm, despite sharp differences of view on how to deal with the Greek crisis.’ Photograph:   Krisztian Bocsi/Bloomberg

‘The Taoiseach’s hardline rhetoric on Greece is short-sighted, because the consequences of failing to strike a deal with the new (...)

‘A spectre is haunting Europe – the spectre of Syriza’. Above, Alexis Tsipras, leader of the Syriza party, speaking to his supporters at a pre-election party congress in Athens, last week.  Photographer: Kostas Tsironis/Bloomberg

European Debt Conference based on the 1953 London Conference that aided Germany

‘The Senate report has lifted the lid on just one element of the disastrous “global war on terror” unleashed by the Bush administration after 9/11. In doing so, US lawmakers have gone further than their counterparts in Europe’s national parliaments – indeed, Poland only finally admitted this week that it had hosted one of the CIA’s secret prisons.’ Photograph: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA

Conclusions of Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on the CIA’s torture programme are devastating

An armoured water truck cleans the street of debris after the East German government ordered construction work to strengthen the border crossing at Heinrich-Heine- Strasse (aka Checkpoint Delta) on the Berlin Wall, December 4th, 1961 A car drives between US tanks, in October 1961, across the famous borderof the US sector in Berlin, at Checkpoint Charlie crossing point which was used by diplomats and foreigners
How the Wall was built

'Berlin was an anomaly and the Soviets were eager to incorporate the city into their German satellite state'

Thousands of young East Berliners on the Berlin Wall, near the Brandenburg Gate on November 11th, 1989.

Berlin 25: Fall of the Wall 25th anniversary

A gay couple strolling past the graffiti on a remaining section of the Berlin Wall in  August 1993. Photo: Steve Eason/Getty Images)

Lack of economic pressure and a sense of being cut off from the surrounding world encouraged creative experimentation in 1980s Wes(...)

US president Barack Obama meets his national security and public health teams in the Roosevelt Room at the White House yesterday. Photograph:  Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The voters are mad as hell, writes Denis Staunton

A view of the northern Gaza Strip as seen from the Israeli farming community of Netiv Haasara last month. Photograph: Amir Cohen/Reuters

The latest violence in Gaza seemed to suggest that criticism be damned: Israel would do whatever it felt necessary to defend itsel(...)

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