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William Cook

Is there any better place for an EU-subsidized arts festival than Galway?

I hoped my flight would be canceled but we left right on time

By William Cook


Welder, banjo player, comedian, actor, and now artist — Billy Connolly interviewed

Britain’s greatest comic story-teller discusses growing up in Glasgow, ditching the mike stand and living with Parkinson’s

By William Cook

I’m walking round the country — in my back garden

This land used to be an orchard. These trees were here before I was here. They’ll be here after I’m gone

By William Cook


Isolation forces us to work out what really matters

In tough times, people often discover their dauntlessness

By William Cook

I watched Jadon Sancho grow up. That’s why I know he’s the next soccer megastar

Even at the age of eight, it was clear that this London-born player would be something special

By William Cook


Auberon Waugh — a demon on the page, an angel off it

A Scribbler in Soho: A Celebration of Auberon Waugh reviewed

By William Cook

Donald Trump is wrong about Germany being a ‘captive’ of Russia

“What good is Nato if Germany is paying Russia billions of dollars for gas and energy?” tweeted Donald Trump on 11 July. Trump was surely referring to Nord Stream 2, the controversial deal between Russia and Germany, whereby Russia will pump natural gas direct to Germany through a new pipeline across the Baltic Sea. Trump […]

By William Cook

On Germany, Trump is right about big picture, wrong on detail

Time was, a US President wouldn’t dream of criticising the government of one of its Nato allies in public – but that was a long, long time ago, before the Age of Trump. ‘The people of Germany are turning against their leadership as migration is rocking the already tenuous Berlin coalition,’ tweeted President Trump yesterday. […]

By William Cook


Are Macron and Merkel playing good cop, bad cop with Trump?

For France and Germany, the contrast could scarcely be starker. For three days Emmanuel Macron was wooed and fêted by Donald Trump, treated to marching bands and banquets. Today, Angela Merkel made a brief two-and-a-half hour stop-off at the White House, then flew away again. So does this mean President Macron is Trump’s New Best […]

By William Cook

What Brexit Britain can learn from German Reunification

Obscured by the hubbub of rolling news and the cacophony of Twitter, an important anniversary has passed by virtually unnoticed. The Berlin Wall has now been down for longer than it was up. Berlin’s ‘Anti-Fascist Protection Barrier’ (as the Communists used to call it) stood for 28 years and three months, from August 1961 to […]

By William Cook

Angela Merkel is back in office but not back in power

How did she do it? How has Angela Merkel hung on for a fourth term as German Chancellor after being written off so many times? When she’s sworn in as Bundeskanzlerin today it’ll be nearly thirteen years since she became leader of the Bundesrepublik. She’s been read the last rites so often, yet after almost […]

By William Cook

The lesson of the Berlin Wall: capitalism works

It is now 28 years and three months since the Wall came down. For Europeans and Americans, this is a pivotal moment in world history. Berlin has now been reunited for longer than it was divided. So where does the German capital and the German nation stand, a generation since that ecstatic November evening? Has […]

By William Cook

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