Ian Dunt

    Political journalist
  • PMQs verdict: Cameron trials his ultimate Corbyn attack

    For the first time, we got a glimpse of that much-discussed Tory strategy to make the most of Jeremy Corbyn’s time as leader. David Cameron said the message from the Corbyn camp didn’t just reflect one man. It was about the whole of the Labour party.

  • The Trump debate was a damp squib – and it's all your fault

    If there was excitement leading up to it, it died the moment Labour MP Paul Flynn opened proceedings. After him came Tory MP Paul Scully. Labour MP and husband of Harriet Harman, Jack Dromey, made a pointless series of observations with a considerable amount of self-regard.

  • The report which could destroy Britain's immigration detention centres

    The Home Office never wanted this report. It was only after a string of stories about abusive guards and sexual attacks that Stephen Shaw’s inquiry into Britain’s immigration detention centres was even commissioned. It is simply impossible to assess detainee welfare without taking into account how long they’re detained and the oppressive uncertainty of indefinite detention.

  • Supporting Corbyn is honourable – but it's becoming a conspiracy theory cult

    Jeremy Corbyn’s war with the BBC is a depressing and pointless spectacle. The current bout of fighting started last week after the resignation of Stephen Doughty, which, according to some Corbyn supporters, was timed by the BBC to maximise the Labour leader’s embarrassment. It rumbled on into this week after shadow chancellor John McDonnell told this website “the editor of the [Daily Politics] obviously decided to do maximum damage to Jeremy’s standing”.

  • One year on from Charlie Hebdo: The French government's assault on liberté

    The terrorists who stormed into the Charlie Hebdo offices one year ago today never had any chance of success. In the year since the Charlie Hebdo attack, French liberty has been placed under serious threat. What had happened was a moment of national trauma - one which seemed to directly challenge the foundations of French society: ‘Liberté, égalité, fraternité’.

  • The night Westminster strangled Corbyn's new politics

    “What [Pat McFadden has] done on a number of occasions is unfortunately distorted Jeremy’s views and turned that into almost a personalised undermining of Jeremy. Shadow chancellor John McDonnell’s comments on the Today programme this morning hammered the final nail into Jeremy Corbyn’s internal democracy project. A million years ago, in September, Corbyn had a rather different message.

  • The report which shows a terrible flaw in Cameron's refugee policy

    David Cameron’s refugee programme is simple and, on a superficial level, persuasive. On the head side, he won’t take many Syrian refugees coming on the boats to Europe or participate in any EU quota system.

  • Corbyn's honourable record on Saudi Arabia puts Cameron to shame

    Former Left Foot Forward editor James Bloodworth and others outlined a potential “realignment of the left”, in which the stale socialism of the 70s, typified by Jeremy Corbyn, could be put to one side without embracing a Blairite pro-market Third Way.

  • Does the anti-war left realise war already started?

    The decision to bomb Syria is despairingly complicated, but sometimes the most simple points need to be made. The first is that there is already a war in Syria. Iraq is such a dominant element in the thinking of many people on the left that they seem unable to disentangle the specifics of what is happening in Syria now from the specifics of what was happening in Iraq then.

  • Spending review 2015: Osborne's tricks – and how to spot them

    If by some freakish series of accidents you found yourself watching George Osborne deliver the spending review yesterday, you could have been forgiven for thinking that Britain has never had it so good. The cuts are so severe, in fact, that by 2020 departmental budgets will be at 50% of where they were when the Tories entered power in 2010. The first thing Osborne always does is ring-fence the budgets which might cause political problems down the line.

  • Even when Britain's youth prisons improve, they fail

    This is what improvement looks like in Britain’s crumbling young offenders’ estate: young boys not leaving their cells for 23 hours a day for fear of violence, widespread hunger and regular solitary confinement. “Violence appears to be a fact of daily life in Feltham prison, and putting children into solitary confinement appears to be the management tool deployed in an attempt to contain it,” Frances Crook, chief executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform, says. "We know about another 17-year-old locked in his cell with no contact with any other children, and with no idea of what he had to do to get back to a normal regime.

  • No one 'banned' the Church of England ad – they're making it up

    There is no ban on Christian advertising, just like there is no ban on people wearing crucifixes at work or whatever other bizarre fantasy the Church of England has come up with. Here’s what happened: A commercial agency decided a Church of England ad might upset paying customers going to the cinema so it decided not to take it. Then the Church of England played an absolute blinder of a press strategy and got themselves on the front of the Mail, the Times and all over the BBC.

  • Farage's Paris speech shows he doesn't understand France or Islam or refugees

    It’s quite rare that a leading politician issues a speech which is so magnificently factually wrong as the one Nigel Farage delivered last night. Hilariously, Ukip sources were spinning the event as “the most important intervention from a mainstream politician in the UK on the subject of Syria and the UK’s security situation”.

  • Opportunism on left and right make us accomplices in Isis' terror

    In the wake of a terror attack, patience and calm are our virtue. They are the precise opposite of what terrorists want. They want panic, quick-decisions and change. That, after all, is the purpose of terrorism: propaganda through violence in the pursuit of policy change. We are very good at making it easy for them.

  • May is starting to implement her poisonous immigration speech

    Theresa May went on stage and spat poison about asylum seekers and immigrants. A day later, David Cameron came on stage and was all sweetness and light. As the immigration lawyer and analyst Colin Yeo has spotted, the rules imply that May is carrying out her threat to limit the amount of time refugees can stay in the UK.

  • Another Corbyn victory: Is Cameron now the underdog at PMQs?

    Jeremy Corbyn won PMQs again, just like he did last week and the week before. If he keeps this up, he’ll be considered the default winner of PMQs and it’ll be a shock when David Cameron comes out on top. Corbyn started, really quite satisfyingly it has to be said, by again asking the same question he tried six times last week: could Cameron guarantee no-one facing tax credit cuts would be worse off?

  • Terrorists are the only people who won't be affected by May's surveillance plans

    As with all intrusions into British people’s privacy, the surveillance powers being proposed by Theresa May today are justified on the grounds of defeating terrorism. If media reports are accurate – the full proposal will finally be unveiled this afternoon in the Commons after extensive briefings over the last two weeks - the government has dropped plans to ban encryption technology. Doing so would mean that either companies like Amazon and Apple, which use encryption, would have to drop it because David Cameron said so.

  • PMQs verdict: Corbyn just hammered Cameron

    This was the PMQs defeat Jeremy Corbyn had been threatening to deliver to the prime minister since he became Labour leader. If you ask how he is going to protect those who are having their tax credits cut, he answers by saying we need a high-pay, low-welfare economy. You ask how he is going to protect those who are having their tax credits cut and he answers by citing changes to the income tax benchmark or rising employment figures.

  • PMQs verdict: Corbyn's lack of focus lets Cameron off the hook

    The really impressive thing about Jeremy Corbyn during PMQs is his confidence. It’s not easy to control the Commons chamber. You don’t pick it up on TV because only the mic closest to the person speaking is switched on, but the place is a pit of noise, with barracking and mockery coming from all directions. Most people hoping to quieten down the Chamber fail to do so. They wait for a silence which never comes.

  • Milne appointment shows Corbyn has no interest reaching past his core support

    Jeremy Corbyn’s decision to hire Guardian columnist Seumas Milne as his executive director of strategy and communications reflects two of his weaknesses. The first is a dismissal of communications. The second is a lack of interest in reaching past his core support.