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President Barack Obama delivering his state of the union address in Washington, DC, Tuesday 12 February 2013. Photograph: Charles Dharapak/AP
President Obama's state of the union address: fair enough but forgettable
As an agenda, it was impressive. Jobs, immigration reform, climate change, equal pay for women, the minimum wage, troop withdrawal, universal pre-school provision for the poor, gun control, voting reform – this was unapologetic in its liberalism and unstinting in its determination.


Shirley Chambers, whose four children all died from gun violence, at the funeral of her son. Photograph: John Gress/Reuters
Gun violence in Chicago: a struggle for answers in Obama's hometown
On the 10th floor of the University of ­Illinois' school of public health, Dr Gary ­Slutkin points to a map of Chicago with dots showing where murders have taken place. Lake ­Michigan lies to the east, the north is mostly clear, but some areas of the south and the west, including ­Englewood, are covered in dots.


A supporter of Barack Obama
Barack Obama is pushing gun control at home, but he's a killer abroad
On 27 January CBS aired an interview with the newly inaugurated President Barack Obama and his outgoing secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, during which the president faced accusations that under his watch America had retreated from its key role in world affairs. "The biggest criticism of this team," said the interviewer," has been [that there is] an abdication of the United States on the world stage, sort of reluctance to become involved in another entanglement."


Hadiya Pendelton was shot dead in this playground shelter on January 30 in Chicago. Photograph: Charles Rex Arbogast/AP
Michelle Obama attending Chicago funeral of Hadiya Pendelton, 15
First lady Michelle Obama flies home to Chicago on Saturday morning to commemorate the short life and tragic death of 15-year-old Hadiya Pendelton, whose fatal shooting has taken on significant symbolic resonance both in the city and nationwide.
Immigration Is Not a Domestic Issue


The Rev Jesse Jackson in Chicago. Jackson said:
Jesse Jackson urges Obama to 'come home' and tackle Chicago's gun crisis
The Rev Jesse Jackson has appealed to Barack Obama to "please come home" to Chicago and address the crisis in American urban life following the fatal shooting of a teenager less than a mile from Obama's house in the city.
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Stranger in a Strange Land – Encounters in the Disunited States
book review
'It often takes an outsider to look inside. This is especially true of the United States.'
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