It was a pleasure to have the award-winning French journalist Nabila Ramdani visit us to address the Middle Eastern and Modern Languages Societies on the topic of ‘British and French policy in the Middle East’. She gave a fantastic insight into the various factors that have driven French and British foreign policy in the region, especially national interest and a desire for stability. Ms Ramdani also described how, at various points in modern history, French and British competition for the greatest slice of the Middle Eastern gâteau has affected lives, borders and political developments within the region. In more recent decades, local aspirations for independence and democracy continued to be undermined, particularly through Western cooperation with military rulers in countries such as Egypt. After the talk, there followed a lively question and answer session, involving boys from Eton, members of the local community and pupils from other schools. We would like to thank Ms Ramdani for ensuring that this was an informative and thought-provoking evening. Tom Robson (RDO-C)