The power of a good interview to shed light on the personalities and themes driving the news agenda was demonstrated clearly in the year of tumult that has been 2016.
As geopolitical shocks spread, a roll call of politicians, business leaders, celebrities and cultural figures sat down with the Financial Times to share their thoughts.
In the UK, Theresa May revealed some insights into her brisk management style as the country’s new prime minister. Nigel Farage, the Ukip leader who campaigned for Brexit, left one FT journalist a little worse for wear after a Lunch with the FT involving six pints of beer, a bottle of wine and two glasses of port.
Elsewhere, Edward Snowden, the whistleblower, told Alan Rusbridger, former Guardian editor, about his wariness of his Russian hosts. James Baker, the Republican party grandee, spoke of his confidence in the “system of checks and balances” that restrain a president in power. Martin Shkreli, the entrepreneur who became the personification of corporate greed in a series of drug pricing scandals, suggested he had become a “victim of editing”. Vijay Mallya, the tycoon branded a “fugitive from justice” by the Indian government, spoke of his forced exile.
These were just some of the best FT interviews of the year:
Interview by Henry Mance
Interview by David Crow
Interview by Lionel Barber
‘I can’t fix the human rights situation in Russia, and realistically my priority is to fix my own country first, because that’s the one to which I owe the greatest loyalty. But though the chances are it will make no difference, maybe it’ll help.’
Interview by Alan Rusbridger
Interview by George Parker and Lionel Barber
‘One of the businesses I was involved in failed, sadly . . . There were other businesses that still exist, which are hugely successful. Should I, therefore, be a hypocrite? Because one of these businesses failed, should I live my life differently? It is what it is. I am not a hypocrite.’
Interview by Amy Kazmin and Lionel Barber
Interview by Roula Khalaf
Interview by Rochelle Toplensky
Interview by Robin Harding and Lionel Barber
‘I believed in Eisenhower and the American way. I questioned it after Vietnam because I was numbed out from the experience. I saw a series of screw-ups that were bureaucratic and typical of an elephant among mice.’
Interview by Janan Ganesh
Interview by David Pilling
Interview by Joe Leahy
Interview by George Parker
Interview by Charles Clover
Interview by Jamil Anderlini
Other notable interviews:
Sample the FT’s top stories for a week
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