Phew! After last week's painless affair this week's puzzle was a real beast! t's by Paul and contains a "capital" theme.
I groaned when I first saw all the 'capital' references as geography is really not my strong point but, in all honesty, there's not much geography required and the little bit that is can be got from Google.
I recommend going all out to solve 14a as this contains an instruction as to how to treat several other clues. It's not that difficult as you know that, if the answer contains the "capital of Lebanon (twice) bombed", and is 7 letters long then you need just one more letter to fit the definition of "returned to ............".
Oh, and I actually spotted a "Pauline" clue, perhaps two with the excellent 21a. and "cheeky" 13a:-)
My FOI was the obvious anagram at 5d although I couldn't find the answer in the usual online anagram solvers.
There's still one clue I'm not sure about and that's 22d even though I have all the crossers but hopefully I'll have a PDM before too long.
COD - Lots to choose from with the aforementioned 21a and 13a plus the witty 16d but I'm going with well constructed 22a.
If you do get stuck you only have to post your query on here - we have posters in several different time-zones so there are always people around willing to help.