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Afghanistan: the US President’s hesitations are causing waves online

Latest update : 2009-10-08

In this edition: Net users comment upon Obama’s hesitation over the strategy to adopt in Afghanistan. The former Costa Rican President convicted of corruption. A trial widely followed online...


The US President’s hesitations are causing waves online. The staff office is requesting the dispatch of additional troops to Afghanistan. But Barack Obama seems to be undecided about the strategy needed to end these eight years of conflict.


This video blogger does not seem to understand this hesitation. For him, the President of a country at war should demonstrate bravery and provide its army with all it needs for victory. He believes more troops should be sent to Afghanistan.


A point of view shared by this compatriot, critical of his President’s cowardice. According to him Obama would prefer to allow soldiers to die in Afghanistan rather than send in reinforcements and turn a section of the anti-military left against him.


However, more and more Americans seem to want their soldiers to be sent home quickly. A protest march calling for the end of the war was organised this week in front of the White House, as shown by this video available online.


The site ‘Democracy’ is broadcasting extracts of a documentary on the war in Afghanistan in which we hear civilians and victims of fighting, also demanding an end to the conflict and the withdrawal of foreign troops from the country.

Meanwhile, this blogger feels that Obama’s hesitations are legitimate. According to him, extra troops would not offer any additional guarantee of stability in the country. He asserts that the most pragmatic decision would be to exit the war zone as soon as possible.




Here are images of the trial of the former Costa Rican President, Rafael Calderon. On Monday over 14,000 Costa Ricans witnessed the verdict being announced live online. The last hours of the long trial were broadcast via streaming on several local sites.


The former President, in power from 1990 to 1994, was sentenced to five years in prison for corruption, a first for a former head of state in this Central American country. He is accused of having received hundreds of thousands of dollars in illegal commission.


The Costa Rican people, who have not forgotten the scandal, broadcast their impressions about the trial live on Twitter. Some also sent in images via the web such as here on Twit pic.


This journalist posted an audio extract on her account, in which we hear the former President expressing his hopes about the verdict, a few hours before it was announced.


A verdict which has led Calderon to renounce his political ambitions as pointed out by this blogger. Calderon will no longer be able to run for the 2010 Presidential elections. 


One of the Presidential candidates reacted on Youtube straight after the trail. Otton Solis, from the ‘Citizen Action’ party, applauded the court’s decision. According to him, this case will only be the visible tip of the iceberg in terms of corruption in the country.


In the US, the criminal justice department of Texas holds precise records on its website of men sentenced to death and executed. Apart from their age, sex, nationality and crime committed, from now on net users will be able to consult the final words uttered by the 441 prisoners executed since 1982. Many proclaim their innocence such as this man, executed on March 3, 2009 for shooting an elderly lady during a break-in. Some express remorse and dedicate their last words to their victims. Others renounce this right.


Here is a new kind of auction site. On Auction TV, net users must post a video of the object they wish to sell online. A way to avoid buyers having a nasty surprise when they receive their parcel. And this is not all. The site has online auction rooms, where the five best bidders can battle it out via webcam to obtain the object of their desires.


This is an anti-solitude cushion. German designer, Stefan Ulrich created it to soothe those who feel alone. Funktionide is a kind of robot whose shape changes depending on the way in which you hold it, thanks to an artificial muscle system. As shown by this video of a man and his Funktionide, the soft, smooth object seems almost to be breathing. 20



Date created : 2009-10-08