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Latest update : 2011-08-18

Eye witness accounts of the Syrian repression which continues on multiple fronts

Eye witness accounts of the Syrian repression which continues on multiple fronts. Spanish web users comment on the World Youth Day celebrations. Two pro golfers in a game of urban golf.

Syrian repression continues on multiple fronts

Despite repeated appeals from the international community asking the Syrian regime to end the violent crackdown on protesters, the repression continues on multiple fronts and even appears to be intensifying. The cities of Hama, Latakia and also Deraa are currently under siege by troops loyal to President al-Assad.

Reports of this particularly tense situation are being relayed on the web. A lot of amateur video footage is circulating on sharing sites, illustrating the atmosphere which prevails in these cities, with violent clashes between soldiers and rebels. Here we can see soldiers patrolling the streets of Hama, in western Syria, which as these images suggest, have been deserted by residents. Other videos like this one are said to show the different type of ammunition the soldiers have been using in the crackdown.

Although difficult to verify, these images from the port city of Latakia, suggest soldiers have been using heavy weapons against protesters in the besieged cities. It would seem that troops have been deployed en masse to Latakia, and in these online videos we see armored vehicles and soldiers moving around the city center.

There is also a highly visible military presence in the Hauran region, and in particular near to the city of Deraa in south western Syria. These images were posted online by rebels, we can see that a number of tanks have been strategically positioned across Deraa, and make shift road blocks have been set up to monitor the inhabitants’ comings and goings.

 

World youth day

With around one and a half million Catholics expected for the World Youth Day events taking place in Madrid until the 21st of August, Spanish web users have been voicing their opposition online, denouncing the cost of the event which is estimated at somewhere between 55 and 62 million euros. Many feel this is an exorbitant figure for a country which is near to bankruptcy.

An online petition has been launched by a movement which uses the slogan « no con mis impuestos », meaning « Not with my taxes ». It has already been signed by over 11 000 web users who state that they have nothing against the country holding such an event nor against the Pope’s visit, but Spanish tax payers refuse to pay for it, especially in these times of economic crisis.

A march was organized in the streets of the Spanish capital on Wednesday to protest against the costs involved in the celebrations. It was largely coordinated online via social media sites and on Facebook in particular.

But the Vatican has also been making great use of the web to try and attract as many young people as possible to the World Youth Day festivities. The official website is providing a great deal of information on the various events taking place in Madrid and is also broadcasting videos of the friendly atmosphere prevailing in the capital. Great use is being made of social networks so that web users do not miss a single detail of this global event.

And to ensure Catholics from all over the world feel involved in the World Youth Day celebrations, a group of 80 volunteers will travel around Madrid on the Bus 2.0 to update social networks in 20 different languages.

 

What is the profile of a hacker?

French website Owni.fr has developed an infographic based on the findings of a hacker study carried out in over 90 different countries. We find out the average hacker is 31 years old, that there is an overwhelming majority of male hackers born in Europe or North America, and they devote around 10 hours a week to their online activity.

 

Hiroshima after atomic bomb

The site “360cities.net” has posted an astounding picture online. It’s a panoramic image of what was left of the city of Hiroshima in Japan after the atomic bomb was dropped in 1945. This historical project immerses web users in the desolation and destruction.

 

Video of the day

Cameron Tringale and Rickie Fowler, two American pro golfers came up with an interesting way of finding out who has the best repertoire of shots. They organized a game of urban golf in Atlanta city center. The rules were particularly simple, they just had to get as close as they could to three different holes, using just one ball each time. What did they win? Well the two golfers share an apartment so the loser had to do all the washing up and housework for an entire month.

 

By Electron Libre

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