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News seen on the web and about the web. From Monday to Friday at 8.20 am Paris time.

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Latest update : 2014-01-13

Web users react to Ariel Sharon's death

In this edition: reactions to Ariel Sharon’s death; an American woman kept alive on life support, because she is pregnant; and a video of the soon to be launched world’s highest waterslide.

WEB USERS REACT TO ARIEL SHARON’S DEATH

“Our doctrine is that there is no mission we can’t accomplish. » This Ariel Sharon quote is being displayed on the Israeli army website, paying tribute to the former general and Prime Minister of Israel who died on Saturday after spending eight years in a coma. The piece also looks back over his military career from the 1948 war of independence to the 1973 Arab-Israeli war.

The president, Shimon Peres, has posted a series of tweets, honouring his friend who he describes as "a brave soldier and a daring leader who loved his nation and his nation loved him".

Politicians from across the globe have also being paying their respects. Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs for example, Carl Bildt, had described Ariel Sharon as a “brilliant military commander, but also a wise statesman seeing the necessity of peace”.

Reactions from Palestinians have been very different however, particularly in the Gaza strip where sweets were handed out to celebrate the death of a sworn enemy. The spokesperson for the Hamas government in Gaza, Isra Almodallal, has said Palestinians will never forgive him for what they consider to be his crimes against the Palestinian people.

The director of NGO Human Rights Watch Kenneth Roth has also spoken of his wrongdoings, saying he is disappointed that Ariel Sharon died without “facing justice for his role in the Sabra and Shatila massacres”, the two refugee camps in Beirut, Lebanon, where hundreds of Palestinian civilians were killed by Christian militia in 1982.

 

USA: MARLISE MUNOZ CASE SPARKS ONLINE DEBATE

It’s been a topic of lively debate among American web users in recent weeks … 33 year old Marlise Munoz is brain dead but since November she has being kept alive on life support machines in a Texas hospital. She is being kept alive against her own and her family’s wishes; a law in Texas is stopping them from letting her die because she is pregnant.

The majority of web users commenting on the story support Marlise Munoz’ family and condemn the Texas law that restricts doctors from ending life support to a terminally ill woman if she is pregnant, even if she is in a vegetative state. They say the legislation treats a woman’s body as an incubator and should be abolished immediately so that Marlise can die with dignity.

Abortion rights group NARAL is urging web users to sign this petition demanding the Texan law be repealed. The document states that it should be the patient and their loved ones; not politicians, making the difficult decision of whether to withdraw life support.

Other web users are saying that in this very complex scenario, it’s not just the family’s wishes that need to be considered, they say the viability of the fetus should also be taken into consideration before deciding whether or not a pregnant woman should be kept alive by artificial means. 

NOW TRENDING ON SOCIAL NETWORKS

39 year old American man Ferdinand Puentes posted one incredible pic to Facebook, taken moments after his plane crashed into the Pacific Ocean last month, off the coast of Molokai in Hawaii. Puentes’ spectacular photo has been widely relayed on social networks, with countless web users admiring what has to be the best selfie ever… 

HOAX OF THE DAY

A message has been doing the rounds on social media platforms over the past few days, directing web users to a video claiming to show Michael Schumacher’s skiing accident. But the link is actually to a site inviting you to download some free software, which is in fact a computer virus… This has been confirmed by Kaspersky that is advising web users to be wary of such videos. 

MEET BENJAMIN, THE CUTEST RABBIT ON INSTAGRAM

A rabbit taking on the role of Harry Potter or one of the Ninja turtles… meet Benjamin the bunny, who’s become something of an Instagram sensation. His owner, Lauren Gates, decks him out in costume and recreates famous movie scenes. She even selected some of the photos for a calendar available to buy on Etsy.com. 

VIDEO OF THE DAY

A breathtaking 50 meter descent, travelling at over 100 kilometers per hour … the world’s tallest waterslide will be opening in the Schlitterbahn theme park in Kansas City, the US later on this year. It’s called "Verrückt" which translates as crazy in English, and thrill seekers can get can get a sneak preview in this video recently posted online.

By Electron Libre

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