Monday 24 May 1999
"Free Reggie" is the message of this site, assembled with the help of his wife and the Krays Campaign. The terrible twins are seen in the context of a 500-year history of the East End (cue Pearly Queens, the Siege of Sidney Street, etc), followed by an illustrated account of their life and crimes. Thirty years on, Reggie has paid his dues, argues the site, and visitors can make their own views known as well as e-mailing the man himself. A merchandising section offers Kray T-shirts, and a "Blaggers Alley" has some apparently nifty, but Mac-only, little games including a tax calculator, card tricks and a random lottery generator. Links include Mad Frankie Fraser's site and, to show there's no hard feelings, the "Metropolitan Police - Working for a Better London".
Happy surfing, and Happy Birthday Saddam Hussein, are the words of welcome here. Opened on 28 April in honour of the great occasion, this Jordan- hosted site includes the online version of a weekly newspaper owned by Saddam's son, Uday. A culture section remembers Iraqi expressionist painter Layla Al-Attar, "murdered by US bombers"; the sports page covers last month's otherwise under-reported Iraqi-Russian Olympiad, and there are some black-and-white clippings from other papers on the construction of a desert resort, again in honour of the birthday boy. It's a slow download and and it may be too ambitious to try for the Real Video of the copper market in the Al Safafir Souk, apparently a top tourist attraction. More from Iraq at its official news agency (http://www.nisciraq.net/ eindex.htm), with its meticulous account of the impact of sanctions on education: one million desks, 150 million pencils and 90 million chalk sticks are urgently required. Both sites seem aimed at public opinion outside the country, since few Iraqis have Net access.
George W Bush
The latest ruse from pseudo-corporate art pranksters (R)TMark, is a seriously tweaked edition of the official page for the George W Bush Presidential Exploratory Committee. (R)TM's version apes the design of the original, and has successfully sneaked into the indexes as a real campaign site, but lists some unusual policy proposals, including a planned issue of 400,000 presidential pardons for drug offenders. The point at issue is Bush's evasive "refusal to deny" his own alleged former use of cocaine, despite advocating harsh mandatory sentences for others convicted of drug abuse. The creator of the spoof also extends the critique of double standards to the Clinton/perjury debate. According to (R)TM, the Bush team has been frantically buying up similar sounding domain names in an effort to avoid further subversion, as well as resorting to copyright lawyers and other legal strategies. The "official" site can be found at http://www. georgewbush.com.
Send your interesting, quirky, or, at a pinch, cool site recommendations to websites@ dircon.co.uk
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