News Bush in Baghdad - 2 Shoes, Size 10

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LowlyPion

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Salon said:
Monday, Dec. 15, 2008 11:50 EST
Shoe-thrower's brother steps up

Maythem al-Zaidi, the 28-year-old brother of Muntader al-Zaidi, the man who threw his shoes at President Bush during a Sunday press conference, has spoken up to explain and defend his brother's actions. From the New York Times:

Hitting someone with a shoe is a particularly strong rebuke in Iraqi culture. Although the president was uninjured, the incident overshadowed media coverage of the trip in the Arab world. And it has transformed Muntader al-Zaidi into a symbolic figure in the debate about the American military’s presence in Iraq.

Maythem al-Zaidi said his brother had not planned to throw his shoes prior to Sunday. “He was provoked when Mr. Bush said [during the news conference] this is his farewell gift to the Iraqi people,” he said. A colleague of Muntader al-Zaidi’s at al-Baghdadiya satellite channel, however, said the correspondent had been “planning for this from a long time. He told me that his dream is to hit Bush with shoes,” said the man, who would not give his name.

Muntader al-Zaidi appears to have a long-standing dislike of the United States presence in Iraq. He used to finish his reports by saying he was in "the occupied Baghdad." His brother said that he hates the occupation so strongly that he canceled his wedding, saying: "I will marry when the occupation is over . . ."

Muntader al-Zaidi was the head of the student union under Saddam Hussein and he earned a diploma as a mechanic from a technical institute before becoming a journalist. He worked at al-Qasim al-Mushterek newspaper, an Iraqi daily founded after the 2003 invasion, then he joined al-Diyar satellite channel, an Iraqi channel founded after the war. Two years later, he joined al-Baghdadiya satellite channel, another Iraqi channel, which is based in Cairo.

Maythem al-Zaidi contacted a judge to ask him if what his brother did is a crime under Iraqi law. The judge told him that he might serve two years in prison or pay a fine for insulting a president of foreign country unless Mr. Bush withdrew the case. “If they manage to imprison Muntader, there are millions of him all over Iraq and the Arab world,” Maythem al-Zaidi said.

Maythem al-Zaidi said has been contacted from about 100 Iraqi and foreign lawyers offering their services free of charge — including Saddam Hussein’s lawyer Khalil al-Dulaymi. When asked if he will accept Mr. al-Dulaymi’s services, he replied, “Why not, we are all Iraqis.”
http://www.salon.com/politics/war_room/?last_story=/politics/war_room/2008/12/15/shoe_brother/
 
A

AhmedEzz

Hello there,

I was surprised this morning when I read this in the newspaper and I couldn't help myself from laughing. The act is very symbolic rather than an assault; he didn't want to hurt him, he wanted to express his deepest disrespect and disgust for Bush. I believe that after what Bush did to Iraq and the Iraqi people, give anyone a chance of throwing a shoe at him (or do anything to express his feelings) & put aside the fear of torture and death, he would not hesitate to do it.
Nonetheless, I don't support this act but I sympathize with the reporter.
I would also like to say that when the reporter did this, he certainly meant Bush.
 
D

devil-fire

No, Art. A journalist does not go around trying to harm heads of state. There is no excuse for what he did. NONE. NOT ONE. NONE.
I think that when a person sees streets full of their countrymen's blood, guts and body parts regularly for several years, they would lose respect for the sanctity of the leader of the country that perpetrated such gore.

"excuse"? I don't think anyone is saying or implying that the shoe-thrower should be excused of any reasonable consequences of his actions such as losing his job, being condemned by bush supporters, being put on the terrorist watch list, etc. However, some people are saying that the consequences won't make the person regret his actions


Did Bush personally tell you this?

Folks: Please stop making statements as if they were matter of fact.
Generally the only "facts" in politics are history. For example it isn't a fact that if a terrorist set off a nuke in down town New York that it would change American foreign policy, but claiming that it isn't a "matter of fact" won't do much to convince people it wouldn't happen.

As much as I don't like Bush, no one. NO ONE, is allowed to assult the president. Under no circumstancse. Ever.
What does this have to do with anything? Are you implying that there should be some kind of repercussions for assaulting Bush because of his special status as president?
 

BobG

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Middle Easterners probably find it a little puzzling that the news stations keep showing replays over and over, just because it's so entertaining to watch Bush ducking shoes. I expect an internet game based on this within days - similar in spirit to the internet game, "Slap Hillary", that was going around years ago.
Well, this is a pretty http://www.t-enterprise.co.uk/flashgame/playgame.aspx?id=bushbootcamp [Broken]. They obviously adapted it from something else. You try to shoot the shoes before they hit Pres Bush. You should try to avoid shooting Pres Bush, too.

This is one has no challenge to it at all. Bush does have a dumb expression, though.http://www.jdr.ma/game/index.html [Broken]
 
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What do you mean "work in some kind of pardon"? I wasn't aware that this incident happened on US soil, where the president has power.
that's why i used the weasel words "some kind". however, note that "sovereign" is also a weasel word. native american nations are also sovereign, but we don't let them grow hemp on their own land. neither do we yet let the iraqis do anything they want. we put up a public front, but it's just PR. they are occupied territory, just like the japanese were, and we'll hand back full control in good time.
 
A

Alfi

You could never get such a thing passed. What "crimes" were comitted?
Are you going to argue he lied by taking us into war?
Yep, I would. I believe lies were told and actions were taken that should not have happened.
A full inquest would satisfy me.
Could be shoes would not be that last thing thrown at him.
 

cristo

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Yep, I would. I believe lies were told and actions were taken that should not have happened.
A full inquest would satisfy me.
Could be shoes would not be that last thing thrown at him.
Stick to the topic being discussed here. This comment is massively offtopic, and continuing to discuss it will inevitably result in this thread being locked.
 
W

WarPhalange

It would have been funny if Bush threw his own shoes back at the guy.
 
D

drankin

It would have been funny if Bush threw his own shoes back at the guy.
I'm trying to think of a president that would do that... maybe Reagan would have?
 

LowlyPion

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I'm trying to think of a president that would do that... maybe Reagan would have?
Likely Andrew Jackson would have waded into the audience and beat the guy over the head with the shoes he threw.

There was an assassination attempt against Jackson and the gun misfired and he went after the man and had to be restrained. But then again he survived a few duels. Not many modern Presidents deal with issues of honor in that way.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Jackson#Attack_and_assassination_attempt
 

BobG

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I wonder what kind of shoes they were. A pair of Nunn Bush Lincolns would have been a good choice.

From the reviews, it takes a while to break them in, but they last forever and even women like them.
 
T

tchitt

Barney Frank is right.
L.O.L.

Apparently he's moving to the Dallas area next month so he can be close to his library planning at SMU. This is his idea of community service after leaving office?
I'm so tired of all you cry babies spouting off about how HORRIBLE dubya is at every aspect of reality and taking any chance to anonymously laugh out loud at him and crap on everything he's done, doing, or will do. What would you rather he do? The POTUS is pretty much the highest form of community service any given citizen could perform.

I'm just pointing this out so before you shoot back at me with something like "YEAH, WELL HE DID A BAD JOB THO.", just save it... this isn't the topic and that topic's been done to death. Everywhere.

I'm trying to think of a president that would do that... maybe Reagan would have?
Totally. Reagan was the man.
 
S

seycyrus

I've seen reports that the shoe-thrower is not in the best shape. broken ribs and such. Any ideas on whether he received such treatment from the US or Iraqui forces?
 

BobG

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I've seen reports that the shoe-thrower is not in the best shape. broken ribs and such. Any ideas on whether he received such treatment from the US or Iraqui forces?
He left a trail of blood behind as he was dragged out of the room, so it's possible all (or at least most) of the injuries were sustained while he was being subdued. Whether it was Secret Service or Iraqi security that subdued him, I couldn't tell you.

A little extreme for throwing a shoe, but security isn't going to be too worried about an attacker's health when they're protecting a head of state from a threat (possible assassination would probably be an exaggeration in this instance, but an attack is an attack).
 
D

devil-fire

Could someone link to reports of the guy getting beat up and leaving a trail of blood?

I expect it would be the Iraqi security, if anyone. It would make the president look like a thug if the secret service beat someone to a pulp just as a matter of spite.
 

LowlyPion

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BBC said:
Shoe thrower 'beaten in custody'
Shoes thrown at George Bush
Muntadar al-Zaidi was wrestled to the ground and dragged away

The brother of the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at US President George W Bush has said that the reporter has been beaten in custody.

Muntadar al-Zaidi has suffered a broken hand, broken ribs and internal bleeding, as well as an eye injury, his older brother, Dargham, told the BBC.

Mr Zaidi threw his shoes at Mr Bush at a news conference, calling him "a dog".

The head of Iraq's journalists' union told the BBC that officials told him Mr Zaidi was being treated well.

The union head, Mouyyad al-Lami, said he hoped to visit his colleague later.

An Iraqi official said Mr Zaidi had been handed over to the judicial authorities, according to the AFP news agency.

Earlier, Dargham al-Zaidi told the BBC's Caroline Wyatt in Baghdad he believed his brother had been taken to a US military hospital in the Iraqi capital.

A second day of rallies in support of Mr Zaidi have been held across Iraq, calling for his release.

Meanwhile, offers to buy the shoes are being made around the Arab world, reports say.

Hero figure

Mr Zaidi told our correspondent that despite offers from many lawyers his brother has not been given access to a legal representative since being arrested by forces under the command of Mowaffaq al-Rubaie, Iraq's national security adviser.

We hope the government and judiciary consider his release because he has a family and he is still young
Mouyyad al-Lami, Iraqi journalists' union

The Iraqi authorities have said the 28-year-old will be prosecuted under Iraqi law, although it is not yet clear what the charges might be.

Iraqi lawyers have speculated that he could face charges of insulting a foreign leader and the Iraqi Prime Minister, Nouri Maliki, who was standing next to President Bush during the incident. The offence carries a maximum penalty of two years in jail.

Our correspondent says that the previously little-known journalist from the private Cairo-based al-Baghdadia TV has become a hero to many, not just in Iraq but across the Arab world, for what many saw as a fitting send-off for a deeply unpopular US president.

As he flung the shoes, Mr Zaidi shouted: "This is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog."

Dargham al-Zaidi told the BBC that his brother deliberately bought Iraqi-made shoes, which were dark brown with laces. They were bought from a shop on al-Khyam street, a well-known shopping street in central Baghdad.

However, not everyone in Iraq has been supportive of the journalist's action.

Speaking earlier in Baghdad, Mouyyad al-Lami described Mr Zaidi's action as "strange and unprofessional", but urged Mr Maliki to show compassion.

"Even if he has made a mistake, the government and the judiciary are broad-minded and we hope they consider his release because he has a family and he is still young," he told the Associated Press news agency.

"We hope this case ends before going to court."

Abducted by insurgents

The shoes themselves are said to have attracted bids from around the Arab world.

According to unconfirmed newspaper reports, the former coach of the Iraqi national football team, Adnan Hamad, has offered $100,000 (£65,000) for the shoes, while a Saudi citizen has apparently offered $10m (£6.5m).

Muntadar al-Zaidi (file image)
Mr Zaidi said his actions were for Iraqi widows and orphans
The daughter of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Aicha, said her charity would honour the reporter with a medal of courage, saying his action was a "victory for human rights".

The charity called on the media to support Mr Zaidi and put pressure on the Iraqi government to free him.

Mr Zaidi, who lives in Baghdad, has worked for al-Baghdadia for three years.

Muzhir al-Khafaji, programming director for the channel, described him as a "proud Arab and an open-minded man".

He said that Mr Zaidi was a graduate of communications from Baghdad University.

"He has no ties with the former regime. His family was arrested under Saddam's regime," he said.

Mr Zaidi has previously been abducted by insurgents and held twice for questioning by US forces in Iraq.

In November 2007 he was kidnapped by a gang on his way to work in central Baghdad and released three days later without a ransom.

He said at the time that the kidnappers had beaten him until he lost consciousness, and used his necktie to blindfold him.

Mr Zaidi never learned the identity of his kidnappers, who questioned him about his work before letting him go.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7785338.stm
 

mheslep

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..Our correspondent says that the previously little-known journalist from the private Cairo-based al-Baghdadia TV has become a hero to many, not just in Iraq but across the Arab world, for what many saw as a fitting send-off for a deeply unpopular US president.
Sigh. I used to be merely tired of these claims, though now its evolved into amusement, from some 'correspondent' who claims he can survey the entire world, and relay the opinion of the 'many', within 24 hours of an event from their barstool in the local press watering hole.
 
D

DropGems

Was the guy wearing a Che Guevara shirt as well? Pretty original to show disdain for Bush these days.

Bush should make sure the journalist doesn't get arrested or charged and should send him a bottle of champagne with a little note saying something along the lines of, "Enjoy exercising your new acquired freedoms. ps: Your throw sucks. Loser! Dubya out"
 
W

WarPhalange

Was the guy wearing a Che Guevara shirt as well? Pretty original to show disdain for Bush these days.
Pretty original to show disdain for Hitler these days as well. Gee, I wonder why?

Bush should make sure the journalist doesn't get arrested or charged and should send him a bottle of champagne with a little note saying something along the lines of, "Enjoy exercising your new acquired freedoms. ps: Your throw sucks. Loser! Dubya out"
He could send the man a new pair of shoes with his signature on them.
 
W

WarPhalange

The POTUS is pretty much the highest form of community service any given citizen could perform.
Someone needs to tell him that. With all of his "executive privilege" and "I don't care what people think about the war, I think it's right." Not much community service going on there.

Totally. Reagan was the man.
:rolleyes:

A little extreme for throwing a shoe, but security isn't going to be too worried about an attacker's health when they're protecting a head of state from a threat (possible assassination would probably be an exaggeration in this instance, but an attack is an attack).
There was no telling if this was just some crazy guy or the start of an actual attack. The SS should get 10 lashes for taking that long to respond, though. Nobody even jumped in front of the president to take a shoe to the chest for him.
 
S

seycyrus

BobG

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There was no telling if this was just some crazy guy or the start of an actual attack. The SS should get 10 lashes for taking that long to respond, though. Nobody even jumped in front of the president to take a shoe to the chest for him.
Yes, they did. Watch the video. After the second shoe was thrown, the Secret Service guy is right there. If the reporter had three feet, the Secret Service guy would have been all over it and would have taken one for the Prez.

Pretty embarrassing for the Secret Service. Secret Service Defends Shoe Response

I would expect that changes will be made. From now on, all reporters at press conferences will have to remove their shoes. I imagine a side effect is that reporters will ask much easier questions. It's tough to ask hardball questions when you're barefoot, plus who wants to discover that building staff has accidently spilled their Starbucks in your shoe; or the house cat has found a new litterbox. Going shoeless creates a whole new dynamic for reporters.

Whatever happens, this definitely tops Nikita Kruschev's shoe incident.
 
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W

WarPhalange

Yes, they did. Watch the video. After the second (emphasis mine) shoe was thrown, the Secret Service guy is right there. If the reporter had three feet, the Secret Service guy would have been all over it and would have taken one for the Prez.
Not good enough. All it takes is one shoe to kill someone. They need to watch more "24" as part of the SS training.

I would expect that changes will be made. From now on, all reporters at press conferences will have to remove their shoes. I imagine a side effect is that reporters will ask much easier questions. It's tough to ask hardball questions when you're barefoot, plus who wants to discover that building staff has accidently spilled their Starbucks in your shoe; or the house cat has found a new litterbox. Going shoeless creates a whole new dynamic for reporters.
Going shoeless is a bit barbaric. I expect that reporters will have to store their shoes in lockers and be given out ultra-light foam flip-flops that cannot fly past 1m without being stopped by air resistance. This will probably go for all White House staff, as well.

Well, no sane person would compare Bush to Hitler.
Irrelevant. My point was sometimes people are hated because they deserve to be hated.

EDIT:

I'd also like to add:

iraqimage001.gif


One more if it's okay:

3112940773_07b4fd2613_o.jpg
 

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LowlyPion

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Whatever happens, this definitely tops Nikita Kruschev's shoe incident.
No one offered any money for Khrushchev's shoe either.

I hope this guy is smart enough to demand his shoes when he is released.

If only he can get Bush to autograph the pair, they could be worth a lot more even.
 

mgb_phys

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Does this mean we are only going to be able to take 4oz or smaller shoes on planes now?
 

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