Sunday, January 18, 2009

A Party for the Shoe-Thrower

I've been worried about the guy who threw his shoes at George Bush in Iraq. They knocked him down , whisked him away, and nobody heard from him for weeks. They said he was locked in solitary confinement and word was that he was being tortured.

Remember, his crime is throwing his shoes at someone. He didn't even hit him. What is that, attempted assault?

There was some good news this week, though. ABC News has this:
The Iraqi journalist jailed since throwing his shoes at President George W. Bush got a visit from his brother Friday and a birthday party from his guards as he turned 30.

Muntadhar al-Zeidi, who has gained cult status for his bizarre protest, is in good shape but has been denied access to his lawyer, relatives said after his brother Maitham visited him for two hours in his detention cell in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone.

Al-Zeidi has been in custody since the Dec. 14 outburst at Bush's joint news conference with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Thousands demonstrated for al-Zeidi's release and hailed his gesture.

But concern was raised about his welfare after allegations that he had been severely beaten and tortured in detention.

The case's investigating judge has said the journalist was struck about the face and eyes, apparently by security agents who wrestled him to the floor after he hurled his shoes, forcing Bush to duck for cover. Iraqi Guards Said to Throw Party for Shoe-Thrower

Okay, that's better. He was roughed up, probably by American Secret Service guys in Iraq, but it seems he is recognized as a hero by his countrymen, including the prison guards.
Maitham al-Zeidi was not available to comment on the visit, but another brother, Dhargham, told The Associated Press that he was told the wounds had healed.

"Muntadhar was in a good shape ... and his morale was high. Yesterday was his birthday and some patriotic officers there organized a party for him and brought birthday cake," Dhargham al-Zeidi said.The case became a focus for Iraqis and others in the Muslim world who resent the U.S. invasion and occupation. But it also embarrassed al-Maliki, who was standing next to Bush at the time. Neither leader was injured.

Al-Zeidi had been due to face a trial in December on a charge of assaulting a foreign leader, which his defense team said carried a maximum sentence of 15 years. But an appellate court is considering a motion to reduce the charges to simply insulting Bush.

Defense lawyer Dhia al-Saadi said it was a matter of freedom of expression.

"Al-Zeidi's act was symbolic and in no way was it a murder attempt," he said, adding that he had been allowed to meet his client only once.

Can you imagine trying to murder someone by throwing your shoes at him? I mean, maybe Chuck Norris could do it, but all an ordinary dude like Muntadhar al-Zeidi can hope for is to throw a strike and hit his target, or at least make him duck.

Skipping down a little bit ...
But his brother said information about the international wave of support had been kept from the journalist.

"Some officers told him that half of the Iraqis were against him. But he was very happy when he heard that all the Iraqis support him. He even cried when he heard that there were demonstrations on his behalf even in the United States," Dhargham al-Zeidi said.

It is the perfect symbolic gesture, throwing your shoes at someone like you'd shoo away a noisy old pussycat. George Bush has lived in a bubble so long, he seems unaware of the world's opinion of him. At the end of his eight years as President, he crows about liberating millions of Iraqis, when the Iraqis wish he'd left them alone. A good, well-aimed shoe is the perfect way to end his term.


Blogger Priya Lynn said...

You can throw a shoe at Bush yourself here:

Its proper etiquette to yell "This is a farewell kiss you dog!" when you do it.

January 18, 2009 1:16 PM  
Anonymous Derrick said...

You can also join a facebook fan club for the guy who threw his shoes at the troll. Just search for ¨threw shoes at Bush¨.

January 18, 2009 2:29 PM  

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