Angry Iraqi throws shoes at President Bush in Baghdad

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Angry Iraqi throws shoes at President Bush in Baghdad

Angry Iraqi throws shoes at President Bush in Baghdad
12/12/2008

Paranormalis Videos: Bush Dodges Shoes Thrown by Iraqi Journalist

President Bush made a farewell visit Sunday to Baghdad, Iraq, where he met with Iraqi leaders and was targeted by an angry Iraqi man, who jumped up and threw shoes at Bush during a news conference.

Bush ducked, and the shoes, thrown one at a time, sailed past his head during the news conference with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki in his palace in the heavily fortified Green Zone.

Throwing shoes at someone, or sitting so that the bottom of a shoe faces another person, is considered an insult among Muslims.

The man was dragged out screaming after throwing the shoes.
As the man continued to scream from another room, Bush said: "That was a size 10 shoe he threw at me, you may want to know."

Bush had been lauding the conclusion of a security pact with Iraq as journalists looked on.

"So what if the guy threw his shoe at me?" Bush told a reporter in response to a question about the incident.

"Let me talk about the guy throwing his shoe. It's one way to gain attention. It's like going to a political rally and having people yell at you. It's like driving down the street and having people not gesturing with all five fingers.

"It's a way for people to draw attention. I don't know what the guy's cause is. But one thing is for certain. He caused you to ask me a question about it. I didn't feel the least bit threatened by it.

"These journalists here were very apologetic. They ... said this doesn't represent the Iraqi people, but that's what happens in free societies where people try to draw attention to themselves."

Bush then directed his comments to the security pact, which he and al-Maliki were preparing to sign, hailing it as "a major achievement" but cautioning that "there is more work to be done."

"All this basically says is we made good progress, and we will continue to work together to achieve peace," Bush said.

Bush's trip was to celebrate the conclusion of the security pact, called the Strategic Framework Agreement and the Status of Forces Agreement, the White House said.

The pact will replace a U.N. mandate for the U.S. presence in Iraq that expires at the end of this year. The agreement, reached after months of negotiations, sets June 30, 2009, as the deadline for U.S. combat troops to withdraw from all Iraqi cities and towns. The date for all U.S. troops to leave Iraq is December 31, 2011.

Bush called the passage of the pact "a way forward to help the Iraqi people realize the blessings of a free society."

Bush said the work "hasn't been easy, but it has been necessary for American security, Iraqi hope and world peace."

Bush landed at Baghdad International Airport on Sunday and traveled by helicopter to meet with President Jalal Talabani and his two vice presidents at Talabani's palace outside the Green Zone.

It marked the first time he has been outside the heavily fortified Green Zone in Baghdad without being on a military base.

The visit was Bush's fourth since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003.
Afterward, Talabani praised his U.S. counterpart as a "great friend for the Iraqi people" and the man "who helped us to liberate our country and to reach this day, which we have democracy, human rights, and prosperity gradually in our country."

Talabani said he and Bush, who is slated to leave office next month, had spoken "very frankly and friendly" and expressed the hope that the two would remain friends even "back in Texas."

For his part, Bush said he had come to admire Talabani and his vice presidents "for their courage and for their determination to succeed."

As the U.S. and Iraqi national anthems played and Iraqi troops looked on, he and the Iraqi president walked along a red carpet.

In remarks to reporters, National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley, who traveled with Bush, described the situation in Iraq as "in a transition."

"For the first time in Iraq's history and really the first time in the region, you have Sunni, Shia and Kurds working together in a democratic framework to chart a way forward for their country," he said.
Article from CNN
 

Stephen A

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Re: Angry Iraqi throws shoes at President Bush in Baghdad

President Bush made an unannounced visit to Iraq last December 14, and while he is having his Press conference with the Prime Minister of Iraq, an Iraqi journalist who felt almost disgusted at the U.S. President?s treatment of his country had decisively taken off his shoes and hurled them at President Bush. That was a sign of disrespect and insult. In Muslim culture, hit footwear fling is an insult of the highest magnitude. Good Muslims remove their shoes before taking sanctuary in a mosque. Besieged Iraqi citizens threw their shoes at the toppling statue of Saddam Hussein during liberation, so that should better explain the depth of this insult. The ?Bush Shoe-Thrower?, identified as Muntadhar al-Zeidi, is viewed as a hero across the Middle East. A Libyan charity group called Wa Attassimou proclaims that the Iraqi authorities should release al-Zeidi and he should be honored for his deed. Bush, on the other hand, laughed it off and referred to it as a ?sign of a free society,? similar to what payday loans are. The mad journalist is still in custody and the infamous footwear is being held for evidence. Click to read more on <a title="Learn more about how to make money throwing shoes" rev="vote-for" href="Need Extra Cash? Throw Shoes at Bush">Payday Loans</a>.
 


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