So George Bush showed up in Baghdad on a p.r. tour to resurrect his image and pull his legacy out of the sewer pit that it now hovers over. But not all the journalists would go along with his dog and pony show. Now, I do not endorse this. As much as I dislike and disapprove of George Bush, I don’t condone throwing things at him, or at anyone. However, I can’t condemn the thrower in this case. If I were in his shoes (pardon the pun), I probably would want to do the same. I can’t know what was in Muntadhar al-Zeidi’s mind. Bush tried to paint him as a grand-stander. From the video, al-Zeidi seems sincerely angry, and he seems to have been “speaking” for the entire population of Iraq.
NPR reports there is widespread support for al-Zeidi among Iraqis:
Thousands of Iraqis took to the streets Monday to demand the release of a reporter who threw his shoes at President George W. Bush in anger at U.S. policies, as support for the act and the journalist flowed in from across the Arab world.
Newspapers across the Arab world printed front-page photos of Bush ducking the flying shoes, and satellite TV stations repeatedly aired the incident, which was hailed by the president’s many critics in the region.
It’s a long way from standing in his flight suit on the deck of an aircraft carrier beneath a “Mission Accomplished” banner, to dodging smelly shoes, but that is now the image of Bush we all will have. And it somehow seems fitting.