Sunday, December 14, 2008

Bush attacked with shoes in Iraq

George W Bush made a surprise visit to Iraq on Sunday, but not all went well after someone threw a pair of shoes at him. President Bush shrugged off the incident saying, “so what if a guy threw a shoe at me, it is one way to get attention. It’s like going to a political rally and having someone yell at you. It’s like driving down the street and have people not gesturing with all five fingers”. He dismissed the ‘attack’ as a way of getting attention but said he did not know what the man’s cause was. He added that he “didn’t feel the least bit threatened by it” and went on to say that other journalists in the room had apologized for the reporter’s actions.

During the press conference a journalist had stood up shouting in Arabic, "this is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog" before throwing a pair of size 10 shoes towards the President. Both shoes missed the President one only missed him by inches and security seemed slow to restrain the man who was eventually pulled to the ground [BBC / CNN / Sky News / al Jazeera].

The shoe throwing incident detracted from the main reason President Bush visited the country. He and Iraqi PM Nouri Maliki had arranged the meeting to sign a new security agreement between the two countries. However footage of the American leader ducking the flying footwear dominated headlines. The throwing of shoes is an Arab insult and after the fall of Saddam Hussein many Iraqis were seen to throw shoes at Saddam’s portraits and statues. Only recently protesters in Baghdad were seen to throw shoes at an effigy of George Bush.

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