Sunday, December 14, 2008

Iraqi Throws Shoes At Bush During Press Conference – "This is a goodbye kiss, you dog!"

An Iraqi television journalist hurled two shoes at President Bush on Sunday during a joint news conference Bush was holding with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki to mark the signing of a U.S.-Iraq security agreement.

Bush had just finished his prepared remarks in which he said the security agreement was made possible by the U.S. surge of troops earlier this year, whhen the journalist, Muthathar al Zaidi pulled his shoes off and hurled them at the president. "This is a goodbye kiss, you dog," Zaidi shouted.

Bush dodged the shoes and was not struck. Bodyguards quickly wrestled Zaidi to the floor and hauled him, kicking and screaming, from the room. Two other Iraqi journalists were briefly detained after one of them called Zaidi's actions "courageous."

CNN notes that this is considered an insult among Muslims.

The White House transcript from the news conference labels the incident an "audience interruption."

President Bush said. "Okay, everybody calm down for a minute."

Then, indicating Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, the president continued: "First of all, thank you for apologizing on behalf of the Iraqi people. It doesn't bother me. And if you want some — if you want the facts, it's a size 10 shoe that he threw. (Laughter.) Thank you for your concern, do not worry about it."

"I don't know what the guy said, but I saw his sole," he joked.

Not bad on that last pun, actually. I'll giggle at that while my house gets foreclosed.


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