President Bush is a very unpopular president in America. Most Americans disapprove of the Iraq war. It seems that sentiment is running strong in Iraq, too. Muntather Zaidi, an Iraqi journalist working for al-Baghdadiya, in Cairo, threw his two shoes at President Bush’s head. This is a very strong insult and sign of disrespect in the Iraqi culture. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki was standing next to President Bush at the time of the shoe incident. He attempted to grab the second shoe as it whizzed by, almost hitting President Bush. (Click on the first source listed below to see the video of the shoe incident.)
The reporter threw the shoes full force at Bush’s head. The anger this Iraqi was feeling was evident in the power with which the shoes flew directly at Bush’s face. Binside TV translates the comments made while the reporter was throwing the shoes as: “This is a gift from the Iraqis. This is the farewell kiss, you dog. This is from the widows, the orphans, and those who were killed in Iraq.”
The International Herald Tribune reports Muntather Zaidi is now under arrest; the Iraqi government has charged him with a barbaric act according to Yasin Majeed, the prime minister’s media adviser. Zaidi’s employer, al-Baghdadiya TV has requested his release.
President Bush’s response to the attacks was that “It showed free speech in a democracy. He added that Iraq will now be a “force for freedom and a source of stability in a volatile region.” President Bush has spent billions of American dollars on a war that has not quelled the chaos in Iraq. The Iraqis seem resentful of the war, not grateful to America.
Sentiment against Bush and Americans is running high in Iraq and the Middle East as a whole. The Arab News is running on page one the headline: “Bush “Shoed” During Iraq Visit. Bush has inflamed anti-American sentiment in the Arab world to an unprecedented degree. The Iraq war has served as a maker of martyrs and as fodder for young men to join terrorist training groups.
I believe it is crucial for President Elect Obama to remove troops from Iraq as soon as possible. This war should never have occurred. Every minute we are still there hatred to America grows. America’s reputation has been terribly sullied by this war. We are a nation who is now disrespected for an unjust war. Also American’s veterans who served in the Iraq war are not receiving adequate and timely medical and psychological treatment.