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Muntadhar al-Zaidi
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    (circa 1980- )
    Born in Iraq
    Reporter for al-Baghdadia TV
    During a press conference in Baghdad, threw his shoes at US President George W. Bush, yelling 'This is the farewell kiss, you dog!' (December 14, 2008)
    Press secretary Dana Perino was struck in the eye by a mic stand during the ensuing scuffle.
    Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki called the shoe toss 'a shameful act' that 'damaged the reputation of Iraqi journalists.'
    News accounts of the incident emphasized that shoe throwing is a grave insult in the Arab world, as if it was some sort of compliment elsewhere.
    He received an award for bravery from a group headed by Muammar Qaddafi's daughter.
    He wishes Saddam Hussein were still in charge.
    He faces up to seven years in prison for chucking shoes at Bush; does he think he would have gotten off easier for hurling one at Saddam?
    The incident lends itself to endless bad puns. ('The shoe-thrower was booted from the press conference.' 'Bush's security detail were caught flat-footed.' Ad nauseum)
    Bush successfully ducked both shoe tosses.
    Afterwords, Bush said, 'I didn't feel the least bit threatened by it' and 'That's what people do in a free society, draw attention to themselves.'
    He was kidnapped on his way to work (November 16, 2007), beaten unconscious, then released three days later.
    He had been detained twice by US armed forces in Iraq.
    Thousands of Iraqis marched to show their support for him.

Credit: C. Fishel

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