Iraqis rally for release of local journo who threw shoes at Bush
Hundreds of students at Diyala University in Baquba carried banners demanding the release of Muntadhar al-Zaidi, who was arrested for throwing his shoes at visiting George W. Bush and calling him “a dog” – two ultimate Arab insults. He was dragged screaming out of a news conference in Baghdad Sunday, Dec. 14. Bush bent just in time to dodge the missiles as he stood beside Maliki after they had signed the security document providing for US troops to quit Iraq by 2011.
Two smaller demonstrations of support took place in Falluja and Baghdad, mainly by students.
The incident exposed a gap in the security surrounding the president. Had the shoes been bombs or grenades, they could have hurt both leaders. Bush was an unannounced trip to Iraq Sunday, to bid its leaders farewell and thank US forces before heading out to Afghanistan.