Iraqi Shoe Thrower a Lucky Man

Last week, Muntadar al-Zeidi was freed from the Iraqi prison in which he had been held for nine months.  Al-Zeidi is the Iraqi journalist who last December threw both his shoes at then-President George W. Bush, who at the time was standing behind a podium answering questions from the Baghdad media.  Fortunately for President Bush, al-Zeidi’s journalistic skill apparently are superior to his throwing skills, since both shoes missed the former president, who, by the way, exhibited impressive speed and dexterity in deftly bobbing and weaving to avoid the leather-soled projectiles. 

Although al-Zeidi complained that he was tortured by Iraqi authorities during his incarceration, he was actually fortunate he was prosecuted and sentenced under Iraqi law instead of US jurisprudence.  Had he been subject to prosecution in our system, his sentence would have been far longer than the three-year sentence he received initially, and which was subsequently reduced.  Under US law, he would have been charged not with a single offense, but multiple offenses (assault on a federal official, assault with a deadly weapon, terrorist acts, reckless endangerment, etc.).  Such a prosecution would likely have resulted in a sentence far in excess of three years, which would not likely have been reduced (there is no longer parole under federal sentencing). 

We also know that under the George W. Bush policy (continued at least thus far by the administration of President Barack Obama) if the president decides on his own that a person is an “enemy combatant” (and there is nothing under federal law that exlicitly excludes shoes from being considered a combatant’s weapon), the person so designated can be detained indefinitely without access to any legal remedy.  Finally, we won’t even get into the question of wether water-boarding or other “enhanced interrogation techniques” would have been practiced on al-Zeidi in order to determine what other heinous plots other than shoe-heaving he, or others in his conspiracy, might have been planning.

Yes, Mr. Muntadar al-Zeidi is actually one lucky dude.  He should quit whining.  It could’ve been much worse.

14 comments Add your comment


September 25th, 2009
7:02 am

Assault with a deadly weapon? lol
That guy has extra deadly shoes people

Turd Ferguson

September 25th, 2009
8:20 am

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On Tuesday, the Senate health committee voted 12-11 in favor of a two-page amendment courtesy of Republican Tom Coburn that would require all Members and their staffs to enroll in any new government-run health plan. It took me less than a minute to sign up to require our congressmen and senators to drink at the same trough! Three cheers for Congressman John Fleming of Louisiana!

Congressman John Fleming ( Louisiana physician) has proposed an amendment that would require congressmen and senators to take the same healthcare plan they force on us (under proposed legislation they are curiously exempt).

Congressman Fleming is encouraging people to go on his Website and sign his petition (very simple – just first, last and email). I have immediately done just that at:


Please urge as many people as you can to do the same!

If Congress forces this on the American people, the Congressmen should have to accept the same level of health care for themselves and their families.


September 25th, 2009
9:03 am

Thanks Bob, for pointing out that the Patriot Act and related legislation have put America squarely in alignment with the most draconian police states on the planet. But hey, Bush did this to protect our “freedom,” right? Oh yeah, and to stop those evil folks who “hate our freedoms.”


September 25th, 2009
9:17 am

Actually, he should be thankful that the USSS was a little slow that day. On a normal day they would have shot him dead on the spot. The shoes could have been shoe bombs!


September 25th, 2009
10:40 am

The shoes are called “deadly weapons” because they could have contained grenades for all they knew at the time.

Larry Jones

September 25th, 2009
10:58 am

He is a hero, I’m sorry he missed!

Chris Broe

September 25th, 2009
12:02 pm

Didn’t Austin Power have a nemesis that threw shoes? Maxwell Smart had a shoe phone. A chick threw a cell phone at me once…….once!

Hillbilly Deluxe

September 25th, 2009
1:34 pm

Speaking from experience, being hit in the head with any heavier than air projectile ain’t no fun. Not much to laugh about if you’re on the receiving end of it.

joe matarotz

September 25th, 2009
2:52 pm

It could have been much worse for al-Zeidi. He could have been sentenced to reading Bobolink Barr’s column. A fate truly worse than death.


September 25th, 2009
8:38 pm

This guy is lucky it wasn’t Obama, because Cynthia Tucker would have gone over there and beat up on him for the “hate” crime. Because Bush wasn’t white however, it isn’t a “hate” crime. The guy should have been shot. Joe Wilson yells “you lie” (which is being truthful) and liberals wail about respect for the office of the President. But I guess throwing shoes at a President isn’t disrespectful???

gloom and doomer

September 25th, 2009
9:09 pm

Joan said at 8:38 PM -
“Because Bush wasn’t white however, it isn’t a “hate” crime. The guy should have been shot. Joe Wilson yells “you lie” (which is being truthful) and liberals wail about respect for the office of the President. But I guess throwing shoes at a President isn’t disrespectful???”

Bush wasn’t white? Fo’ shizzle.

Waiting for the first moron in CONgress to toss a shoe at O. Until then, guess it’ll stay at the kindergarten level of name calling. How appropriate for that whole damn crowd of idiots.


September 25th, 2009
11:30 pm

The Iraqi people should erect a monument to his courage and conviction.

And they may, if they can every be rid of the imperial occupation army that continues to stand on their necks and destroy their country.

War crimes trials for all!

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

September 26th, 2009
6:58 am

Well, I hope they waterboarded him good. Throwing shoes at My President. It’s OK to call this Obama a liar on TV and throw anything you want at him. But this guy crossed the line. We need to turn the Teabaggers loose on him. Have a good weekend everybody.

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