The world of Bush-haters, across the world, had a hearty moment watching him duck a shoe thrown at him by an Iraqi journalist (really, was he one?) during a press conference. Today CNN's Candy Crowley, one of the few objective reporters out there, interviewed Bush and this episode came up. Bush told Crowley, ""First of all, it's got to be one of the most weird moments of my presidency," he said. "Here I am, getting ready to answer questions from a free press in a democratic Iraq, and a guy stands up and throws his shoe. And it was bizarre, and it was an interesting way for a person to express himself".
While everybody jeered at Bush for being so unpopular what was lost in the melee was that the event was historic from a much grander perspective than for that silly theatrics. This was a press conference where journalists in a middle-eastern country stood up and asked questions to not just the American President, the putative leader of the Free World, they also could question their own Prime Minister. No other country in that region can boast of that. Ahmedinejad holds press meet to rant against the Great Satan and of course Israel none can question him, much less throw a shoe and get out alive.
This so called thug in a journalist clothing needs the Saddam treatment that he so loves. Abhu Graib, while shameful on American standards, was picnic compared to Iraqi methods of torture which had acid baths, electrocution, nail pulling, execution of family members and of course no imagination is needed for what was done to women. This thug was escorted out and is being charged in a court. This being Iraq, in a rare show of brotherhood Sunnis AND Shias are rejoicing at this together putting away their own civil war of mutual kidnaps and torture of each other. Now the favorite method of torture amongst them is using mechanized drill bits for drilling at soft spots. If this kind of protest was shown to anybody else in the middle eastern world then the consequences would not be pleasant to the dissenter. For this the dissenters can kiss Bush "thanks".
For those who retort, "oh well Bush killed so many, what do you expect". I tell them "Saddam, Assad, Stalin, Mao all did much worse and with no shred of good intentions and this could not be done to any of them much less live to tell the tale afterward".