Friday, December 19, 2008

"I don't know what that guy's cause is"

Rosa Brooks on reactions to the shoe-throwing journalist around the world.

The whole episode sent nary a shiver through Bush's sunny little universe. Bush merely expressed his mystification about why Zaidi might have hurled those shoes. "I don't know what the guy's cause is," he told reporters brightly after Zaidi was beaten and dragged away by Iraqi guards.

Maybe no one had bothered to translate Zaidi's Arabic words for the president. As Zaidi threw the first shoe, he cried, "This is a gift from the Iraqis; this is the farewell kiss, you dog!" As he flung the second, he was even more explicit: "This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq!"

Brooks, while not condoning footwear-hurling among the press corps, puts it in perspective:

No, shoe throwing's not exactly a form of nonviolent resistance -- and Zaidi's not up there with Gandhi and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. But if Zaidi inspires a new global trend of shoe throwing, I'll take that over bomb throwing any day.

Via Democracy Arsenal.

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