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Shoe-Tossing Iraqi To Get Early Release

From a celebratory Associated Press:

Iraqi who threw shoes at Bush to be released early

By Kim Gamel, Associated Press Writer

BAGHDAD – An Iraqi journalist imprisoned for hurling his shoes at former President George W. Bush will be released next month after his sentence was reduced for good behavior, his lawyer said Saturday…

The journalist has been in custody since the Dec. 14 outburst, which occurred as Bush was holding a news conference with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Al-Maliki, who was standing next to Bush at the time, was said to have been deeply offended by the act.

Al-Zeidi was initially sentenced to three years in prison after pleading not guilty to assaulting a foreign leader. The court reduced it to one year because the journalist had no prior criminal history.

Defense attorney Karim al-Shujairi said al-Zeidi will now be released on Sept. 14, three months early.

"We have been informed officially about the court decision," al-Shujairi told The Associated Press in a telephone interview. "His release will be a victory for the free and honorable Iraqi media."

Followers of anti-U.S. cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who were among the leaders of many of the demonstrations demanding al-Zeidi’s release, welcomed the decision to free him early.

"We believe that al-Zeidi did not commit any crime but only expressed the will of the Iraqi people in rejecting the U.S. occupation," Sadrist lawmaker Falah Shanshal said. "Al-Zeidi’s image will always be a heroic one." …

The case’s investigating judge has said the journalist was struck about the face and eyes, apparently by security agents who wrestled him to the ground and dragged him away.

Al-Zeidi’s family has said he was also mistreated while in custody, although the government has denied the allegation.

"We thank God that he will be released, although we still fear for his safety since he is still in the prison," his brother Dargham said. "He will be released full of pride and strength from all the love he has received from the Iraqi people and international organizations and figures who advocate freedom."

Gosh, we didn’t see this coming either.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Saturday, August 29th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Shoe-Tossing Iraqi To Get Early Release”

  1. Melly

    Oh heck, why imprison anyone who threathens the national security of this country or President Bush?

    I really feel for VP Dick Cheney. The terrorists attacks that were thrawted by the Bush Administration may never be revealed to the nation.

    I wonder if VP Cheney is bound to any confidentiality rules pertaining to the details of homeland security during Bush’s administration?

  2. artboyusa

    Can’t honestly say that there weren’t times when I wanted to throw my shoes (or something else) at Bush too. The attempted Great Immigration Con of 2006 was one of them. Trying to put that Meiers woman on the Supreme Court was another. Pretending for three years that everything was going swell in Iraq when it plainly wasn’t was just one more…

  3. Reality Bytes

    For some reason I can’t the Dr. Hook hit, “On the Cover of The Rolling Stone” out of my head.


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