Lee Harvey Florsheim: Unwitting Example of U.S. Success in Iraq

Doug Powers
The infamous “Shoe-na-bomber,” Muntadar al-Zaidi, who threw two shoes at President Bush during a press conference in Iraq, is being lauded as a brave hero in many parts of the Middle East and in America’s “Berkeley Corridor,” and you know what? He is a hero, because al-Zaidi did more in one, brief fit of shoe rage to demonstrate that Iraq is becoming a freer nation which recognizes human rights -- even for people with incredibly bad judgment -- than all the State of the Union speeches and U.S. media tours ever could.

The evidence that Iraq is a much different place isn’t found in anything al-Zaidi did, however, but in the restraint in dealing with him.

The brother of Shoeless Muntadar is saying his brother was beaten in custody. What’s the world coming to? You can’t assault a world leader without the police smacking you around a little? The horror. The point is this: What would have happened to al-Zaidi if he’d have done the same thing to a guest of Saddam Hussein? Don’t answer that -- I just finished eating.

You can always tell when a country is on the road to justice and the freedom coast is clearing, because “brave” protesters suddenly jump from the woodwork and “courage” becomes common — in a Dixie Chicks sort of way.

What’s not being satisfactorily explained to those of us who care to parse this sort of silliness is that if people are praising the attack on Bush because Bush is “Hitler” incarnate, then why is al-Zaidi still alive? I for one prefer a little more evil in the people I call evil. Bush has to work a lot harder than this if he’s going to earn the title of “Hitler” from me!

As Zaidi lofted his loafers airborne, he reportedly shouted: “This is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog” (“sic semper Adidas”).

And al-Zaidi also gets a goodbye kiss — from President Bush and our troops, many of whom have made the ultimate sacrifice so people like this “reporter” can live in a freer nation — Not that al-Zaidi will publicly admit it. But, if he does a little personal “sole” searching, al-Zaidi will understand that, all other actions being equal, he’s only alive today because of President Bush and the troops he commands. Barefoot, but alive.

This situation and others like it have turned me into a believer that bringing a free society to fruition and maintaining it is a little like raising your kids properly: If they don’t hate you once in a while, you’re doing something wrong.
The infamous “Shoe-na-bomber,” Muntadar al-Zaidi, who threw two shoes at President Bush during a press conference in Iraq, is being lauded as a brave hero in many parts of the Middle East and in America’s “Berkeley Corridor,” and you know what? He is a hero, because al-Zaidi did more in one, brief fit of shoe rage to demonstrate that Iraq is becoming a freer nation which recognizes human rights -- even for people with incredibly bad judgment -- than all the State of the Union speeches and U.S. media tours ever could.

The evidence that Iraq is a much different place isn’t found in anything al-Zaidi did, however, but in the restraint in dealing with him.

The brother of Shoeless Muntadar is saying his brother was beaten in custody. What’s the world coming to? You can’t assault a world leader without the police smacking you around a little? The horror. The point is this: What would have happened to al-Zaidi if he’d have done the same thing to a guest of Saddam Hussein? Don’t answer that -- I just finished eating.

You can always tell when a country is on the road to justice and the freedom coast is clearing, because “brave” protesters suddenly jump from the woodwork and “courage” becomes common — in a Dixie Chicks sort of way.

What’s not being satisfactorily explained to those of us who care to parse this sort of silliness is that if people are praising the attack on Bush because Bush is “Hitler” incarnate, then why is al-Zaidi still alive? I for one prefer a little more evil in the people I call evil. Bush has to work a lot harder than this if he’s going to earn the title of “Hitler” from me!

As Zaidi lofted his loafers airborne, he reportedly shouted: “This is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog” (“sic semper Adidas”).

And al-Zaidi also gets a goodbye kiss — from President Bush and our troops, many of whom have made the ultimate sacrifice so people like this “reporter” can live in a freer nation — Not that al-Zaidi will publicly admit it. But, if he does a little personal “sole” searching, al-Zaidi will understand that, all other actions being equal, he’s only alive today because of President Bush and the troops he commands. Barefoot, but alive.

This situation and others like it have turned me into a believer that bringing a free society to fruition and maintaining it is a little like raising your kids properly: If they don’t hate you once in a while, you’re doing something wrong.