Bush Shoe Thrower Monument In Iraq Quickly Taken Down
A shoe monument was put up yesterday in Tikrit, Iraq, to honor the journalist who threw his own shoes at former President Bush last month.
Reuters reported earlier today:
The two-meter (six-foot) high statue, unveiled on Thursday in former dictator Saddam Hussein's home town of Tikrit, depicts a bronze-colored shoe, filled with a plastic shrub. "Muntazer: fasting until the sword breaks its fast with blood; silent until our mouths speak the truth," reads an inscription, in honor of journalist Muntazer al-Zaidi, who hurled his shoes at Bush and called him a "dog" at a news conference during the former president's final visit to Iraq.
Zaidi has been held in jail in Baghdad since the incident, facing charges of assaulting a visiting head of state.
However, shortly after it was unveiled, the central government requested its removal. CNN explains:
After the request was made, Iraqi police visited the location to make sure that the shoe monument was removed.
"We will not allow anyone to use the government facilities and buildings for political motives," said Abdullah Jabara, Salaheddin deputy governor.
The Earth Times discusses the significance of the structure's removal:
Al-Zaidi, who is in custody awaiting trial, is regarded by many Iraqis as a hero and demonstrators last month took to the streets across the Arab world calling for his release.
Although some people said that the shoe was removed because of the charges pending against al-Zaidi, others question the importance of erecting such a monument inside a children's facility.