Iraqi journalist who threw shoe at Bush runs for parliament


Many people still remember the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at American President George W. bush at a press conference in 2008.

Muntadhar al-Zaidi, 40, is now running for parliament in Iraq after he became a national hero to his people.

In an interview with Al Arabiya, al-Zaidi explained the reason that drove him to aim at the US president and why  he is now contesting  parliamentary elections.

According to the journalist, he wanted to deliver a message to the people of the world and President Bush that the Iraqi people rejected the occupation and they were not traitors.

As for his candidacy in the list of “Sauron” which is supported by Muqtada al-Sadr, Zaidi sees that the list  represents the different sections of Iraqis, so he chose to join it.

What does the date of December 14 represents to you?

This history represents the cry of a people oppressed by unjust forces that came to impose their power over a country for its occupation and to impose its will on the administration of the State and the resources of the people.

If the current US president Donald Trump came to Baghdad, will he meet the fate of his predecessor George Bush from you?

The act against George W. Bush was meant to show that the Iraqi people didn’t welcome the troops with roses as said, which gave a stereotypical impression in the collective mind of the American media that the Iraqi people were traitors to their land and that they welcomed the occupier. I was thinking since 2003 to do something that is equal in strength in the media against the American occupation.

Does your candidacy in the list (led by Muqtada al-Sadr) represent a particular political party?

My candidacy for the elections came with the aim of being the voice of a people who were betrayed by the political forces during the last 15 years. I am foro a civilian government and I’m running independently as the religious parties proved their failure over the past years. I have chosen my electoral list to support these demands, and I see that it is close to my ideology and thoughts.

One of the unique things that I mention with pride is that after I asked for volunteers and donors for my campaign, I received dozens of  donations and volunteers for my campaign.

It started with the printing and publishing of posters and even electoral observation on the day of voting, all without fees or promises in return, and I can say that I am the only candidate who asks for votes without giving any promises.

If you have the opportunity to join a ministry within the next government, which ministry will you choose and why?

Currently, I have not thought of any ministerial position and I would like to be in parliament to play the legislative and supervisory role. But if there is an opportunity in the executive field, I will choose the Ministry of Human Rights as I respect people’s rights, freedom and ideas.

Source: Al Arabiya