Between being a journalist and being human, he chose the latter

Man who threw his shoes at bushIn his mind, Muntazer al-Zaidi was faced with the choice of being detached and dispassionate on the one hand, and being simply human on the other. He, of course, chose the latter. Nine months after he threw his shoes at George W. Bush, he still refuses to be called a hero. He even apologized to his colleagues. But knowing what he knew about the suffering of his people, feeling what he felt when he covered the devastation and deaths brought about by the American occupation, he had to do it. He was willing to give up his detachment, his dispassionate stance, his profession.

He did not have to explain himself.

He did so anyway. Even as he remains silent of the horrors he must have experienced in the hands of his captors, for nine months.

“If I have wronged journalism without intention, because of the professional embarrassment I caused the establishment, I apologise. All that I meant to do was express with a living conscience the feelings of a citizen who sees his homeland desecrated every day. The professionalism mourned by some under the auspices of the occupation should not have a voice louder than the voice of patriotism. And if patriotism needs to speak out, then professionalism should be allied with it,” al-Zaidi said.

Read the Guardian article for a condensed version of  the statement of Muntazer al-Zaidi — the man who threw his shoes at US Pres. George W. Bush.


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