Sunday, March 8, 2009

On December 14, 2008, the shoe-throwing incident took place, culminating in al-Zaidi's arrest.

On December 14, 2008, the shoe-throwing incident took place, culminating in al-Zaidi's arrest.
On December 15, 2008, hundreds of Iraqis marched in Baghdad to demand his release. Crowds gathered in Sadr City district of Baghdad and called for "hero" Muntadhar al-Zaidi to be freed from custody. There were similar scenes in Najaf. The demonstrators in Sadr City and Najaf alluded to the shoes. Participants in Sadr City "waved shoes attached to long poles," and those in Najaf threw their shoes at a passing United States military convoy. The "vast majority" of viewers of al-Baghdadia who telephoned to the station in order to express their opinions said that they approved al-Zaidi's actions.

On December 17, 2008, a group of Iraqi lawmakers demanded that the legislature take up the issue of the detained journalist. Aqeel Abdul Hussain, head of the Sadrist bloc, said that lawmakers had a duty to stand up for the detained journalist. "Some of the members support the government, but we have to admit that there was a mistake in the procedures under which he was arrested," said a spokesman for Parliament Speaker Mashhadani. "And we also must condemn the fact that he was beaten," he added. The session of Parliament ended without a consensus on what action to take regarding the reporter.
On December 18, 2008, a spokesman for Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said that al-Zaidi wrote a letter to Maliki expressing regret for his actions and asking for a pardon. Dhargham al-Zaidi claims that his brother was severely beaten after being taken into Iraqi custody. On December 17, Amnesty International called on Iraqi authorities to disclose the whereabouts of al-Zaidi and investigate all allegations of torture or other ill-treatment. Judge Dhia al-Kinani, the magistrate investigating the incident, said the court has opened a probe into al-Zaidi's alleged beating. Dhiaa al-Saadi, head of the Iraqi Bar Association, said that, according to court documents, the reporter's face and body were bruised. "The investigation process is now under way in mysterious circumstances," al-Zaidi's brother Uday said.
On December 19, 2008, thirty of al-Zaidi's family members staged a rally outside the heavily-fortified "Green Zone," which houses the Iraqi government and the prison where al-Zaidi is being held. In response to an apology letter that al-Zaidi was said to have written, al-Zaidi's brother Uday stated that the apology was "not a real one. If they [the government] want an apology, they must first release him so he can do it freely and not under pressure." Um Saad, al-Zaidi's sister, said that al-Zaidi "would never apologize for insulting the man who occupied our country.She also said that "nothing is known about... his condition, but he did nothing wrong. On the contrary, he pleased everyone. Bush is an occupier and he is the source of all the orphans and all the widows in Iraq." Bahaa al-Araji, a Sadrist MP, said journalist Muntathir al-Zaidi plans to press charges against the people who he says beat him. "We know that the judges themselves feel for him .. tomorrow we will submit a formal request that Zaidi should be allowed visits by his family," he also said. "We should call him Muntathar al Iraqi — not Muntathar al-Zaidi; all of Iraq is his tribe now," a leader in the Sons of Iraq movement said of al-Zaidi.[48]
On December 20, 2008, it was reported that the letter that al-Zaidi is said to have written to Nouri al-Maliki apologizes only to Maliki and not to George W. Bush. Al-Zaidi said he had no remorse for throwing his shoes at Bush and "added that he would repeat his actions if he sees him again, because Bush's forces have killed many of Iraq's children". In a written statement to the judge, al-Zaidi said that he expected to be killed by Bush's body guards after hurling his first shoe. "It seemed that his bodyguards were not on full alert at the time, that was how I managed to throw the second shoe," al-Zaidi explained. Also, hundreds of protesters gathered in a park opposite the Green Zone to protest the treatment of al-Zaidi. Heavily armed Iraqi soldiers surrounded the small park and Iraqi Army helicopters circled overhead as the demonstrators were demanded to leave. "I have told them I won’t move anywhere unless it is to my grave," said al-Zaidi's brother, Uday. Sunnis and Shiites held signs describing al-Zaidi as “the son of Iraq” and “the humiliator of the occupiers.” A few Iraqi soldiers ate food offered to them.
On December 21, 2008, al-Zaidi claimed he was physically coerced and that he would never apologize to President Bush no matter what the consequences. "Muntadhar said that he was forced to apologize to Al-Maliki and he will never, never apologize to Bush, even if they cut him into small pieces," al-Zaidi's brother Uday told the Los Angeles Times. Al-Zaidi's brother claimed his journalist brother had lost a tooth and his nose had required stitches because of the beatings he had suffered while in custody. "There were multiple bruises all over his body," he said. "There were cigarette burns behind his ears. He was beaten with metal rods. His eyes were swollen. They have assigned two medical doctors ... to provide him with treatment in order to hide the evidence of torture." Al-Zaidi's brother said his jailers periodically demanded he "confess" that he had been ordered to commit the act by enemies of the prime minister, but that a letter to the prime minister written by him from jail expressing regret for the attack was not said to have been ordered. Maliki reiterated that Zaidi's television station should renounce the act of al-Zaidi,[54] and also suggested, without providing any names, that "a person urged him to commit this act, and this person is known to us as a person who beheads people". U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice argued that Iraq is a democracy and that "history always shows these things differently than oday’s news." An Iranian deputy minister called for al-Zaidi's release.
On December 22, 2008, al-Zaidi's lawyer Dhiya'a al-Sa'adi also confirmed that al-Zaidi had been beaten and that al-Zaidi said he would never apologize to President Bush. Abdulsattar al-Berikdar, a spokesman of the Iraqi Supreme Judicial Council, said the court was not investigating allegations of torture because al-Zaidi didn't ask to be "submitted to a medical committee and did not tell the judge that he was tortured or register a complaint against anyone." Hajar Smouni, a spokesperson for Doha Center for Media Freedom in Qatar, argued that al-Zaidi should be given access to medical care and a fair trial. Smouni said it was positive he met a lawyer, but said it is worrying "that he is to be tried at the Central Criminal Court of Iraq, because that is a court used to try terrorism suspects".
On December 23, 2008, the Iraqi Parliament accepted the resignation of its speaker, Mahmoud al-Mashhadani. Part of the controversy for his resignation began with his refusing to allow discussion of the fate of Muntadhar al-Zaidi. The speaker described al-Zaidi as “the pride” of Iraq and said that his “best friends” were currently being detained by the United States military for ties to the insurgency. “I weep for the state of Iraq,” he told the Iraqi Parliament in his resignation.
On January 16, 2009, al-Zaidi's brother visited him for 2 hours and Iraqi prison guards threw him a birthday party.[59]
On January 19, 2009, the Swiss newspaper Tribune de Geneve reported that al-Zaidi was seeking political asylum in Switzerland, where his lawyer said he might work as a journalist at the United Nations.
On January 28, 2009, Muntadhar al-Zaidi cast his vote from prison.
On January 29, 2009, A monument of a shoe was erected in honor of Muntadhar al-Zaidi in a orphanage in Tikrit. The orphans helped to build the structure.
On January 30, 2009, the monument that was erected in honor of Muntadhar al-Zaidi was taken down after requests from the central government. 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," Abdullah Jabara, deputy governor of Salaheddin argued. Faten Abdulqader al-Naseri, the orphanage director, said "Those orphans who helped the sculptor in building this monument were the victims of Bush's war. The shoe monument is a gift to the next generation to remember the heroic action by the journalist."
On February 19, 2009 al-Zaidi told the Baghdad Central Criminal Court that he acted spontaneously after listening to Bush praise the "achievements" made in Iraq: "While he was talking I was looking at all his achievements in my mind. More than a million killed, the destruction and humiliation of mosques, violations against Iraqi women, attacking Iraqis every day and every hour. A whole people are saddened because of his policy, and he was talking with a smile on his face - and he was joking with the prime minister and saying he was going to have dinner with him after the press conference. Believe me, I didn't see anything around me except Bush. I was blind to anything else. I felt the blood of the innocent people bleeding from beneath his feet and he was smiling in that way. And then he was going to have a dinner, after he destroyed one million martyrs, after he destroyed the country. So I reacted to this feeling by throwing my shoes. I couldn't stop the reaction inside me .It was spontaneous."

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Attack by Links

Responsibilities center on collecting information about what is happening inside the Administration and around the world, and getting that information to the media in a timely and accurate fashion. The information includes things like a summary of the President's schedule for the day, whom the President has seen, called or had interactions with, and the official position of the Administration on the news of the day. This position pays around 170,000 dollars per year.[citation needed]

The Press Secretary traditionally also fields questions from the White House Press Corps in briefings and press conferences, which are generally televised, and "press gaggles", which are on-the-record briefings without video recording, though transcripts are usually made available.

The position of White House Press Secretary has often been filled by individuals from news media backgrounds:

Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed Stephen T. Early, a United Press International reporter and Associated Press correspondent
Harry S Truman appointed J. Leonard Reinsch, a radio man; Jonathan W. Daniels, a newspaper man who was in the Franklin Roosevelt Administration in multiple agencies and boards just prior to becoming White House Press Secretary; Charles Griffith Ross, a newspaper man who received the Pulitzer Prize in 1932; Early; Joseph Short, a newspaper man; and Roger Tubby, a reporter and editor turned Democratic National Committee spokesman before becoming White House Press Secretary
Dwight D. Eisenhower appointed James C. Hagerty, a New York Times reporter
John F. Kennedy appointed Pierre Salinger, a reporter and editor
Lyndon B. Johnson appointed George Christian, a reporter for International News Service
Gerald Ford appointed newspaper veteran Jerald terHorst and NBC News correspondent Ron Nessen to the post
Ronald Reagan appointed Larry Speakes, a newspaper man, and Marlin Fitzwater, a newspaper man
George H.W. Bush retained Fitzwater
George W. Bush appointed Fox News anchor Tony Snow, who also had extensive experience in the fields of print and radio journalism

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

ابن العظمى من أعظم العربية الأم

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