Tiny Minority of Extremistsâ„¢ question: would al-Zaidi be a hero and have all these people going to bat for him if the Vast Majority of Muslimsâ„¢ really wanted peace, harmony with their non-Muslim neighbors in a secure democratic state, which is exactly what George W. Bush thought he was going to bring to Iraq? “Iraq: Cleric calls for release of Bush ‘shoe-thrower,'” from AKI, March 13 (thanks to C. Cantoni):
Baghdad, 13 March (AKI) – A prominent Shia Iraqi cleric has called for the release of Iraqi journalist Montazer al-Zaidi, a day after he was sentenced to three years in jail for throwing his shoes at former United States president George W. Bush.
Sheik Suhail al-Iqabi said the sentence against al-Zaidi was “a verdict against the Iraqi people who reject the American occupation.”
Al-Iqabi, who supports hardline Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, made the remarks during Friday prayers in Baghdad’s Sadr City.
On Thursday, Iraq’s Criminal High Court invoked article 223 of the Iraqi Constitution and sentenced al-Zaidi for the shoe-throwing incident that occurred last December.
The article provides for punishment of between three and 15 years in prison for assaulting a foreign leader on an official visit, al-Birqadar said.
However, al-Zaidi’s sentence will not final unless it is ratified by the Court of Cassation which has a month to uphold or amend the verdict.
On Thursday, the Iraqi Journalists’ Syndicate and the Journalistic Freedoms Observatory appealed to Iraqi president Jalal Talabani and prime minister Nouri al-Maliki to pardon al-Zaidi….