Inside the Middle East
January 30, 2009
Posted: 1527 GMT

Well, that didn't last long.

According to CNN producer Mohammed Tawfeeq, an official with Salahedeen city Council told CNN the shoe sculpture was removed from the courtyard of the Tikrit orphanage.

The official said the removal of the giant shoe followed a request from the central government.

Iraqi police have reportedly visited the site to make sure the shoe, a bronze replica of the footwear hurled at forrmer President george W. Bush last month by an angry journalist, was indeed gone.

Where is the shoe now?

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Filed under: Iraq

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GLeigh   January 30th, 2009 5:43 pm ET

I have a question – not unusual. Where is the person who threw the shoe? Is he okay? Personally, I don't think former President Bush was too traumatized by the incident though it was disrespectful. After all the frustrations of his eight years of service during very challenging times, I think he would have enjoyed chunking a shoe back – truth be told. The global economy seems to be in the toilet. Perhaps we all need to take a deep breath and throw a shoe.

Nona   January 30th, 2009 6:13 pm ET

The government removed the shoe? That's just wrong!

If the owners of the orphanage or the owners of the shoe decided to move it, that's fine. That's whose decision it should be. But if the government doesn't own the show or the place where it's displayed, then it shouldn't have a say in any of it.

We need more expressions like the shoe statue. It's a great symbol of nonviolent challenge to authority. Such symbols are much more powerful than a gun or a tank in inspiring genuine change and legitimizing a cause.

Libra   January 30th, 2009 8:25 pm ET

The Iraqi journalist who threw the shoe is surely going to jail after the court decides after the trial. He might get 15 years. As for the shoe, it will be hanged. So much for the inherited freedoms that Bush aspired to attach in Iraq. Freedom surely must be hanged also.

Linda   January 31st, 2009 12:57 am ET

Why did the government have to remove the shoe? This shows that their freedom is limited.

GLeigh   January 31st, 2009 4:00 am ET

Libra – I'm basically for mercy for this guy. He messed up. He threw something at a world leader. You're turning it into a political statement. Nice job. I would like him to receive mercy. Your goal??

GLeigh   January 31st, 2009 4:10 am ET

Libra – I'm pretty much siding, begging really, for the guy to get off. This is not a political statement. He messed up. Big time. I liked the statue too. It's just art. Whatever art means to anyone. Abstract looks a little funky but some get it. I like shoes.

Sam   January 31st, 2009 8:38 am ET

Welcome to Democracy the American way according to Bush... You are either way with us or against us.

Saudi   January 31st, 2009 9:16 am ET

Freedom of expression and new democratic reality turned to be the presetting American lies and deceptions of the exploited naive Iraqis.

dennis   January 31st, 2009 1:17 pm ET

If Iraqi goverment want a democratic nation, they should not remove the shoe monument. Let there be Freedom of Expression.

SanAntoTx   January 31st, 2009 7:14 pm ET

I agree with dennis. Whats the point of bringing democracy to them if they arent going to live up to freedom of expression. they've had statues of tyrents, guns, and swords, whats wrong with a shoe? I wonder if they'er going to sell the shoe off? If so i wonder how much they'll want for it. they should put it on e-bay. I bet it'll rake in a small fortune, and the proceeds could go to the orphange.

Libra   January 31st, 2009 8:56 pm ET


The Iraqi journalist was wrong to throw the shoe and he wasn't insane. He knew what he was doing. He meant it. The shoe is a sign of insult, disrespect. People step on all kinds of things with their shoes on. Imagine what anger the journalist had when he threw it at Bush. It takes alot of anger to throw that at such a high profile political figure of the world. Bush might have delighted some Iraqis when he invaded Iraq, but one must never forget how many peoples' lives he destroyed. Bush is still considered an invader to some Iraqis, freedom or not. It might be hard to imagine that Iraq was the most modern country in the Middle East. That has been destroyed. Let's not forget that Saddam's government was in constant battles with the shi'ite in Iraq, the same people who make Hezbollah in Lebanon, who came from Iran and who are helping Hammas. So now, US has to deal with same battles Saddam did when he was President of Iraq. Which means, Saddam was not allowed to take care of his governments health, but it's ok for Israel to knock the brains off of Hezbollah. How Ironic is that? The USA and Israel got the whole Middle East messed up and they play these fake "freedom" games with them and they are the cause for the Middle East problems. They should just mind their own business. There will never be USA's kind of freedom in the Middle East, they have their own. The shoe removal is the proof.

Franky   February 1st, 2009 2:42 am ET

You know, I think is a good sign in terms of their government and managing, I think is good in terms of the future. But I do find I crazy that a couple of shorties did it, talk about dedication and passion...

(Ohh snap, they're bustin out Happiness with the Pointer Sister's already, man, looks like this party has begun guys...)

And not to mention the election, some pretty good signs so far...

Su Zan   February 1st, 2009 1:51 pm ET

Many in Iraq are unable to feed themselves, why spend $5000 on a display instead of spending it on the children in the orphanage to improve their situation

Maria   February 1st, 2009 4:33 pm ET

It doens't matter much if the shoe is there or not. after this incident whenever I see any shoe it automatically reminds me of George W. Bush!!!

Prashanth Krishnamurthy   February 3rd, 2009 4:40 am ET

The shoe throwing incident on Bush was as a result of frustration from the Iraqi journalist.So a shoe monument wasn't necessary.It created a kind of mentality the Iraqi's would display with the shoe monument still in place.Hence the removal.

Johan   February 3rd, 2009 3:32 pm ET

Throwing a shoe at Bush may seem fair considering his policys, yet people who criticize George W Bush mostly talk about peace so it might have been better to talk instead of throw anything at him. Violence never deserves a monument, neither does George Bush by the way!

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