By Kamran Ahmed Bari
The day when a pair of shoes was dispatched at him by an Iraqi Journalist, named Zaidi, might have been the worst of George Walker Bush’s entire life. “This is a gift from the Iraqis, this is the farewell kiss, you dog!” he screamed hurling the first shoes. “This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq”, he said and sent off the second shoes.
The incident has not only boosted the morale of Muslims and Iraqis, but also of all civilized nations that value humanity. The episode was so significant that a Saudi businessman reportedly offered $ 10 million for just one of the shoes.
Nastiest of all the American presidents, Bush deserved the farewell kiss as an answer-not-a question, to the bloodthirsty wars he inflicted around the world that killed tens of thousands and orphaned millions. This was a blow on the face of American imperialism where the commander in chief of the most powerful, but irresponsible, state of the world, was gifted with shoes and abuse on his farewell visit.
The US cruise missiles lost their significance partly because subjugated nations got used to them and partly due to the existing power distance between nation states or what, now late, Mr. Samuel P.Huntington termed as “civilizations”, where some nations are more desperate than others. Whatever the reason, Mr. Zaidi’s shoes proved to be more effective in sending strong message throughout the world than the American cruise missiles.
The Iraqi shoes will be remembered in history in that they were an answer noteworthy enough to the policy paradigms of Sameul P.Huntington in his book “The Clash of Civilizations and The Remaking of World Order”, which prepared the ground for Team Bush’s foreign policies. The farewell shoes signaled strong enough to prove that there are clashes of ignorance not clash of civilizations.
Chapter 5 of the book “TEAM BUSH Leadership Lessons from the Bush White House”, by Donald F.Kettl, is titled “The importance of message”, that elaborates on how much importance Bush gives to messages. I hope the author of the book will ask Mr. Bush on how he has interpreted the message received from the Iraqi shoes. The incident of the farewell shoes is another chapter of leadership lessons that the author shall include in the said book.
The president – elect and the prospective presidents of USA shall employ shoe catchers to escort them when they visit states under their containment, and more exclusively when they talk in press conferences. The shoes of mass destruction will be more fatal than the US’s fantasy notion of weapons of mass destruction in the hands of other nations or states.
Those shoes shall be decorated in a showcase at the white house as historical souvenirs and they would dole out the purpose of great lesson for potential American presidents to avoid moral, economic, and political imperialism and usurpation of the resources and rights of other countries and nations. A model of the shoes shall also be placed next to the statue of liberty that would keep striking a chord to the American leaders that to remain in peace you need to let others live in peace, if not, then you will be receiving flying shoes into your face, just as Bush did.