Arab World Head-Over-Heels About Return of 'Hero' Shoe-Tosser
Zaidi hailed as Goliath-battling David
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Sep 9, 2009 3:12 AM CDT

(Newser) – The Iraqi journalist who hurled both his shoes at George Bush during a speech in Baghdad last year will be released early from prison next week to a hero's welcome, a free house and offers of money, a wife, and a gold-saddled horse, reports the Guardian. Muntadar al-Zaidi "is a David and Goliath figure," whose "shoes were his slingshot," said one Iraqi fan. "When the history books are written, they will look back on this episode with great acclaim."

Zaidi was certain he would be shot by the US Secret Service when he hurled his shoes, but "he was not afraid to die," according to his brother. "This is your farewell kiss, you dog," Zaidi said as he managed to fire both shoes at Bush, who ducked out of harm's way. "This is for the widows and orphans of Iraq." Zaidi plans to quit journalism for good and hopes to open an orphanage for Iraqi children, said his brother.