US Agent Almost Accidentally Shot Ahmadinejad

Book reveals incident that changed US-Iranian relations a little
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 21, 2013 11:07 AM CDT
US Agent Almost Accidentally Shot Ahmadinejad
Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad makes a victory sign after attending the funeral ceremony for Hugo Chavez at the military academy in Caracas, Venezuela, March 8, 2013.   (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

It was the shot that was almost heard around the world. In September 2006, a US Secret Service Agent fired off a shotgun blast just as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was loading his motorcade at the InterContinental Hotel during a UN General Assembly meeting in New York—apparently by mistake. The incident is revealed in a short book excerpt from Marc Ambinder and DB Grady's Deep State: Inside the Government Secrecy Industry, published at the Atlantic today.

The agent was adjusting a side-mounted shotgun on the motorcade, when he accidentally discharged it. "Everyone just stopped," one official recalls. "The Iranians looked at us and we looked at the Iranians. The agent began to apologize. Ahmadinejad just turned his head and got into his car." The US kept expecting Ahmadinejad to bring up the incident at the UN, perhaps claiming the US had tried to assassinate him. When he didn't, the authors write that Bush's aides began to "see Ahmadinejad in a new light." (More Mahmoud Ahmadinejad stories.)

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