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What You Should Hate / September 16, 2009
By Mark Ames


It’s a bad time to be an American these days, but a funny little incident in Iraq proves that US troops haven’t lost their sense of humor. Here’s what happened: ever since that admittedly brave Iraqi threw his shoe at Bush (and spent the next few months with his testicles wired up to a Sears Die-Hard), everyone and their grandma thinks that “the shoe is mightier than the sword.”

Welp, someone should have translated that into Americanese, because just as the shoe-thrower was released from his Baghdad jail to a hero’s welcome, some idiot in Fallujah thought, “Hey, I can do that! I’ll throw a shoe and get famous too! What’s the worst that can happen?” So as a patrolling US Army vehicle passed by, he shouted curses at the Americans, then aimed his mighty shoe at the vehicle and threw it. The Americans seed his shoe, and raised him about 1000 bullets. Next thing you know, Ali looks like he’s been shoved into a food processor.


“Do you see what happens when you try to shoe a stranger in the ass, Larry? This is what happens!”

The really funny part is the understated explanation offered by a US spokesman:

The US military told AFP that a convoy in Fallujah had been attacked with a suspected grenade.

“Positive identification of the attacker was made, and US forces fired in self-defence wounding the attacker,” the army said in a statement.

To quote Flann O’Brien: “Name of figure of speech: litotes.”

Extra laugh track points for the other bit of info on the show-thrower: apparently, he was “mentally disturbed.” Indeed.

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Add your own

  • 1. wengler  |  September 16th, 2009 at 2:50 pm

    Political acts in Iraq are still likely best demonstrated with large explosives.

    But then again maybe he’s just another satisfied customer of the freedom train.

  • 2. josh wolf  |  September 16th, 2009 at 3:03 pm

    That stiff has two shoes on.

  • 3. Boutroslicious  |  September 16th, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    “In rhetoric, litotes is a figure of speech in which a certain statement is expressed by denying its opposite.” – wiki

    The attacker was not uninjured by the US forces’ fire.

  • 4. Ken Hagler  |  September 16th, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    That stiff also has magazine pouches on. If that’s really a photo of the dead guy from this story, it’s hardly surprising that someone would think he was a rebel throwing a grenade.

    Mind you, even if he _really had_ been throwing a grenade, it still wouldn’t be okay for the Stormtroopers to shoot him. If you don’t want stuff thrown at you, refrain from conquering other people’s contries.

  • 5. MK  |  September 16th, 2009 at 9:35 pm

    That pics like 4 years old from ogrish.

    At any rate,
    guess someone else threw his shoe since he aint been using them…

  • 6. Azr@el  |  September 16th, 2009 at 9:58 pm

    …and a camo strapped magazine belt, looks RPK sized.

  • 7. Allen  |  September 17th, 2009 at 1:12 am

    Throwing a shoe at a U.S. vehicle in Iraq is a guaranteed way to die. I believe Iraqis do occasionally lob old Russian anti-tank grenades (RKG-3s?), and they do in fact kill U.S. personnel. They’re awkward stick grenades too … that you would probably throw like you would throw a shoe.

    I dunno … if you’re going to get blown away like that, I think you might as well throw an actual grenade.

  • 8. CB  |  September 17th, 2009 at 8:04 am

    “Okay”? Who cares? I don’t care what uniform they are wearing or why they are there, lobbing things at twitchy dudes carrying assault rifles is signing yourself up to win a Darwin Award.

  • 9. adam  |  September 17th, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    i wish ames had thrown the shoe 🙂

  • 10. captain america  |  September 17th, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    oh, and now adam gets past the exile censor now too? not even “i wish ames had thrown the shoe and i like to suck cocks”? nothing?

  • 11. W.C. Fields  |  September 17th, 2009 at 8:37 pm

    Goddamn the whole friggin’ world but you, Carlotta!

    To audition for “Fedayeen Feud,” viewers can call the show’s hotline at (323)762-8467.

  • 12. dude  |  September 18th, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    That picture is old, I saw the uncensored one many years before the shoe throwing event and I cannot find any sources that claim what you are saying. If I recall that man was a terrorist who ripped open his shirt revealing what appeared to be a bomb and started shouting the usual suicide bomber’s phrase, “Allāhu Akbar” so a Marine shot him in the head for threatening innocent people’s lives. 1 shot one kill. If anyone raised a shoe toss 1000 bullets it must have been those noob army guys who freak out at everything.

  • 13. Toba  |  September 19th, 2009 at 8:09 am

    Actually, the real story is that the guy threw a slipper and was shot as he was running away. he got 2 bullets but is alive. check out

  • 14. UselessSpace  |  September 19th, 2009 at 10:27 am

    Ames, you know the word “litotes” but not the simple past tense of the verb “see”?

  • 15. Kim Sky  |  September 20th, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    This is frightening. Posting a “story” like this is almost enough to de-legitimize your whole site. Are most of your stories as poorly researched as this one?

    This is a childish Rambo retaliation type myth that makes us — U.S.-americans — seem truly ignorant, selfish, and demonic.

  • 16. Pat Kittle  |  September 26th, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    Pentagon’s latest directive:

    Troops in the field henceforth shall not direct civilians to disperse by yelling


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