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One man dared

Muntadhar al zaidi was tortured
I’d like to revisit photographs of George Bush. On everyone pictured standing next to him, I’ll stamp “NOT AL-ZAIDI,” meaning, NOT A HERO. The tag would apply to all of us of course, but in particular, to those who had a chance -but didn’t- to confront the naked emperor. The single bravest man in the world, Muntadhar al Zaidi, was released from prison this week, to recount the torture he endured for his act. Is your courage bolstered or tempered by his example? We are inspired by the unbroken Al Zaidi, but his keepers, our governments, know how to repress our audacity. We’re let to celebrate Al Zaidi as a hero, but he has also been made an example, for rule by state terrorism.

Said al Zaidi: “What provoked me to a confrontation was the injustice that has befallen my people, and the way in which the occupation wanted to humiliate my country by placing it and its people—the elderly, women, children and men—under its boot. At the time the Iraqi prime minister appeared on satellite channels saying he would not sleep until he was assured of Bush’s safety, I found ample bedding and cover. As the prime minister was speaking, I was being tortured in the most cruel manner, being electrocuted, beaten with cables, beaten with metal rods.”

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