Ahmadinejad gets shoe'd in Cairo

Though it's hard to tell what's going on in the video above, apparently it's footage of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad getting a shoe thrown at him outside Cairo's al-Hussein mosque. 

RT, citing Turkey's Anatolia news agency, reports that the alleged shoer was a Syrian who has been taken into custody

The attacker, who attempted to hit President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as he left a mosque, is reported to be a young man with “a Syrian accent”. Egyptian security forces managed to seize and arrest the man following the incident.

The attacker was heard chanting anti-Iranian slogans for supporting the Syrian government, the news agency noted.

This may not be be Iranian leader's first time getting hit with a shoe -- the gesture of protest made famous by Iraqi journalist Muntadhar al-Zaidi in 2008. An Iranian website reported in 2009 that Ahmadinejad had a shoe and a hat thrown at him while campaigning in the city of Urmia. There were no videos or images of that incident.


Why are al Qaeda members still U.S. citizens anyway?

NBC News has revealed a 16-page Justice Department memo laying out the conditions under which the government can authorize the killing of a U.S. citizen. Mark Ambinder has a good summary of the memo, which essentially says the person must represent an "imminent threat" of an attack in the United States and must be in a place where capturing them must be infeasible. Spencer Ackerman looks into the increasingly flexible definition of "imminence" here

Some readers might be confused about why American al Qaeda members such as Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan are still U.S. citizens. You may have noticed text on your passport noting that you  "may lose your U.S. citizenship" by "serving in the armed forces of a foreign state." Why isn't joining a terrorist organization and advocating attacks against the United States grounds for losing your citizenship?

Ironically, it's thanks to a 1967 Supreme Court case involving an Israeli-American artist.  In a 2011 explainer on a somewhat related topic, I wrote

In the 1967 case Afroyim v. Rusk, the Supreme Court ruled that under the 14th amendment, U.S. citizens cannot be involuntarily stripped of their citizenship. (That case involved a dual U.S.-Israeli citizen who had his U.S. citizenship revoked after voting in an Israeli election, but the precedent applies to military service as well.)  

Since Afroyim, it's been nearly impossible for someone to be involuntarily stripped of U.S. citizenship. Even if you join a foreign army fighting against the United States, the law says you will only lose your citizenship if you do so "with the intention of relinquishing United States nationality." That intention can be tough to prove, and in Awlaki's case, the administration made no effort to do so. 

GOP House members have introduced legislation to investigate whether joining a terrorist organization constitutes a renunciation of citizenship. But frankly, given that U.S. citizenship doesn't seem to provide much protection when a drone has you in its sights, I'm not sure there would be any point.