Steven C. Vincent, 49, an American freelance journalist from New York's East Village who had "been staying in Basra for several months working on a book about the history of the city," was found dead August 3, 2005, "less than three miles north of the city center." "An officer in the Basra police department said Mr. Vincent had been working on an article about the role of policemen in the recent assassinations of former Baath Party officials." 
According to a "witness who spoke on the condition of anonymity," Vincent and his female interpreter and close friend Nooriya Tuaiz, 30, also known as Noor al-Khal, were "kidnapped [at gunpoint] around 7 p.m. Tuesday [August 2nd] on a central street in downtown Basra by at least two men dressed in police uniforms and driving a police sedan." 
A hospital spokesman related that Vincent "had been shot three times in the chest ... and the body was dumped in the street. His hands were tied in front with plastic wire; there were bruises on his face and right shoulder, and a strand of red tape that had apparently been used to blindfold him hung loosely around his neck." Tuaiz was seriously wounded. 
"Unlike most reporters working in Iraq," Vincent traveled without guards and was the "first American journalist to be attacked and killed during the war." 
"This is to mourn the murder of the free lance journalist Steven Vincent, a victim of the Sadrist thugs (that is to say, the Iranian-sponsored terrorists) in Basra. His crime was to have written about the fanatics in Basra, who are attempting to create a mini-islamic republic in the south, to the shameful indifference of the British forces and Coalition commanders, and the so-called Left in this country and Europe. If there is ever a day of reckoning, those opinion makers who have remained silent in the face of the monstrous terrorist campaign against the Iraqi people will find it quite impossible to explain their de facto collusion with the terrorists." --Michael Ledeen, National Review, August 3, 2005.
Critical of Basra Police Force and British Military
"In an opinion column published July 31  in The New York Times, Vincent wrote that Basra's police force had been heavily infiltrated by members of Shiite political groups, including those loyal to radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. ... Vincent quoted an unidentified Iraqi police lieutenant as saying that some police were behind many of the assassinations of former Baath Party members that have taken place in Basra. ... Vincent was also critical of the British military, which is responsible for security in Basra, for turning a blind eye to abuses of power by Shiite extremists in the city." 
On his weblog In the Red Zone, Vincent is described as "a freelance investigative journalist and art critic whose work had appeared in major newspapers and magazines including the Wall Street Journal, Harper's, and the Christian Science Monitor." 
Vincent "spent several weeks travelling about Iraq [in 2004], alone and anonymous (under cover as a Yugoslav journalist)." 
"In the Red Zone"
Vincent's recently published book In the Red Zone: A Journey Into the Soul of Iraq is an account of life in a post-Saddam Iraq.
- "An eyewitness of the 9/11 attacks, Steven Vincent went to Iraq to experience the daily realities of life and death in the crossfire of the war on terror. His report is essential for understanding America's enemies and allies in the critical but confusing struggle against radical Islam." --Jeff Harrell, Shape of Days, December 7, 2004.
- "Steven Vincent journeyed twice to Iraq, paying his own way, traveling without security or official connections, living by his wits. His four months in the war zone included a foray into the infamous Mosque of Ali in Najaf, a confrontation with Ayatollah Sistani's bodyguards, a brush with death in a Karbala bombing, meetings with assorted Western 'peace activists,' and run-ins with Iraqi 'authorities' who alternately suspected him of being a CIA agent and a terrorist." --Northern Alliance Radio, November 15, 2004.
- Steven Vincent, In the Red Zone: Into the Soul of Iraq, Spence Publishing (November 2004), ISBN 1890626570.
Related SourceWatch Resources
- Exit Strategy from Iraq
- Iraqi insurgency
- Iraqi unified resistance
- Operation Iraqi Freedom: Year Three: Quagmire
- Post-war Iraq
- Reconstruction of Iraq
By Steven Vincent
- Weblog: In the Red Zone.
- Articles written for Front Page Magazine, August 2003-April 2005.
- "Occupational Hazards. Iraqis have their issues with the U.S.," National Review (posted on aijac.org), October 28, 2003.
- "Islam's Other Holy Books," The American Enterprise (American Enterprise Institute), December 2003. Book Review of Understanding the Hadith: The Sacred Traditions of Islam by Ram Swarup, Prometheus Books.
- "Faith, shame, and insurgency: life in occupied Iraq," Reason (FindArticles.com), March 2004.
- "Uncivil Society," The American Enterprise March 9, 2004.
- "Art against the odds," Art in America (soul-coffee.com), June-July 2004: "On two recent trips to Iraq, the author found that artists are continuing to make work despite the massive upheaval in their country."
- "Grave Injustice. Federal laws about burial remains put politics before science," Reason, July 2004.
- "1000 Points of Light," Democratic Underground, September 11, 2004.
- "The Power of Shame": Five-part series of excerpts from In the Red Zone published by National Review Online. "Together they constitute Chapter 4, 'The 'Resistance.'":
- Part 1: "Why so many American’s don’t get the Sunni opposition," December 13, 2004.
- Part 2: "America the Omnipotent. Many Iraqis overestimated U.S. capabilities," December 14, 2004.
- Part 3: "The Oppressive Occupier? This wasn’t how the liberation was supposed to go," December 15, 2004.
- Part 4: "Rage Against the Foreigner. Dishonor propelled the Sunni insurgency," December 16, 2004.
- Part 5: "The Wrong Words. Moral and linguistic clarity are crucial in this conflict," December 17, 2004.
- "The Civil Rights of Iraqis. It’s a struggle we’ve been through," National Review, January 24, 2005.
- "Everybody Wants to Do It," National Review (iranvajahan.net), March 28, 2005.
- "Back in Basra. One year later, what Iraqis are saying," National Review, June 9, 2005.
- "The Stringer. Hearing Iraqis," National Review, June 14, 2005.
- "Baffled in Basra. Self-defeating behavior persists," National Review, June 21, 2005.
- "In the south, a bid to loosen Baghdad's grip," Christian Science Monitor, June 28, 2005.
- "Shiites bring rigid piety to Iraq's south," Christian Science Monitor (Yahoo! News), July 13, 2005.
- "Iraq's 'FBI' on shoestring budget. The Criminal Identification Division in Basra has 53 pistols and 73 flak jackets for its 101 officers," Christian Science Monitor, July 27, 2005
- "Switched Off in Basra," New York Times, July 31, 2005.
- "On Again, Off Again. A power problem in Basra," National Review, August 2, 2005: "The author of this article, Steven Vincent, was murdered in Basra hours after this was published. A piece of his on Islamists there appeared in the New York Times (and subsequently the International Herald Tribune/also here) [August 1, 2005] this past weekend."
Articles & Commentary
- Pat Robertson, Interview with Steven Vincent: "Rebuilding Iraq: One Man's Journey into the Soul of Iraq," Christian Broadcasting Network, January 12, 2004.
- "In the Red Zone," Northern Alliance Radio, November 15, 2004.
- Jeff Harrell, Review: "In the Red Zone," Shape of Days, December 9, 2004.
- Jeff Harrell, "Interview with Steven Vincent," Shape of Days, December 21, 2004.
- Leo Buchignani, "Review of 'In the Red Zone,' by Steven Vincent," I Killed Che Guevera Blogspot (for Townhall.com), January 13, 2005.
- Mitch, "Democracy in Iraq," Shot in the Dark, June 14, 2005.
- "Reporters on the Job," Christian Science Monitor, July 13, 2005.
- Diana West, Op-Ed: "Nonjudgmentalism and terror," Washington Times, July 29, 2005.
- "U.S. freelance journalist slain in Iraq," CNN, August 3, 2005.
- Kathryn Jean Lopez, "Freedom’s Reporter. Steven Vincent is murdered in pursuit of truth," National Review, August 3, 2005.
- "American journalist found dead in Basra," Associated Press (USA Today/also here), August 3, 2005.
- Edward Wong, "U.S. Journalist Who Wrote About Police Corruption Is Abducted and Killed in Basra," New York Times, August 4, 2005.
- Fayrouz Hancock, "Interviewing Lisa Ramaci," Iraqi In America, December 7, 2005.