August 03, 2005

Stephen Vincent Murdered

Author Stephen Vincent was kidnapped and murdered in Basra, Iraq.

A US freelance reporter, Steven Vincent, has been shot dead by unknown gunmen in Basra, southern Iraq, police have said.

Mr Vincent was abducted with his female Iraqi translator at gun point by men in a police car on Tuesday.

His bullet-riddled body was found on the side of a highway south of the city a few hours later.

Vincent was the author of "Into The Red Zone", his chronicle of his first trip through Iraq, alone, posing as a Yugoslav journalist. He wrote the In The Red Zone blog. He'd been a guest on the NARN twice, and they were two of the best interviews we ever had.

It appears he may have made some influential enemies:

In a recent New York Times article, Mr Vincent wrote that Basra's police force had been infiltrated by Shia militants.

He quoted a senior Iraqi police lieutenant saying some officers were behind many of the killings of former Baath party members in Basra.

Vincent was highly critical of the British administration of the Basra area; the British practice, derived from their colonial background, is to pick the local faction they most want in charge and let them do the enforcing for them. Vincent exposed many of the problems in this approach.

My personal condolences to the Vincent family.

Posted by Mitch at August 3, 2005 08:18 AM | TrackBack

First and foremost, agreed..


It is said that free access to information is the preservator of liberty, and the press is the guardian of that information. Murdering those who would report the truth implies by design, you fear the truth.

As discussed in the following:

The Iranians are subverting the Shia populace, and Mr. Vincent made it known that Shia radicalism was corrupting the police force. Such things are sad tidings, made even sadder when decent people are killed merely for telling the world that information is really only data until we critically examine it.

Posted by: PB at August 3, 2005 09:29 AM

I was out here in radioland listening to the NARN interview of Mr. Vincent. I agree, it was one of the best moments in the history of the show, as it was memorable and highly informative.

I cannot forget my amazement at the robust fearlessness of this man. He was chomping at the bit to get back to Iraq so he could continue his work. He'd promised to reprise his appearance on NARN one day to let us know what he'd have learned.
Very sadly, that day will never come now.

This terrible news is yet another reminder of the savagery of our enemies.

Posted by: pinkmonkeybird at August 3, 2005 11:25 PM

At the risk of a "whaaaat???"

I saw a clip on the Police Chief of Nuevo-Laredo Mexico last night. I thought there was a lot of violence in Iraq/the Middle East, but was reminded of the long, mostly ignored, declared war on Narco-trafficing we've been waging for decades. The big lesson is sponsorship. As long as the 'bad guys' have a sponsor (nation-state or cartel) with nearly limitless resources, the nut becomes very hard to crack.

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