Steven Vincent killed in Basra

Someone has killed Steven Vincent, author of “In the Red Zone,” in Basra two days after he wrote a New York Times op-ed criticizing the Basra police:

BAGHDAD, Iraq – An American freelance journalist was found dead in the southern Iraqi city of Basra, the U.S. Embassy said Wednesday.

Police said Steven Vincent had been shot multiple times after he and his Iraqi translator were abducted at gunpoint hours earlier.

“I can confirm to you that officials in Basra have recovered the body of journalist Steven Vincent,” said embassy spokesman Pete Mitchell. “The U.S. Embassy is working with British military and local Iraqi officials in Basra to determine who is responsible for the death of this journalist.”

I didn’t know Steve, but his agent, Andrew Stuart, is my former book agent. He was also a blogger and was researching another book, this one on post-war Basra. Already the comments section on the latest post is filling up. I also didn’t agree with much of what he wrote, but he was intrepid enough to spend months living in Basra, which is a hard thing for a westerner to do.

It is unknown if he was killed for his coverage or if it was kidnapping and robbery gone sour. All I know is that my thoughts go out to his family and friends.

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