Category Archives: In The Red Zone Blog

In the Red Zone was the live blog that Steven Vincent contributed to while he was in Iraq


April 5, 2013 // by admin

March 2, 2005: If you apply for a job then you’re an “agent” and if you want to see democracy and freedom in your country then you’re an “infidel” and if you say that resistance is terrorism then you’re a “traitor”. In all cases your blood is cheap and you have to die. This is […]


April 5, 2013 // by admin

Note:  After a brief blogging-hiatus to complete some (paying) assignments (as in this month’s Reason, where I have an article on a topic only tangentially related to Iraq), I’ve decided to make some changes in Redzone’s format.  Less original material, more links.  Easier to read, easier to write, more user- and producer-friendly, etc.  In addition, I’ll post material all […]

Every day is Ashura

April 5, 2013 // by admin

Every day is Ashura, and every land is Karbala… So say the Shia.  Ashura is their Eastertide, the festival of mourning in which Shiites commemorate the martyrdom of Imam Hussain at Karbala in 680 AD.  Although devotionalists observed Ashua late last month, photographs of its various worldwide incarnations are still appearing on the web.  To […]


March 29, 2005 // by admin

No picnic They say freedom means they can do what they want. This is not freedom. Freedom does not mean you can transgress traditions. There are traditions and rules in an Eastern society that are different from a Western society. Every Iraqi has a right to act against these transgressions. — Heider Jabari, spokesman for […]


March 28, 2005 // by admin

Not sure where or why this idea originated, but there’s some sort of quickie lit-quiz bouncing around the blogosphere, and evidently ’tis my turn to reply.  Since I’ve been “tagged” by superblogger Arthur Chrenkoff, I shan’t question the particulars nor tarry long ere I respond.    Besides, I’m a sucker for surveys. You’re stuck inside Fahrenheit 451, […]


March 26, 2005 // by admin

More than just a physiological function, memory has its moral injunctions, as well.  To remember–the word is derived from the Latin word rememorari, “to be mindful of”–enjoins us not to forget, not to let slip into oblivion, but to maintain a space in our thoughts for the presence of something, or someone.  This space can range from […]


March 25, 2005 // by admin

The deadly snicker Bullets and explosives may kill anti-Iraqi fascists, intelligence may round up and imprison their cells.  But the most lethal weapon–the power that corrodes, weakens and will eventually break their morale–is laughter.  When the world, especially the Muslim world, ceases to perceive Islamoterrorists with admiration and fear, but with ridicule and contempt, the ability […]


March 18, 2005 // by admin

Present at the Creation We are witnessing the genesis of two momentous memes.  The first is women + eroticism + sexual freedom = democracy.  This was one of the daemons that infused rock and roll (beforeSgt. Pepper killed it) with such infernal energy and exploded into the Sexual Revolution 40 years ago.  Message to the Middle East:  […]

They ‘shura like being there

March 18, 2005 // by admin

They ‘shura like being there Images via Discarded Lies of the ungodly goings-on at theHussainiyya Hullabaloo in Tehran.  (See below)   Look what happens when the authorities allow the sexes to intermingle!  Obviously this sort of irreligious behavior must stop.  Instead, let us return to more traditional means of observing Ashura, without the dangerous distractions of carnal thoughts, flirtation […]

Democratic Divas

March 17, 2005 // by admin

  Ah, the inscrutable East.  Or in this case, Middle East.  In Baghdad, I’d often go down to my hotel lobby to find men seated before the television set smoking cigarettes and drinking tea, watching with rapt attention as some dark-eyed hourishimmied in come-and-get-me lasciviousness to the strains of an Arabic pop song.  Fifty feet past […]