I had several near death experiences or very, you know, close calls, if you may, in Iraq. You know, there was an incident where I was nearly kidnapped.
— Farnaz Fassihi
The first time I went to Iraq was October 2002, when Saddam was still in power, and then, subsequently, in January of 2003, about three-and-a-half months before the U.S. invasion. So, I got to see the before and after of Iraq, basically, before and after the war.
I have lucky boots for military embeds, a lucky scarf for road trips, a lucky handbag, and lucky days of the week. I tap into my gut for 'right' or 'wrong' feelings about such simple things as whether I should go grocery shopping.
Almost immediately, I remember right when Tikrit even fell, a few days after Baghdad fell, there was talks of insurgency, there was talks of jihad and of resisting the American occupiers, and slowly this turned into an organized movement.