Steve Inskeep

Steve Inskeep is host of NPR's Morning Edition, the most widely heard radio news program in the United States. He co-hosts the program with Renee Montagne and David Greene.

Known for probing questions to everyone from presidents to warlords to musicians, Inskeep has a passion for stories of the less famous—like an American soldier who lost both feet in Afghanistan, or an Ethiopian woman's extraordinary journey to the United States.

Since joining Morning Edition in 2004, Inskeep has hosted the program from New Orleans, Detroit, Karachi, Cairo, Houston and Tehran; investigated Iraqi police in Baghdad; and received a 2006 Robert F. Kennedy journalism award for "The Price of African Oil," on conflict in Nigeria. In 2012 he traveled 2,700 miles across North Africa in the wake of the Arab Spring. In 2013 he reported from war-torn Syria, and on Iran's historic election. In 2014 he drove with colleagues 2,428 miles along the entire U.S.-Mexico border; the resulting radio series, "Borderland," won widespread attention, as did the acclaimed NPR online magazine of the same name.

Inskeep says Morning Edition works to "slow down the news," making sense of fast-moving events. A prime example came during the 2008 Presidential campaign, when Inskeep and NPR's Michele Norris conducted "The York Project," groundbreaking conversations about race, which received an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton for excellence.

Inskeep was hired by NPR in 1996. His first full-time assignment was the 1996 presidential primary in New Hampshire. He went on to cover the Pentagon, the Senate, and the 2000 presidential campaign of George W. Bush. After the September 11, 2001, attacks, he covered the war in Afghanistan, turmoil in Pakistan, and the war in Iraq. In 2003, he received a National Headliner Award for investigating a military raid gone wrong in Afghanistan. He has twice been part of NPR News teams awarded the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton for coverage of Iraq.

On days of bad news, Inskeep is inspired by the Langston Hughes book, Laughing to Keep From Crying. Of hosting Morning Edition during the 2008 financial crisis and Great Recession, he told Nuvo magazine when "the whole world seemed to be falling apart, it was especially important for me ... to be amused, even if I had to be cynically amused, about the things that were going wrong. Laughter is a sign that you're not defeated."

Inskeep is the author of Instant City: Life and Death in Karachi, a 2011 book on one of the world's great megacities. He is also author of Jacksonland, a forthcoming history of President Andrew Jackson's long-running conflict with John Ross, a Cherokee chief who resisted the removal of Indians from the eastern United States in the 1830's.

He has been a guest on numerous TV programs including ABC's This Week, NBC's Meet the Press, MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell Reports, CNN's Inside Politics and the PBS Newhour. He has written for publications including The New York Times, Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, and The Atlantic.

A native of Carmel, Indiana, Inskeep is a graduate of Morehead State University in Kentucky.

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Parallels
3:40 am
Wed March 11, 2015

In The West Bank, Living Side By Side — But Agreeing On Nothing

Murad al-Khuffash (right) and his twin brother, Hazem, are Palestinian farmers living in Marda. Khuffash remembers when settlers took charge of Ariel in the 1970s.
Tanya Habjouqa for NPR

Originally published on Wed March 11, 2015 3:06 pm

No matter how much you've read about the struggle for land in the Middle East, it deepens your understanding to visit an Israeli settlement in the West Bank.

The Israeli settlements, founded in areas that Israel captured in the 1967 Six-Day War, raise some of the more contentious issues in the conflict.

Israel is under pressure to stop building them, and eventually to surrender many of them to make way for a future Palestinian state. The United Nations long ago said they are not legal, and critics of Israel cite them as a reason to boycott or divest from the Jewish state.

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Parallels
3:34 am
Fri February 20, 2015

Iranians Wait And Wonder If A New Dawn Is Coming

Sara Noghani (left) and Pooya Shahsiah, in their shop, Tehran Collage. Many of their designs feature words from Persian poetry that speak of a new dawn.
Molly Messick NPR

Originally published on Fri February 20, 2015 9:43 am

When we walked into a shopping mall in Tehran, Pooya Shahsiah was waiting for us at the top of the escalator. She's the co-owner of a trendy little shop on the second floor that sells shirts, scarves, cups and jewelry. Cloth hangs along the walls in reds and yellows and blues.

There is, for example, a purple shirt with a colorful illustration of a rooster crowing. Parts of the rooster are made out of Persian words.

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Parallels
3:25 am
Thu February 19, 2015

Iran's Jews: It's Our Home And We Plan To Stay

Iranian Jewish men read from the Torah scroll during morning prayers at Youssef Abad Synagogue in Tehran in 2013.
Behrouz Mehri AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 19, 2015 9:33 am

Iran is a country where people at rallies routinely chant "Death to Israel." It's also home to the largest Jewish population in the Middle East outside of Israel and Turkey.

Iran's Jewish population topped 100,000 in the years before the Shah of Iran was toppled in 1979 by the country's Shiite Muslim clerics. Today, the number of Jews has dipped to below 9,000.

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Middle East
5:15 am
Wed February 18, 2015

'You Are Invited': Isolated Iran Seeks Foreign Tourists

People ride a horse and carriage through Isfahan's central square in June 2014. With its immense mosques, picturesque bridges and ancient bazaar, the city is a virtual living museum of Iranian traditional culture and is a top tourist destination. After decades of difficult relations with the West, Iran now says it wants more foreign tourists, including Westerners.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 18, 2015 11:39 am

Two events last week suggested the conflicting currents in Iran. The country marked the anniversary of its revolution last Wednesday with the usual slogan, "Death to America." The following day, Iran opened an international tourism exhibition with a different slogan: "You are invited."

Iran wants to welcome more international tourists, including Americans. But that's a challenge for a country that's wary of outsiders, and closely monitors its own people.

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Middle East
5:05 am
Tue February 17, 2015

On Iran's Streets, 'Death To America' ... And Hope For A Nuclear Deal

Iranians commemorate the 36th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution near the Azadi Tower in Tehran on Wednesday. While many Iranians would like to reorder relations with the West, there's also plenty of skepticism about whether it will actually happen.
Ebrahim Noroozi AP

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 1:01 pm

At the anniversary of Iran's revolution, Iranians still chanted "Death to America." Yet many we encountered in a brief visit to the country seemed prepared to shift relations with the West.

We interviewed more than 20 people in three cities: Tehran, Isfahan and Kashan. Our talks were very far from a scientific sample. They took place in a country where citizens must speak with great care.

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