Tom Bowman

Tom Bowman is a NPR National Desk reporter covering the Pentagon.

In his current role, Bowman has traveled to Iraq and Afghanistan often for month-long visits and embedded with U.S. Marines and soldiers.

Before coming to NPR in April 2006, Bowman spent nine years as a Pentagon reporter at The Baltimore Sun. Altogether he was at The Sun for nearly two decades, covering the Maryland Statehouse, the U.S. Congress, the U.S. Naval Academy, and the National Security Agency (NSA). His coverage of racial and gender discrimination at NSA led to a Pentagon investigation in 1994.

Initially Bowman imagined his career path would take him into academia as a history, government, or journalism professor. During college Bowman worked as a stringer at The Patriot Ledger in Quincy, Mass., and thrived amid the deadlines, the competition, and the personalities both at a newspaper and in the political realm. Bowman also worked for the Daily Transcript in Dedham, Mass., and then as a reporter at States News Service, writing for the Miami Herald and the Anniston (Ala.) Star.

Over his career, Bowman has been honored with several awards for news writing and features, from the New England Press Association and the Maryland Press Association. He is also a co-winner of a 2006 National Headliners' Award for stories on the lack of advanced tourniquets for U.S. troops in Iraq. In 2010, Bowman received an Edward R. Murrow Award for his coverage of a Taliban roadside bomb attack on an Army unit.

Bowman earned a Bachelor of Arts in history from St. Michael's College in Winooski, Vermont, and a master's degree in American Studies from Boston College.

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Economy
5:02 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Pentagon Remains Big Target In Likely Budget Cuts

The winding down of the war in Afghanistan and efforts to slice the budget deficit will likely mean more spending cuts for the Pentagon.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 6:17 pm

The economy shrunk in the fourth quarter — for the first time in three years — and one of the critical reasons was a drop in defense spending. Apparently, contractors took precautionary steps and held onto money in case the federal government failed to avert the fiscal and tax crisis known as the fiscal cliff.

But there's now a new deadline — automatic budget cuts, known as sequestration, which may hit at the beginning of March.

The Effect On Contractors

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U.S.
4:50 pm
Thu January 31, 2013

Hagel Grilled By Fellow Republicans At Conformation Hearing

Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 11:53 am

President Obama's pick to lead the Pentagon testified in a confirmation hearing before a Senate panel on Thursday. Former Sen. Chuck Hagel, a Republican, faces opposition chiefly from members of his own party. Senators grilled him over his support for Israel, American policy toward Iran, and cutbacks in the defense budget.

World
3:28 pm
Wed January 23, 2013

U.S. Military Seeks Its Role In Troubled North Africa

Gen. Carter Ham, who heads the U.S. Africa Command, meets with Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika last September. Amid upheaval in the region, AFRICOM is still attempting to define its mission.
Farouk Batiche Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 23, 2013 7:53 pm

The recent crises in northern Africa, from Libya to Mali to Algeria, have raised a host of questions about the role of the American military command responsible for the entire continent.

Founded in 2007, the United States Africa Command, or AFRICOM, was created to train African militaries so U.S. troops would not be called upon in times of crisis.

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Afghanistan
4:39 am
Thu January 10, 2013

How Many U.S. Forces Will Afghan Mission Need After 2014?

Originally published on Thu January 10, 2013 2:04 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Those decisions about U.S. troop levels will have an impact on the lives of people in Afghanistan, especially in places where the Taliban insurgency remains active, like Kandahar. Kandahar is, of course, the birthplace of the Taliban movement. And to find out more about what Afghans are thinking about the U.S. drawdown, we reached Ehsan Ullah Ehsan, who is the director of a school in Kandahar, the Kandahar Institute of Modern Studies, which has offered, for several years, instruction to girls in computers, English and business management.

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Africa
3:23 pm
Tue December 25, 2012

Islamist Militant Groups On The Rise In Africa

Robert Siegel talks to Ofeibea Quist-Arcton and Tom Bowman about the U.S. fight against terrorism in Africa, where the number of Islamist militant groups is on the rise — some with close ties to al-Qaida.

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