World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Thomas E. Ricks (journalist)

Thomas E. Ricks
Thomas Ricks in 2007
Ricks in 2007, posing with his book Fiasco
Born Thomas Edwin Ricks
(1955-09-25) September 25, 1955
Beverly, Massachusetts, United States
Education BA
Alma mater Yale University, 1977
Occupation Writer, journalist, editor, and educator
Employer Center for a New American Security
Known for critique of U.S. national security policy, especially Operation Iraqi Freedom
Title Senior Fellow
Awards 2000 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting (on Wall Street Journal team) for articles on how the U.S. Military might change to meet twenty-first-century demands
2002 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting (on Washington Post team) for reporting about the beginnings of the U.S. counteroffensive against terrorism
Society of Professional Journalists Award for best feature reporting.
2007 Distinguished alumnus of Scarsdale High School

Thomas Edwin "Tom" Ricks (born September 25, 1955)[5] is an American journalist who writes on defense topics. He is a Pulitzer Prize-winning former reporter for the Wall Street Journal and Washington Post. He writes a blog at[6] and is a member of the Center for a New American Security,[7] a defense policy think tank.

He lectures widely to the military and is a member of Harvard University's Senior Advisory Council on the Project on U.S. Civil-Military Relations. He has reported on military activities in Somalia, Haiti, Korea, Bosnia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Kuwait, Turkey, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Ricks is author of five books: the bestselling Fiasco: The American Military Adventure In Iraq (2006), its follow-up The Gamble: General David Petraeus and the American Military Adventure in Iraq, 2006-2008 (2009), The Generals: American Military Command from World War II to Today (2012), the novel A Soldier's Duty (2001), and Making the Corps (1997).[8]


  • Life and career 1
  • Bibliography 2
    • Ricks' writings 2.1
    • Writings about Ricks 2.2
    • Interviews 2.3
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Life and career

Ricks was born in Beverly, Massachusetts, and grew up in New York and Afghanistan, one of six children. He is the son of Anne and David Frank Ricks, a professor of psychology.[9] He attended the American International School in Kabul (1968–1970), including his freshman year of high school.[10] He graduated from Scarsdale High School (1973).[4]

After earning a degree at Yale (1977), he was an instructor at Lingnan College, Hong Kong (1977–1979), and assistant editor at the Wilson Quarterly (1979–1981). At the Wall Street Journal he was a reporter (1982–1985) and deputy Miami bureau chief (1986). In Washington, D.C., he was a Journal reporter (1987–1989), feature editor (1989–1992), and Pentagon correspondent, (1992–1999). He was a military correspondent at the Washington Post (2000–2008).[1][2][5][11]

While at the Wall Street Journal, he was one of the reporters writing the "Price of Power" series discussing United States defense spending and potential changes confronting the US military following the Cold War. The series won the Journal the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting.[11] Ricks was a finalist for the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction for his book Fiasco.[12]

While being interviewed on Fox News by Jon Scott regarding the 2012 Benghazi attack, Ricks accused Fox News of being "extremely political" in its coverage of the attack and said that "Fox was operating as a wing of the Republican Party." The interview was subsequently cut short after only 90 seconds.[13]


Ricks' writings

Writings about Ricks

  • Booklist, October 15, 1997, Gilbert Taylor, review of Making the Corps, p. 368; May 1, 2001, Gilbert Taylor, review of A Soldier's Duty, p. 1668.
  • The Economist, August 19, 2006, "A Litany of Abuse: America and Iraq," review of Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq, p. 71.
  • Harvard Crimson Review of Fiasco [1]
  • Insight on the News, December 15, 1997, Woody West, review of Making the Corps, p. 36.
  • Library Journal, May 1, 2001, Robert Conroy, review of A Soldier's Duty, p. 127.
  • Middle East Policy, winter, 2006, W. Patrick Lang, review of Fiasco, p. 154.
  • Military Review, September–October 2006, Brian C. McNemey, review of Fiasco, p. 115.
  • National Review, September 11, 2006, Bing West, "Iraq: Phase One," review of Fiasco, p. 42.
  • New York Times, July 25, 2006, Michiko Kakutani, "From Planning to Warfare to Occupation, How Iraq Went Wrong," review of Fiasco, p. E1. [2]
  • New York Times Book Review, August 13, 2006, Jacob Heilbrunn, "Eyes Wide Shut," review of Fiasco, p. 1, and Dwight Garner, "TBR: Inside the List," review of Fiasco, p. 1; December 3, 2006, "100 Notable Books of the Year," review of Fiasco, p. 14.
  • Policy Review, December 2006, Victor Davis Hanson, "Whose Fiasco?," review of Fiasco, p. 89.
  • Publishers Weekly, October 6, 1997, review of Making the Corps, p. 65; April 20, 2001, review of A Soldier's Duty, p. 53.
  • TIME, December 25, 2006, Steve Koepp and Mark Thompson, "The Real War," interview with Thomas E. Ricks, p. 158.
  • Washington Monthly, October 2006, Joseph Galloway, review of Fiasco, p. 60; March 2007, review of Fiasco, p. 66.
  • Weekly Standard, August 7, 2006, Max Boot, "Battle for Baghdad: Lessons Learned from the War in Iraq," review of Fiasco.


  • Frontline Web site, (January 28, 2004), interview with Thomas E. Ricks.
  • Washington Post Web site, (April 15, 2007), biography of Thomas E. Ricks.


  1. ^ a b Contemporary Authors Online, Gale, 2009. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Michigan: Gale, 2009. Document Number: H1000132733. Fee. Accessed 2009-12-01 via Fairfax County Public Library.
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b
  5. ^ a b
  6. ^ Ricks' current blog at
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ a b Contemporary Authors Online, Gale, 2009. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Gale, 2009. Document Number: H1000082835. Fee. Accessed 2009-12-01 via Fairfax County Public Library.
  12. ^
  13. ^

External links

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.