David Wood writes about war for Politics Daily. In 30 years of covering conflict, he has filed dispatches from dozens of battlefields (alphabetically, from Afghanistan to Zambia) and has embedded many times with U.S. Army and Marine Corps units as well as with guerrillas and brigands in Africa. He is a birthright Quaker and former conscientious objector, and was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for his reporting on conflict, national security and foreign affairs.
As a correspondent successively for Time Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, Newhouse News Service and the Baltimore Sun, Wood has reported from the Kremlin in Moscow and has toured a Chinese missile submarine. During the Cold War he patrolled the Fulda Gap with the 11th Cavalry Regiment and snuck across the East German border to visit the opposing force, a Russian motorized rifle regiment. He got to know soldier-amputees during the Contra war in Nicaragua and, with a U.S. intelligence agent, made the rounds of Bosnian brothels to collect gossip on Serb officers and politicians.
He has accompanied American troops into battle many times, in Somalia, Iraq and Afghanistan, most recently with 1st Battalion 6th Marines for six weeks on combat operations in Kandahar and Helmand provinces, and has accompanied U.S. forces on stability operations in the Balkans, Haiti and Panama. He has flown on a B-52 bomber mission, slogged through Army Ranger school, accompanied Rangers on nighttime airborne maneuvers and with Marines on amphibious and air assaults. He has flown off aircraft carriers and sailed on battleships, cruisers, minesweepers, amphibs and attack and strategic missile submarines. He has flown in the cargo compartment of an African bush plane and crouched behind the pilot of a battered C-130 as it lost an engine while careening on final approach into Baghdad.
He has been scared much of his professional life.
Wood has won the Gerald Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on National Defense, and in 2008 won the Headliners Club award for his reporting on Iraq. He has lectured at the Marine Staff College, the Joint Forces Staff College and the Army's Eisenhower Fellows conference, and has appeared on CNN, CSPAN, the PBS News Hour, and on BBC and National Public Radio.