Thom Shanker is the National Security and Foreign Policy Editor for The New York Times Washington bureau. He joined the editing ranks in 2014 after serving for thirteen years as Pentagon correspondent for The Times, covering the Defense Department, deployed military forces and national security issues. He has made dozens of reporting trips to Afghanistan and Iraq, including embed assignments with Special Operations forces and units from squad though corps command.
He is co-author of Counterstrike: The Untold Story of America’s Secret Campaign Against Al Qaeda, a New York Times bestseller.
Before joining The Times in 1997, he was foreign editor of The Chicago Tribune. Mr. Shanker was The Tribune’s senior European correspondent, based in Berlin, from 1992 to 1995. Most of that time was spent covering the wars in former Yugoslavia, where Mr. Shanker was the first reporter to uncover and write about the Serb campaign of systematic mass rape of Muslim women.
He spent five years as The Tribune’s Moscow correspondent, covering from the start of the Gorbachev era to the death of the U.S.S.R. and the collapse of the communist empire in Eastern Europe.
Mr. Shanker attended the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, studying strategic nuclear policy, international law and public diplomacy. He serves as a nonresident senior fellow at the Edward R. Murrow Center for a Digital World, based at Tufts University. He graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in political science from Colorado College, and was awarded an honorary doctor of laws by the college.