Bob Woodward

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Robert Upshur ("Bob") Woodward (b. Geneva, Illinois, 1943) is a journalist and author who has worked for the liberal The Washington Post since 1971, and is currently an associate editor and assistant managing editor of the Post. He is best known for his Pulitzer Prize winning coverage about the Watergate affair that contributed to liberal efforts to force Richard Nixon out of the presidency. A former Navy lieutenant, Woodward has been a recipient of several major American journalism awards.

Woodward is also known for writing about a dozen non-fiction books, many of which have been best-sellers. He wrote The Brethren, an unprecedented exposé of internal workings at the Supreme Court in the late 1960s and early 1970s as apparently told by clerks who violated their duty of confidentiality. The book embarrassed the Court, and reportedly angered Chief Justice Warren Burger.

In 1980, the Washington Post published a dramatic story called "Jimmy's World",[1][2] describing the life of an eight-year-old heroin addict in Washington, for which reporter Janet Cooke was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize by Woodward. Cooke subsequently won the prize. An investigation, however, revealed the story to be a fabrication. The Pulitzer Prize was returned.

Post Ombudsman Bill Green concluded an investigation with several comments and recommendations, including "The scramble for journalistic prizes is poisonous. The obligation is to inform readers, not to collect frameable certificates, however prestigious. Maybe The Post should consider not entering contests."[2] Woodward, responding to the Ombudsman's report, stated,

It would be absurd for me or any other editor to review the authenticity or accuracy of stories that are nominated for prizes.

Woodward wrote a glowing review of Democratic presidential candidate Gary Hart's 1985 book The Double Man. But a few years later the Washington Post played a central role in forcing Gary Hart out of the 1988 presidential race:[3]

The Washington Post reported today that Gary Hart decided to withdraw from the Presidential campaign hours after the newspaper presented a top campaign official with "documented evidence of a recent liaison between Hart and a Washington woman."

Another candidate who enjoyed greater support by the liberal media, Michael Dukakis, was then able to win the Democratic nomination, but he subsequently lost in the general election to President George H.W. Bush.

In 1998 the Post newsroom under Woodward's management printed a series of denials regarding public leaks of depositions given by President Clinton in the Jones v Clinton case contrary to an Order of the Court. Dr. Deni Elliot of the Practical Ethics Center after reviewing the matter concluded the Washington Post knew the source of the illegal leaks yet "knowingly deceived its readers" by alleging the leaks could have come from the Court or the opposing councels office. Dr. Elliot wrote in the Organization of News Ombudsmen’s publication, “The Post intentionally lied to its readers in printing this set of denials", and "None of this sounds like the making of ethical principals".[4]


Selected works from Woodward's bibliography:

All the President's Men - about the Watergate scandal, (1974), written with Carl Bernstein.

The Brethren: Inside the Supreme Court, (1979), written with Scott Armstrong.

Bush At War, (2002)

Obama’s Wars (2010), is Woodward’s 16th book. The book covers the Obama administration's decision-making process about troop levels in Afghanistan and details the internal squabbles among administration ... [5]

Bob Woodward’s first book on the administration of President Barack Obama, “Obama’s Wars”, will be published by Simon and Schuster on September 27, 2010.

After working behind the scenes for 18 months, Woodward has written the most intimate and sweeping portrait of Obama at work with his team. Drawing on internal memos, classified documents, meeting notes and hundreds of hours of interviews with most of the key players, including the president, Woodward reveals Obama’s critical decisions about the Afghanistan War, the secret war in Pakistan and the worldwide fight against terrorism.[6]

External links


  1. Washington Post Archives: Article. (1980-09-28). Retrieved on 2009-04-04.
  4. [1]
  5. Bob Woodward's latest exploration of the presidency -- "Obama's Wars"
  6. Obama’s Wars