Tom Philpott has been breaking news for and about military people since 1977. After service in the Coast Guard, and 17 years as a reporter and senior editor with Army Times Publishing Company, Tom launched "Military Update," his syndicated weekly news column, in 1994. "Military Update" features timely news and analysis on issues affecting active duty members, reservists, retirees and their families. Tom also edits a reader reaction column, "Military Forum." The online "home" for both features is Military.com.
Tom's freelance articles have appeared in numerous magazines including The New Yorker, Reader's Digest and Washingtonian. His critically-acclaimed book, Glory Denied, on the extraordinary ordeal and heroism of Col. Floyd "Jim" Thompson, the longest-held prisoner of war in American history, is available in hardcover and paperback.
See the Military Update Archives
Tom Philpott | May 16, 2013
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the furlough of 680,000 civilian employees for one day a week, from early July through September, to avoid taking deeper cuts in training and maintenance, which could have degraded readiness to the point of threatening "core missions," he said. The Department of Defense furlough plan will cut work hours and... more
Tom Philpott | May 09, 2013
Base commissaries face turbulent times as staff vacancies swell under a federal hiring freeze, employee furloughs remain a worry and the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) digests budget guidance for fiscal 2015 that will force new efficiencies on stores and possibly deeper cuts to store operations. The guidance directs at least a five percent ($... more
Tom Philpott | May 03, 2013
DoD Health Office Loses Control of E-Record Project After five years and an estimated $1 billion spent trying to build a single integrated electronic health record (iEHR) system with the Department of Veterans Affairs, defense health officials have been taken off the project, sources confirm. Wielding the hook was Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel... more
Tom Philpott | Apr 25, 2013
'Pros' Make Case Against Pay Caps, Higher Tricare Fees Military folks upset by Obama administration proposals to cap pay raises, to phase-in sharply higher co-pays on prescriptions filled off base and to raise TRICARE costs on working-age retirees also tend to rail against such changes with arguments politicians can shrug off as stale or in err... more
Tom Philpott | Apr 19, 2013
Rahm Emanuel, while serving as President Obama’s first chief of staff, once advised not to let a “crisis go to waste” because that’s when politicians will do things they otherwise wouldn’t. Defense officials seem to have taken that advice to heart amid the current debt crisis with their plan to boost co-payments on military family members and r... more