Times Reporter John Burns Adjusts to Life After Baghdad

“You can’t just put an ad in the paper and have 30 candidates e-mail you with their CV’s attached,” Mr. Glanz said, acknowledging the issue. “The logistics of everything, including hiring people, and getting to know who’s out there, is tough in Baghdad.”

However, Mr. Glanz said that the bureau under his watch is “not doing so bad,” and mentioned a 4,300-word Sept. 9 cover story (and accompanying interactive Web feature), with a co-byline for Damien Cave and Stephen Farrell, that assessed the success on the ground of the “surge” and included 16 other contributors—most of them Iraqis.

In addition to rotating Times staffers, and Iraqi employees, Mr. Glanz might have one more visitor: “I imagine I will find myself back in Baghdad,” Mr. Burns said. And his wife has remained in Baghdad as bureau manager.

Looking back on the bureau, Mr. Burns recalled a moment when a senior Iraqi staffer told him that The Times “made it possible for us within these walls to be Iraqis—not Shia, Sunnis, Kurds or Christians.”

“We achieved something within the walls of our compound which America seeks to achieve in Iraq,” said Mr. Burns. “We did create a civil society within those four walls.”

“If I’m proud of anything of my time in Baghdad,” he added, “I think we did accomplish that.”