Reporters traveling with military units did not start with the Iraq War. One of the first reporters who traveled with and reported about the military unity he was with was Richard Harding Davis.
Richard Harding Davis had his first reporting job when he was working for the Philadelphia Record. His stories were those we would consider investigative journalism. He infiltrated a gang of thieves and covered the 1889 Johnstown Flood.
He worked for a variety of newspapers during his career, eventually working for the New York Journal which was one of the first newspapers in the Hearst newspaper conglomerate. His job would take him to Latin America where he was able to see first hand the beginning of the Spanish-American war.
Rather than reporting on the tactics and politics of the war, Davis preferred to concentrate on the human interest stories.
While reporting on the war, Davis met Theodore Roosevelt who led the unit known as the Rough Riders. Roosevelt was a charismatic man who liked Davis and encouraged him to travel with and write about his unit. Davis traveled with the Rough Riders. His role was something like being an
embedded reporter with the Rough Riders.
Davis wrote fiction and reported for many years, but he is most famous for his stories about the Rough Riders and the Spanish-American War.