Friday, October 29, 2010
Maybe because I'm feeling magnanimous this week or maybe it's because of yesterday's serious drama, but I'm officially lifting my boycott of Tom Ricks at The Best Defense. My opinion of Tom has ebbed and waned over the years, starting with very high esteem after I read Fiasco while in Iraq during the Surge. That book was one of the biggest reasons I'm in the business I'm in now - it had a huge influence on my professional life. But I slowly became disappointed with his writing and what I perceived as a lack of analysis in his new role as a blogger (and fellow at CNAS). This is only because I expected so much more from him after Fiasco and my expectations were not met.
However, those were my expectations - not any promises Tom made to me (after all I've only met him once or twice in person and very briefly at CNAS events) or any of his other readers. After consideration, it's not fair to him for me to project my own expectations on his work. He also runs a blog all on his own and posts multiple times a day (granted with many, many guest posts) and if I did that I would post plenty of things most of you would disagree with as well. This does not mean that I agree with everything he writes (or posts from guest bloggers), but the man still drives a lot of the conversation on defense issues in this town and around the interwebs because of his vast experience in the field when he covered it for a number of news outlets. When I look at what gets posted on the internet as a whole, Tom's blog is definitely towards the top of sane and reasonable. Even if I disagree with a lot of his content.
So Tom - your blog is back in my reader and my boycott is lifted. I do apologize for the snarky (and probably rude) things that I've said on this blog. I stand by the critiques of your work that I've written, but not the tone of some of them. And I'll probably continue to critique your work I disagree with in the future as well as point out when I agree and I think it's particularly good.