The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Monday, December 29, 2003

Pentagon gunning for WaPo journo Tom Ricks

One for future reference - via Romanesko:

Ricks is a veteran on the defence beat - previously with the Wall Street Journal - but only now, according to the Washingtonian (November 29) does the DOD - in the form of
Defense Department spokesman Larry DiRita
complain about him.

The whole story is unsatisfactory - guesswork on the possible grounds for complaint, for instance [1]; and the WaPo suits are defending their man to the hilt (as they were bound to do, if they wanted to have any decent journalists left on the staff this time next year!).

Ricks hasn't, it seems, been completely with the program on the war. But he's surely not alone in that amongst defence journos.

So, let's open a Tom Ricks file, and see what turns up...

  1. The piece says that
    The Pentagon’s letter of complaint to Post executive editor Leonard Downie had language charging that Ricks casts his net as widely as possible and e-mails many people.
    Wow! I'm no expert, but that sounds remarkably like - well, journalism...


Tom Ricks is, I see, strangely absent from any piece Google News is spidering right now: thomas ricks pulls up December 17 reprints of a WaPo piece - co-authored with pin-up of the blog, Dana Priest - on the CIA and Saddam's grilling.

'Tis the season, I suppose.

A flavour of Ricks' reputation lower down the military food chain from a 1997 review in Parameters by one Lieutenant Colonel Ralph Peters of his book Making The Corps, described thus:
Tom Ricks, the Wall Street Journal's splendid defense reporter, has written the best non-fiction account of basic training you will ever read.

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