It’s finally happened. I got flamed by Code Pink, the fringe anti-war group famous for … well, wearing pink and being annoying. Toby Blome from Code Pink’s San Francisco operations wrote to scold me for my recent Wired article “Hidden History: America’s Secret Drone War in Africa,” in which I detailed drone operations over Somalia since 2007.
I concluded the article by noting the lack of popular backlash in Somalia against the robot strikes. Blome found that reported fact unacceptable. He wrote:
Is this the sign of a tired reporter, who worked so hard on this story, and failed to think about the deeper meaning of the words you decided to close with? With drone war so secretive as it is, and few Americans having any idea of the violence that we propagate with these deadly weapons, and the enemies that are created, ten-fold, by their use, I would have hoped that you could have said something more thought provoking and conscientious. … One day this country will reap the whirlwind of the terror that we propagate with drone weapons. I’m hoping that in the future you think more deeply and write more responsibly, so America is awakened before it is too late.
As a reporter on the military beat, you can’t please everyone — not that pleasing anyone is the point. The liberals think you’re a fascist. The conservatives think you’re a hippy. War advocates think you’re a pacifist. Anti-war types like Code Pink think you’re a warmonger.
I’d welcome Blome to take up reporting himself, if he thinks he can do a better job.