- By Thomas E. RicksThomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military for the Washington Post from 2000 through 2008. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I don’t know what to make of these accusations. Part of me wishes that all this journalistic energy had been directed instead to ferret out abuses by politicians who allocate government resources to campaign donors rather than to the neediest among us, but that’s not a real answer. The critics have raised serious questions that deserve better answers: we need to hold school-builders accountable as well as fat cats.
This reads to me like, "Hey, quit picking on my friends, especially one who blurbed my book, go pick on my enemies." I am amazed that Kristof could write such a thing after reading the Krakauer article.
He worries that scandals such as this will make people cynical. So it would be better to let the scam go on? I actually think someone who uses little Afghan children to live large is morally worse than an investment banker who never pretended to be doing good while living well.
Another point for Kristof to ponder: Kalsoom Lakhani wrote, "We should also use this opportunity to look inwards at ourselves, at our ability to get carried away by a charismatic personality and digestible narrative, in which Mortenson was the John Smith in the Pakistani version of Pocahontas."