A Bittersweet Farewell to a TWI Icon, Spencer Ackerman

June 23, 2010 | Last updated: July 31, 2020

It is with a mix of emotions that I announce the departure of The Washington Independent’s national security reporter — and in many ways the cornerstone of the site — Spencer Ackerman. Spencer joined TWI when it was still just an idea, and he’s as responsible as anyone for turning that idea into a very successful reality. He set the standard for national security reporting in his time here, and he was a visionary in harnessing the power of blogging to break news and drive policy debates — something many of us now take for granted.

Spencer’s reporting has taken him from the battlefields of Afghanistan to the courtrooms of Guantanamo Bay to the unlikely intersection of the Senate and “South Park.” Every step of the way, he’s risen above the noise of the echo chamber to find the stories that truly matter, and he’s done so with as strong an ethical conviction as anyone I’ve ever met.

But when opportunity knocks, Spencer answers — and now a great opportunity has come along. Spencer will be moving over to Wired magazine, where I urge everyone to continue reading his work at the mighty Danger Room blog.

It’s been one of the great privileges of my career to edit Spencer’s work and watch his stories come together. I’ve learned from him every day here, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for him.