I don’t think you can call yourself a national security reporter unless you’re obsessively refreshing Small Wars Journal. What I love about Small Wars Journal is that I basically get what sources of mine are thinking in real time—I get great ideas for stories. Similarly, you’ve got to read Danger Room at Wired. One of the greatest things Noah Shachtman has done is, for an extremely tech-interested audience, write again and again and again about the limits of technology and warfare and national security. And he does things like run Awesomely Bad Military Patches, which is a wonderful feature. He doesn’t lose his sense of joie de vivre when covering a subject that’s basically about killing people, as much as we can sometimes get around that. DoDBuzz, the guys who contribute to that on military.com. For intelligence, Jeff Stein at CQ, Mark Mazetti at the Times, Dana Priest and Walter Pincus at The Washington Post, anything that Barton Gellman writes. And at ProPublica, anything that Dafna Linzner writes. I apologize to everyone I’ve missed, because I read your stuff voraciously.

For the second part of this interview, click here.

Greg Marx is a CJR staff writer. Follow him on Twitter @gregamarx.