Blum worked in a computer-related position at the United States Department of State in the mid-1960s.
At first an anti-communist with dreams of becoming a foreign service officer, he became disillusioned by the Vietnam War.
Blum resided in Washington, DC.
For a short period in early 2006, Blum became the topic of a widespread media topic when Osama bin Laden issued a public statement in which he quoted Blum and recommended that all Americans read Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower.
An article entitled, “Come Out of the White House With Your Hands Up”, Blum wrote, in May 22, 2006, “Since the bin Laden recommendation, 19 January, I have not been offered a single speaking engagement on any campus. This despite January–May normally being the most active period for me and other campus speakers.”
William Blum passed away at 85 years old.