Unless you are involved with the kernel, I would suggest that you would hold your judgment.
Linus does not blow up without good reason. I challenge anyone to find example where Linus starts to really attack people when they are not doing something clearly stupid, that would result for not accepting patches if not solved (like breaking userspace and refusing to admit that it's error to do so). https://lkml.org/lkml/2013/7/16/565 I have been reading and contributing to the kernel and I think Linus uses cursing people as very effective way to emphasize the urgency and his seriousness of how badly some maintainer is fucking things up (hurting feelings really helps to save time when people don't get the message). He makes misjudgments and there are sometimes miscommunication, but he acknowledges them openly.
One thing that separates Linux kernel development from other software projects I have worked with is that there are no grudges. When there is serious disagreement with Linus, there is one huge flame and the issue is settled in one way or another. After that he continues with that person just like before. There are some really difficult persons to work with, like glibc maintainer Ulrich Drepper and I would say that Richard Stallman is also much harder to work with than Linus.
I don't advocate cursing people as general way to handle things, but I think that Linus has personality that makes it work. The problem is that if people just think there is some general lesson to be learned from his behavior that can be applied to others.
I think he makes very good point at justifying himself:
"I really fundamentally believe that being honest and open about your emotions about core/process is good. And because it's damn hard to read people over email, I think you need to be *more* honest and *more* open over email. I'm generally nicer in person. Not always."