Rogue Gen. McChrystal Under Fire for Trash-Talking Obama Admin. in Rolling Stone

June 22, 2010

(ChattahBox)—Much like the insane Colonel Walter E. Kurtz, memorably played by Marlon Brando in the film “Apocalypse Now,” General Stanley McChrystal has gone rogue, as the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan. But instead of retreating to the jungle and uttering, “The horror… the horror…,” McChrystal has taken to Rolling Stone magazine with his mouthy undisciplined staff, described as “outright maniacs” to talk trash about President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, including senior aides Special Envoy Richard Holbrooke, U.S. ambassador Karl Eikenberry and National Security Adviser James Jones. The Commander-in-Chief was not amused by Gen. McChrystal’s shocking insubordination and disdain for the chain of command. And President Obama promptly summoned the so-called “Jedi” commander to the White House for a face-to-face meeting. McChrystal, perhaps realizing he has gone too far this time, issued a statement after the Rolling Stone piece, due out on Friday, was leaked to the press, apologizing for his “poor judgment” that fell short of his self-professed “principles of personal honor and professional integrity.”

This is not the first time Gen. McChrystal has trashed talked to the press about the Obama administration. Just last fall, Obama summoned him to a meeting on Air Force One for a dress down for McChrystal’s public comments criticizing Biden. And before Obama made his decision on the surge effort in Afghanistan, McChrystal infuriated Obama, when he leaked his own policy review, concluding “mission failure” unless Obama committed 40,000 troops.

As pointed out by Michael Hastings Rolling Stone Piece, entitled “The Runaway General,” during his role this past year as the top commander, he has managed to piss just about everyone off.

Many of the disparaging comments about senior staff in the piece were made by anonymous McChrystal aides, but McChrystal himself, disparaged Eikenberry and Biden.

On Biden: “Now, flipping through printout cards of his speech in Paris, McChrystal wonders aloud what Biden question he might get today, and how he should respond. “I never know what’s going to pop out until I’m up there, that’s the problem,” he says.

“Then, unable to help themselves, he and his staff imagine the general dismissing the vice president with a good one-liner.” “Are you asking about Vice President Biden?” McChrystal says with a laugh. “Who’s that?” “Biden?” suggests a top adviser. “Did you say: Bite Me?”‘

Regarding Eikenberry, McChrystal said he felt “betrayed” and accused the ambassador of covering his own ass. ‘”Here’s one that covers his flank for the history books,” McChrystal told Rolling Stone. ‘ “Now, if we fail, they can say ‘I told you so.”‘

McChrystal’s aides who refer to themselves as Team America, in reference to a South Park episode, dissed Jim Jones as a “clown” who remains “stuck in 1985.”

And Team America attacked President Obama as clueless about the Afghanistan war, while describing the first meeting between McChrystal and Obama a year ago: “It was a 10-minute photo op,” says an adviser to McChrystal. “Obama clearly didn’t know anything about him, who he was. Here’s the guy who’s going to run his fucking war, but he didn’t seem very engaged. The Boss was pretty disappointed.”’

The Rolling Stone piece is based on the reporter’s narrative, that McChrystal and his team of aides who have developed a cult-like devotion to their “Jedi” commander, believe the White House is filled with “wimps.”

Will McChrystal hand over his resignation to President Obama? Will he be relieved of his command? These questions will be dominating the media coverage for the days and weeks ahead.

(Update: Rolling Stone finally posted the piece on its website.


2 Responses to “Rogue Gen. McChrystal Under Fire for Trash-Talking Obama Admin. in Rolling Stone”

  1. Nikos Retsos on June 22nd, 2010 11:00 am

    Actually, the view of General McChrystal and his sub-commanders just express their disgust of political bureaucrats trying to run the war details from Washington rooms -rather than allow those in the first line of the Afghan war to decide how to win it! General McChrystal may have broken the military hierarchy protocol “thou shall not badmouth your boss,” but he deserves credit for reducing the wanton killing of Afghan civilians by U.S. air-strikes that have fueled the Taliban insurgency. He doesn’t deserve the lynching that
    he is getting in the media.

    With the war casualties of the occupying forces in Afghanistan going up despite the U.S. surge, and with the Taliban becoming more effective as the war drags on, Obama’s subordinates see the U.S. defeat on the wall and prepare for the blame game of “who lost the war in Afghanistan” era ahead. And, no doubt, all of them will try to strike deals with publishers and make millions in their Afghanistan books. Therefore, now is the time for all of them to prepare the scripts so they can shine in the aftermath – rather than being the ones portrayed as the buffoons who lost the war. There are always two losers in every war: a) The Generals in the field, and b) The Politicians at the top who pull the strings of the Generals. And now that the U.S. defeat in Afghanistan is taking shape, the parties in both groups have started the blame game for the soul of the American public opinion, and for their book sales bonanza. Wars make many people rich, and it is not only Haliburton contractors.

    I agree with the opinion expressed by a McChrystal aide that National Security Adviser General Jones “is a clown.” It is easy for Jones and the Washington politicians to try to get credit for any success in the Afghan war from their posh offices in the capital, at the expense of the people in the first line of fire in Afghanistan. There is no doubt in my opinion that Obama’s staff is trying to micromanage the war from 13.000 miles away, and that attitude is certainly getting under the skin of the commanders in the field. And as the defeat of the U.S. in Afghanistan is getting closer, the dogfight among the principals of “who is to blame for losing the war” has blown a leak and is coming to surface – very much like the BP oil leak spill in the gulf. Nikos Retsos, retired professor

  2. Stanley McChrystal on June 23rd, 2010 4:48 am

    If you take the action of telling your personal opinions in public,then expect the consequences. I respect him for taking it to the public , but the Administrations serves the right to make him clarify what he is saying.
    President Obama’s top general in Afghanistan, Stanley McChrystal, is meeting with the president face to face after he made numerous remarks against the President, Vice President, and many others. To put it briefly the Rolling Stone published a piece from an interview where McChrystal was cited giving negative comments on his feelings towards the administration. He will not have the ability to purchase his way out of the trouble he’s going to be in, even with an installment loan. Even with his freedom of speech, I am certain that McChrystal will face some very severe punishments for choosing to express what he did. Well if our rights are being taken from us in simple forms like speech, what’s next?

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