The POTUS doesn’t like being called “unprepared” especially following the Gulf Oil spill. Look for The General to retire abruptly. My guess, resignation on Friday night.
The top U.S. general in Afghanistan apologized on Monday for comments by his aides insulting some of President Barack Obama’s closest advisers in an article to be published on Friday in Rolling Stone magazine.
The article also quotes an aide describing the commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Stanley McChrystal’s “disappointment” with his initial one-on-one meeting with Obama last year.
“I extend my sincerest apology for this profile. It was a mistake reflecting poor judgment and should never have happened,” McChrystal said in a statement.
“Throughout my career, I have lived by the principles of personal honor and professional integrity. What is reflected in this article falls far short of that standard,” he said.
“I have enormous respect and admiration for President Obama and his national security team, and for the civilian leaders and troops fighting this war and I remain committed to ensuring its successful outcome.”
The Rolling Stone article, which quoted several McChrystal aides anonymously, portrays a split between the U.S. military and Obama’s advisers at an extremely sensitive moment for the Pentagon, which is fending off criticism of its strategy to turn around the nearly nine-year-old Afghan war.
It quotes a member of McChrystal’s team making jokes about Vice President Joe Biden, who was seen as critical of the general’s efforts to escalate the conflict and who had favored a more limited counter-terrorism approach.
“Biden?” the aide was quoted as saying. “Did you say: Bite me?”
Another aide called White House National Security Adviser Jim Jones, a retired four star general, a “clown” who was “stuck in 1985.”
It quoted an adviser to McChrystal dismissing an early meeting with Obama as a “10-minute photo op.”
“Obama clearly didn’t know anything about him, who he was. The boss was pretty disappointed,” the adviser told the magazine.
McChrystal, a workaholic said to sleep just four hours a day, was brought into Afghanistan a year ago after his predecessor was pushed out.
The article portrays his teams as disapproving of the Obama administration, with the exception of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who backed McCrystal’s request for additional troops in Afghanistan.
Some of the strongest criticism was reserved for Richard Holbrooke, Obama’s special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan.
“The boss says he’s like a wounded animal,” a member of the general’s team is quoted as saying. “Holbrooke keeps hearing rumors that he’s going to get fired, so that makes him dangerous.”
McChrystal was quoted as saying he felt “betrayed” by the leak of a classified cable from U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry last year. The cable raised doubts about sending more troops to shore up an Afghan government already lacking in credibility.
“I like Karl, I’ve known him for years, but they’d never said anything like that to us before,” McChrystal was quoted as saying in the article.
“Here’s one that covers his flank for the history books. Now if we fail, they can say, ‘I told you so.'”
What the Heck Was McChrystal Thinking?
What in the heck was Gen. Stanley McChrystal thinking? I mean, I know what he was thinking: he was tired of being the victim of what he believes is a concerted effort on behalf of Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry and others to undermine everything he was given 18 months to do. He was tired of being perceived in the press as a neoconservative killer, Dick Cheney’s hired assassin, or disloyal to President Obama and his staff. He was angry at being blamed for leaking the draft of his report to the President to Bob Woodward. (He did NOT leak the document). He was miffed that a large number of mid-ranking soldiers and battalion commanders and enlisted guys didn’t support his strategy.What I don’t know is which of McChrystal’s aides thought it would be a good idea to let his senior staff speak on background to Rolling Stone (!) of all publications, venting McChrystal’s frustrations and their own.Because if there was ONE thing McChrystal could do to reduce trust between himself and the National Security Council leading up to December’s planned policy review, it was to allow a staffer to mock Joe Biden and call the national security adviser a “clown” … and to put words in McChrystal’s own mouth that denigrate Eikenberry.
- ‘The Runaway General’: General McChrystal Faces BLOWBACK From …
- General McChrystal Recalled (Updated) (SWJ Blog)
- Moonbattery: “General McChrystal Speaks Truth to Power”