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Angry Obama Summons McChrystal Home

From a fuming New York Times:

McChrystal Is Summoned to Washington Over Remarks

By DEXTER FILKINS

June 22, 2010

KABUL, Afghanistan — An angry President Obama summoned his top commander in Afghanistan to Washington on Tuesday after a magazine article portrayed the general and his staff as openly contemptuous of some senior members of the Obama administration.

An administration official said the commander, Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, would meet with President Obama and Vice President Biden at the White House on Wednesday “to explain to the Pentagon and the commander in chief his quotes in the piece,” which appears in the July 8-22 edition of Rolling Stone…

The article shows General McChrystal or his aides talking in sharply derisive terms about Mr. Biden; Ambassador Karl Eikenberry; Richard C. Holbrooke, the special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan; and an unnamed minister in the French government. One of General McChrystal’s aides is quoted as referring to the national security adviser, James L. Jones, as a “clown.”

A senior administration official said Mr. Obama was furious about the article, particularly with the suggestion that he was uninterested and unprepared to discuss the Afghanistan war after he took office.

Sometimes the truth hurts.

The magazine article, entitled “The Runaway General,” quotes aides of General McChrystal saying the general was “pretty disappointed” by an Oval Office meeting with Mr. Obama, and that he found the president “uncomfortable and intimidated” during a Pentagon meeting with General McChrystal and several other generals.

The article does not mention any serious policy differences with Mr. Obama, who chose General McChrystal to take charge of a major escalation of American troops and materiel, in hopes of reversing the deteriorating situation here.

Somehow we suspect this is a misrepresentation, since General McChrystal at the very least wanted twice as many troops for the Afghan surge than Mr. Obama eventually promised to provide.

Still, the article seems destined to raise questions about General McChrystal’s judgment, and to spark debate over the wisdom of Mr. Obama’s strategy, at a time when violence in Afghanistan is rising sharply and when several central planks of the strategy appear to be stalled…

Sorry, but from what we have seen so far, the article seems to raise more questions about Mr. Obama’s judgment than General McChrystal’s.

The author of the article — Michael Hastings, a freelance journalist — appears to have been granted intimate access to General McChrystal’s inner circle. Most of the comments appear to have been uttered during unguarded moments, in places like bars and restaurants where the general and his aides gathered to unwind

As the adages goes, in vino veritas. (In wine there is truth.)

The article describes a conversation in which General McChrystal and an aide talk about Mr. Biden. Mr. Biden is known to have opposed the decision to escalate the war, preferring instead a slimmed-down plan focused on containing terrorism.

“Are you asking about Vice President Biden?” General McChrystal jokes.

“Biden?” suggests a top adviser. “Did you say ‘Bite me?’ ”

Sounds like a very sensible response to us.

The magazine article also describes a meeting in which a soldier vents his frustration over General McChrystal’s tightening of the rules governing the use of air strikes against suspected insurgents. In the article, the soldier, Pfc. Jared Pautsch, is quoted telling General McChrystal that he is endangering soldiers’ lives by forcing them to be too restrained.

The soldiers know where these suicidal rules of engagement are coming from, even the The Times pretends not to. Indeed, many of the earlier media reports about the Rolling Stone article highlighted the claim that McChrystal could not sell his troops on his own policy.

But, in fact, General McChrystal is quite popular with the soldiers on the ground over there. They know that these new rules of engagement aren’t coming from General McChrystal, but the ‘Community Organizer In Chief.’

By the way, notice how The Times avoids any mention of what is surely the most damning line from the Rolling Stone piece, if true:

The article claims McChrystal has seized control of the war "by never taking his eye off the real enemy: The wimps in the White House."

Why would they leave that out?

Are they afraid of making their boss look bad?

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

24 Responses to “Angry Obama Summons McChrystal Home”

  1. wardmama4

    This whole Rolling Stone ‘article’ is a lie – and I can prove it:

    the soldier, Pfc. Jared Pautsch, is quoted telling General McChrystal

    There is no why, no how, no place that a PFC would tell a 4 Star General a damn thing.

    McChrystal must be removed for Obama to destroy OEF and thus need to bring our troops home 1) due to the horrible ‘crisis’ that GWB started and 2) just in time for the 2012 elections for even a modicum of a chance for him to be re-elected (but he fails to realize that the anti-war mongers are just the same 1,000 people at each and every anti-war demonstration since 2000 – and a 1,000 people is nothing in the ACORN Vote Early, Vote Often voter fraud election winning scam).

    • proreason

      You could be right wm.

      One thing for sure, the report was only released because the criminals wanted it to be released.

      But I suspect that the general wants out of the mess as well. Trying to win a war with this cabal running the show simply isn’t possible. Now the general knows it.

      Hopefully, he will resign, kick the Moron in the groin, and will tell the unfiltered truth about the lies of the marxist criminals.

    • tranquil.night

      The running narrative the Left has against Afghanistan right now is that it’s a deficit buster. Ugh.

      The military also serves as the direct challenge to any Civilian Defense Force or Obama Secret Police. They’ve done their best to infect it with the Liberal cancer, but war will always just be too real for it to take root beyond the political scene.

      Yes, McChrystal shall be getting the Tony Hayward treatment. If you ask me, they’re just purging anyone who gives them the political opportunity – friend, ally, or foe. Anything to take the pressure off the manchild; it’s clear he can’t take it. These hitpieces are following the same strategy as the oil spill: control the language, control the argument.

      I doubt most of these idiots calling for him to be fired have even read the article yet. But the more soundbites for the hourly news update, the quicker you manipulate populist opinion, the bigger hill the truth has to climb. By then the news cycle changes and narrative becomes repeated fact.

    • AcornsRNutz

      Although you are generally right, this does happen from time to time. A dirtbag non-rate who is ticked off will stand up during one of these dog and pony show visits from brass and say some damn fool thing, which is immediately scooped up by any MSM around. I personally saw a Brigadier General asked by a Marine Lcpl when he was going to get the bipod on his SAW fixed. It is a commander’s nightmare, but it is blood in the water to the jerk off imbeds. Still, thats the only way something like that could likely happen, and that context ought to be part of the story. Clearly these responsbile truth seekers just made a little mistake.

      And the PFC was right.

    • oldswimcoach

      The PFC could have been a “plant” to address an agenda that others in leadership positions can’t discuss or address with the political leadership. Using a plant has been done before, and it’s a common tactic of the left, so even if it was legit in a Q/A session, the administration would likely see a boogie-man in the question.

      The comments on Eikenberry are spot on. When he was in command, he set the U.S. up for failure in a number of political, military and cultural ways. Making him the Ambassador has likely expanded/compounded the problems, but I have not been there for a few years.

      Don’t know any of the other players mentioned, but we (U.S. political leadership) have done our absolute best to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in Afghanistan!

    • tranquil.night

      I have little doubt that question for McChrystal was a plant.

      Just like Eikenberry was probably chosen as Ambassador because there was bad blood among them.

      Along those lines, it’s entirely likely that McChrystal was chosen by Obama specifically because he’s a brash warrior general, not a PC corporate one. Remember, the entire 2009 narrative was that Obama was apparently some hugely compromising bipartisan because he largely pursued Bush’s war plan and committed to 30,000 more troops. We’re reminded of this early and often whenever he’s criticized about his wartime leadership.

      Anyway, it was only a matter of time before the cracks of incompatability between the man who talks of kicking ass and the man who actually does so became apparent. When this time came, Obama was satisfied that they were easily going to be able to paint McChrystal as the hated ultra-macho fraternalist American military killing machine. Haven’t you seen Avatar?

      It’s all a very wearisome strategy, none of it having to do with actually winning the war and keeping Americans safe.

    • canary

      It’s no big deal for a general to speak to a private.
      The article said McChrystal was observed returning to a platoon he went with after a Corporal (1 rank above a PFC) in the platoon he met, was killed in an Afganistan house, The Platoon among others were not happy with the ROE. I don’t hear McChrystal denying it.

      Also, the photo op aboard AF1 with Obama is old news already posted on Sweetness & Light. That was Obama’s infamous trip with Oprah Winfrey & Michelle, etc. to win the Olympics for Chicago. Obama flew AF1 and met with General McChrystal so it would look like it was official business. Obama got a little upset at McChrystal at the time for opening his mouth on that subject
      and also old news about Obama not wanting to give him troops.
      Also, the ROE where are soldiers can’t protect themselves was covered at the Marja offense, to include footage and soldiers of Private ranking complaining.

  2. proreason

    McChrystal is being roundly criticized in the conservative blogosphere. You know….not following the established protocol, blah blah blah.

    My question is, will it ever be ok for sane Americans to take the gloves off and stand up for their country?

    The Moron breaks every law, ignores the Constitution, runs roughshod over everyone he disagrees with, sends men into battle with their hands tied behind their back, crams the most outrageous policies down our throats….and every time somebody says “enough is enough”, THAT person gets slapped down.

    Isn’t it obvious what the criminals are doing? Wardmama is certainly right that the story was at least instigated by the cabal. Everything they do stops just short of executing people in public….but that doesn’t make their actions any less criminal….just less violent.

    Do they have to murder 50 million people for the dainty protectors of our freedoms to decide to break a nail?

    The general obviously has a big mouth. In normal circumstances, Jon Kyl shouldn’t have said what he said. Same for Joe Barton.

    But my god, when is enough enough?

    Apparently, not until we are living in grass shacks and defending ourselves with sticks.

    • proreason

      Well, finally somebody did stand up.

      A judge has blocked the criminal and illegal 6 months moritorium on offshore drilling.

      http://www.breitbart.com/artic....._article=1

      Is this the only judge in the country with a pair?

      God bless him.

    • Gil

      My question is, will it ever be ok for sane Americans to take the gloves off and stand up for their country?

      I believe they will be brought to it, unwillingly, but definitely.

    • wardmama4

      This is my fear – where are the people in America who can/will fight back? Certainly not every single judge, lawyer and/or politician is a flaming brain dead liberal – somewhere, someone has to have the guts/backbone to stand up and say not just NO but HELL NO.

      And read the story – where the heck did the NYTs come up with this drivel? McChrystal sounds like he should be an Obamabot first class – yet, yet he is portrayed here as a turncoat?!?

      Big Auto, Big Banks, Big Insurance, Big Oil and now Big Military – America is screwed if someone does not stand up and destroy this dictator (Obama, in case any liberal moron out there has a problem with who I am talking about) in the making – now rather than later.

      Read the story – I still stand by my comment on the PFC – the only plant anywhere appears to be the ‘freelance journalist’ who wouldn’t know the truth if it b*$@# slapped him.

    • tranquil.night

      You said it best again Pro.

      “Worse yet, these and other anecdotes from his inner circle appear to show that McChrystal either tolerates or actively encourages disrespect for the civilian leadership that runs the US military.”

      I was nearly rendered speechless by Morrissey’s commentary.

      Civilian leadership? What civilians and what leadership, Ed? These are leftist anti-military zealots that’ve intentionally used both of these wars politically to amass massive amounts of power; everything they screamed bloody murder that Bush was doing. Except they’ve done it instead by actively pursuing defeat in those wars.

      It’s scary to hear Conservatives openly question why we were there to begin with now. I mean, certainly if Obama isn’t going to do the job right then I agree that they should just come home, but to hear basically that the whole thing was pointless – it doesn’t leaving me feel too tranquil.

      President Kickass and his political machine know what butt’s they want to kick because they’re already doing it: ours. His chief opposition. This became the instant lead story for a reason. They want to stir the pot on our side. They’re worming for fractures in the Independent/Libertarian wing of the coalition. Anything to divide and topple our momentum. Anything to keep the focus off the destruction of our laws and economy. Anything to keep him alive in November.

    • proreason

      Strange coincidence tn.

      Just before I wrote that post, I had read Morrisey’s comments that you reference, after having read VDH and several others who were snapping heels exactly as the administration had planned for the McChrystal playlette.

      I can just hear the criminals in their planning sessions “you know we can throw the wingnuts off message for a week if we can just push McChrystal over the edge and get him to criticize Obama. You know they are like Pavlov’s dogs when it comes to the Commander in Chief, even if ours is an incompetant Moron”.

      Actually, I made the last 7 words up.

    • tranquil.night

      Exactly, and this “Generals should never publicly criticize their Chief Commander” article line is doing nothing but feed the Left’s intended narrative. Like with Wilson and Barton, these poorly timed and poorly expressed statements of truth are rather in fact a symptom of the REAL problem: a naive, idealistic dictator and his regime is causing harm to our national interests through intentional incompetence, then searching for the best fall guy that they can make out to be Conservative. It’s a continual disaster that really makes everything else pale in comparison, which is in and of itself alarming.

    • canary

      Salazar is responsible for skipping the federal regulations, is now bragging they will appeal the decision and win. There is no rationality to shutting down rigs that are working fine. Probably more danger in moving them.
      Soros wants the rigs to move to fill his own pockets.

  3. BannedbytheTaliban

    I’m sure Obama just wanted to pin that 5th star on in-person.

  4. SweetiePie24

    WHOA!
    with a name like sweetness and light, the last thing I expected to see on this site was a bunch of angry reigh-winged republikkkans…

    • proreason

      Congratulations.

      You managed to screech racist in your very first sentence.

      You know what that means, don’t you?

      Anybody that obsessed with racism is extremely guilty about something.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Let us examine your initial statement under the light, shall we?

      1) What did you “expect to see”?

      2) angry. What is it, do you suppose, that makes us angry?

      3)reigh(sic)-winged republicans.

      Aside from the extremely poor spelling, if by “reigh-winged” you mean conservative, then I guess you cracked the code on that. Thank you, Captain Obvious. No shame in being conservative as just look at where the spending, the failure to adhere to the law, the ignoring of threats of all kinds has gotten us. And please, we’ve heard all the Bush-bashing. It’s time for the boy to “own it” wouldn’t you say?

      4)repulikkkans.

      Unfortunately, your kkk reference is lost here. Generally, we believe that a person should be judged, not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. That all persons in this nation have an obligation to be moral, just and fair.

      But then, your definition for those terms is relative at best, and pathetic at worst.

      I’ve never been a member of the kkk, don’t know anyone in the kkk and don’t believe in their “charter”. I think what they do and say is as wrong as can be.

      I do however, believe in the Constitution of the United States, the system of laws that are decided upon and yes, I have been on the wrong side of the law and didn’t like my punishment but accepted it. This is because I accept responsibility for my actions. Do you?

      We currently have a president who has no character. Talks a good talk but all one needs to do to get a clear picture is note his actions.

      It’s a bloody shame that you assume we’re all racists. But, you have thus spake volumes about your own nature in just one simple sentence. Thank you.

      You have done far greater damage to yourself that any one of us could ever do.

      Have a nice day.

    • fallingpianos

      Sweetie,

      No one in the Republican party is a member of the Ku Klux Klan. However, I do believe one of your own, Robert Byrd, Demokkkrat, was at one time.

    • wardmama4

      Actually all – I think (Nothing at All) Sweet was attempting to go for the trifecta of foaming at the mouth moonbat insults and meant reich (not right).

      The punchline is not funny when you screw up the joke. The insult is meaningless when you screw it up from the git-go.

      Hmmm, I wonder exactly what gutter surfing, bottom feeding website is posting such talking points today for their seminar callers/bloggers to go forth and spew. (Hint: use control + C – that way you can copy it perfectly and not make mistakes!!!!)

      My not quite lilly white, hard working, tax paying, middle class, God fearing, gun toting (everywhere I legally can), educated, married (to a person of the opposite sex), 29 years of Army wife service, conservative soul – finds what you wrote – Insulting, immature, and completely off topic – go back to school in the fall – and this time listen and learn.

    • AcornsRNutz

      “and this time listen and learn”

      Thats the problem WM. This dingbat clearly did listen.

  5. If McCrystal has a problem with the administration, he should man-up and state it directly, then resign. Stop playing games.

  6. Mithrandir

    Time for the ‘ol lawyer hit-job/smear campaign:

    ~Is McChrystal’s judgment impaired?
    ~Is he really the right man for the job? Things have not improved since McChrystal …..
    ~Some say that McChrystal is not mentally sound.
    ~There have been whispers that McChrystal…..
    ~It is an open secret that McChrystal is not competent to…..
    ~Has the war worn down McChrystal’s judgment?
    ~McChrystal’s insubordination is lowering morale some reports indicate…
    ~Under McChrystal’s leadership, soldier’s death, suicide, IEDs have increased ???%…

    There is no doubt that McChrystal’s unflattering piece will NOT go unpunished, the magazine writers and television editors are already gearing up their hit jobs on him, once they get all their talking points in order.




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