Wednesday, June 23, 2010

What to do about General Stanley McChrystal?

By now you should have already read the Rolling Stones profile on General Stanley McChrystal.  It is every bit as bad as imagined. What should be noted is what Will Jacobson at Legal Insurrection points out; McChrystal is not directly quoted making any of the damning remarks. Most importantly, McChrystal is not directly quoted making the Obama remark.
Legal Insurrection [Will’s emphasis]: According to sources familiar with the meeting, McChrystal thought Obama looked "uncomfortable and intimidated" by the roomful of military brass.
Their first one-on-one meeting took place in the Oval Office four months later, after McChrystal got the Afghanistan job, and it didn't go much better.
"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."
Even though McChrystal is not directly quoted, he should not be let off the hook. The remarks in the article undermine the president and the war. By allowing Rolling Stone such access and allowing his staff to feel free to publicly voice such remarks calls McChrystal’s judgment and command skills into serious question.

So what should Obama do about McChrystal? McChrystal has offered his resignation; if I were Obama I accept it immediately. This incident comes at the worst time. Because of the spill in the gulf, people are starting for the first time to question the competence of this president and his administration. The remarks about Obama and members of the administration feed into the dysfunctional and incompetent narrative. Also letting McChrystal stay after this incident feeds into the stereotype that Democrats are weak when it comes to the military.

Politically speaking, changing generals now could allow Obama to make changes with Afghanistan without looking like he changed his mind. McChrystal’s surge isn’t working yet and the deadline Obama set for withdrawal was always a mistake. By appointing a new general Obama could get a new strategy, remove the foolish deadline and use the new general as an excuse for the changes.

Via: UK Telegraph


billd said...

ref: your last paragraph - in my opinion, the best analysis/suggested-response i've encountered(!)

my reaction to this administration and the presidency of BO is migrating from disagreement to disapproval towards contempt; but, all your points are valid and put the nation's interest first.

to put into play a response scenario such as you outlined would require the admin to be (a)honorable, (b)coherent, (c)savvy

haven't yet seen BO marshal all three at the same time...

Chris said...

Obama picked these people but he will place the blame on someone else. When will Obama and the Democratic party take responsibility?

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