June 23rd, 2010
07:42 AM ET

'Everyone makes mistakes': Some Afghans on the fallout over McChrystal's comments

Washington may be up in arms over Gen. Stanley McChrystal's comments to Rolling Stone magazine about the U.S. mission in Afghanistan and how some of his colleagues are handling it — but some in Afghanistan are asking what the fuss is all about?

McChrystal arrived in Afghanistan last summer as the top NATO commander — but if Washington is mad at the general, his friends in Afghanistan seem to be unafffected.

Many among the local population in Kabul say that McChrystal revamped the forgotten war, putting it on a different path and instilling a counter-insurgency strategy (COIN) in an attempt to regain the trust of the Afghan people.

He instilled a new hope, they argue, for those Afghans who actually backed the war effort, also angering the Taliban – which ramped up their PR — in the battle for hearts and minds.

President Hamid Karzai has vocally expressed his support for General McChrystal and called him the "best" commander for the war in Afghanistan, according to his spokesman Waheed Omar. He added that McChrystal is a man of great integrity who understands the Afghan people and their culture and that Karzai hopes president Barack Obama will not replace the commanding general with someone else.

McChrystal and Karzai have built a strong relationship in the year he has been in Afghanistan, flying to districts and provinces in order to gain the support of villagers while showing a united front.

He hasn't just been sitting around NATO headquarters barking orders say local officials — he's been going out in the field, meeting with soldiers and most importantly meeting with Afghans.

Gen. Mohammad Zahir Azimi, the spokesman for the Afghan defense ministry, explained that McChrystal's knowledge of Afghanistan stems from his discussions with Afghans.

He stated that McChrystal is a frequent attendee at village council meetings — known as "shuras" — throughout the country, where he listens to their problems, concerns and needs.

But McChrystal's tactical directive that restricts NATO forces on the ground from attacking enemy forces without having proof that they are militants has angered many soldiers.  Many feel that their own lives are put in greater danger because of it.  While for Afghans, it means less of a chance of civilian casualties — a sore issue that has caused friction in the Afghan — NATO relationship. 

"For Afghans it was very important that after a civilian was killed he would apologize on behalf of his people and his military," said Abdul Ghani, a 65-year-old businessman who was a former government official during the Taliban regime from 1996 through 2001.

"This showed that he was supporting the locals and he was trying to avoid a long-term fight and avoid civilians being killed."

Speaking through his salt and pepper beard, Ghani credits NATO's involvement, and particularly McChrystal, for bringing security and allowing him to run his business and make a living.

"He made a mistake and he used poor judgment in criticizing U.S. officials," Ghani said "but it is normal and everyone makes mistakes."

But Ghani's optimism about McChrystal stems mostly from his pessimism at past international leaders. He believes McChrystal has been the best one so far.

"We are satisfied with Mr. McChrystal and we hope he will not repeat the bitter experiences of the past," Ghani said.

The Ministry of Defense, which is being pushed by the U.S. and NATO to add more troops to their arsenal, is also standing behind McChrystal.

"Since the arrival of General McChrystal to Afghanistan many of our problems have been solved," ministry spokesman Azimi told CNN, "including problems with civilian casualties, unlawful detentions. He has also improved the coordination between Afghan and international forces on and off the battlefield."

By focusing on building infrastructure and civilian issues, Azimi adds, McChrystal has been able to win back some Afghan support.

But with the firestorm in the United States, the Afghan voices are being muffled again.

And even though his Afghan supporters and partners can forgive him, the question remains, can Washington?

— Journalist Matiullah Mati contributed to this report.

soundoff (193 Responses)
  1. JACKSON

    Gen. McChrystal, unfortunately, placed himself in a position where he couldn't win. But, the President, just for once, has to have a little thicker skin and think about the overall effect of dismissing the General would cause. Yes, there is a time and place to voice your opinion, and the General chose unwisely. But, the President could have given him a good 'dressing down' rather then dismissing him (politically, he gave the General the option to 'resign', but make no mistake, he was dismissed). Petreaus is a good replacement, but you can't replace the experiance, expertise and knowledge of the 'situation on the ground' that McChrystal brought to the table and the effect this has on our troops morale. Cooler, more rational heads should have prevailed, but in Washignton, politics rule and perception/image is the holy grail. Sad for us, and sad for the Afghans who placed their trust in the General.

    June 25, 2010 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  2. RetiredLE

    Or how about we eliminate you.

    June 24, 2010 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
  3. RetiredLE

    The irony here is that Obama and his cronies has done more to divide this country than Osama and his cronies could ever have hoped to......

    June 24, 2010 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  4. RetiredLE

    The real story is the fact that Gen. McChrystal simply pointed out to a reporter the fact that Obama is a disconnected and incompetent president. Every company has one clown who works for it who padded his resume, and talked his way into a job he wasn't qualified for. Eventually they always get caught by their own game. This is what is happening to Obama.

    June 24, 2010 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Ron

    McChrystal is a man of great integrity who understands the Afghan people and their culture should have understood the American people and their culture. You don't talk trash about the president in a magazine. 1st amendment does require a little common sense. In this case there was no common sense. I guess it is not required of a General.

    June 24, 2010 at 7:07 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Walter L. Strickland

    AMERICAN BLOOD HAS BEEN, FOR YEARS, SPILLED SERVING OTHER COUNTRIES. THIS GENERAL HAS HAD MANY YEARS MILITARY SERVICE. IT IS TOO BAD HE "LOST HIS COOL" AND HAS BEEN CANNED BY MR. OBAMA WHO IS ONLY A POLITICIAN INTERESTED IN SERVING ANYONE EXCEPT THE "LEGAL CITIZENS OF THIS NATION.

    June 24, 2010 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Hamed

    The real problem of this world is the existnece of Israel, this so called Jewish state must and should be destroyed once and for all. The stolen land of Palastenians called (Israel) should be detstroyed and give it back to the people who actually ownes it. Killing and destroying the Jewish people should be the responsiblity of all nation. Jews a plague that needs to be eliminated . Think about it deeply. Jews are the real cause of the world problem.

    June 24, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Larry Valecia, Calif.

    I think that Afghanistan will do the right thing this time!!! Because the United States is training them to take care of themselves... Not try to take over the Country like every one before!!!

    June 24, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  9. LOYA

    Afghans in Bazaars and shops know only one things. What brings in money. They are not concerened who in General No2 or 3......they have for centuries seen enough Generals lurking around for a while and leaving never to return...Starting with Alexander "Great", to McChrystal....Afghanistan is a haunted piece of land. Mighty Greeks, British Empire, Mughals, Soviet Super Power have failed to briddle it. Why spill American blood? Call our boys back from that thankless country.

    June 24, 2010 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  10. 7thseal

    I told you the truth, I said the general will go. The OIL will never stop! I tell you the truth, get out of Afghanistan. We have no RIGHT to be there. This is HOLY LAND! If our men and women still are there for 100 years, We'll never win. Stop letting our men and woman shed blood and die before their time! Stop wasting billions of dollars which is needed here.. America can save trillions in the long term.Other countries are being attacked too. Why are they leaving Afghanistan? There is a reason for this. That's for you to figure out. The Taliban does'nt want us! Bin Laden is dead my people. I tell you truth, take our military out of there. With the intelligence here, America and also the Nato allies, can protect and monitor the areas of the World. The President and General Petraesus are intelligent men in there positions, I tell you the truth, will come to the meeting of minds. This shall be done.

    June 24, 2010 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      The Oil will stop... The war will be won... We will get our troops out of both Iraq and Afghanistan!!! It will be up to them what happens after that not ours...

      June 24, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Alex

    Hey Stan... remember Dan Tillman??? Apparently not as you still have the nerve to talk in public. Best thing for you, some friendly fire. You disrespecting POS. I am mainly upset that you will get a pension...You had better thank the tax payers for that!

    June 24, 2010 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
  12. Serge

    General McChrystal seems to be a very "bright" person. He finally has recognized that this war like any other war against terrorism is unwinnable in a classic war-manner. As he couldn't possibly speak it out loud he started insulting his commander in chief and "entourage"... just to make sure that he would not have any other choice but quitting. Yes this General is nothing but a quitter. The way he choose on how to quit is a shame and indeed proves not only his "poor judgement" but his complete lack of guts, honor and responsibilty...

    June 24, 2010 at 8:01 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      He has the right to his Opinion... You tell Your Boss what you feel... If you feel you can't follow the orders you quit!!! Not bad mouth Your boss so that know one else can carry out the order!!! Especially when you have others lives that can be lose because of your big mouth!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
      • Serge

        Larry, don't get ya.. you sure tell your boss your opinion.. but through a rolling stone article? Gimme a break!

        June 24, 2010 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Ruslan

    Please, Taliban, kill so many Americans as possible! Please!!!

    June 24, 2010 at 1:45 am | Report abuse |
  14. Jester

    I wonder if he said : Me and My Big mouth

    June 24, 2010 at 12:32 am | Report abuse |
  15. viacondios

    seraphimo...not sure I got your code name right. I agree with most of what you are saying – but this general did not disrespect anyone....especially the president. perhaps the president took it that way – just as you are. read carefully the article. then study the word respect for a bit and maybe even sleep on it. the only crime committed here was not done by McChrystal – not in a civilian court not in a military one. Personally, I'd give the General another star! He told the truth. Obama is and has been disengaged when it comes to this war. That's not disrespectful – that's the truth. Do you bow down when people's lives are at stake if the CIC is wrong...maybe you do – but he didn't and quite frankly, I applaud him. If you're worried that by him returning to his job – others will begin to be disrespectful to the president...get in line buddy – there are hundreds that have said far worse things about this president and now, quite frankly, I think this will have just the opposite effect in Afghanistan. Soldiers like McChrystal, the Afghans like him, the leaders like him – Taliban hates him...And now – first reports from Taliban – they are glad to see him go!!! Holy crap – wonder what that means...get with the program – if you were/are in the military – thank you...but get a grip – this General did not deserve to have to resign for the less than 25 words probably taken out of context about a CIC who is less popular today than any Pres in history!!!

    June 23, 2010 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      Anytime you say anything against your orders... You are bad mouthing the Person giving it to you!!! Any Boss would fire Their Employee if they did that!!! Are how else will you be able to have your orders to be done???

      June 24, 2010 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  16. viacondios

    What a shame that McChrysal has resigned. I hope he writes a tell-all book about just how ignorant the CIC really is. How embarrassing for this country that a man of McChrysal's background, integrity and sacrifice would be asked to resign his career/post by a man who has never stepped foot on a battle field – unless it's for a photo op. So what if he told the truth to some idiot Rollingstone Mag. Did we fire Obama when he called the Boston police "stupid" before he knew the real story about the professor dude who was questioned about trying to enter his own house. No – we didn't ask for Obama's resignation when he spoke without context or reason. We are this President and every other president's boss and I say it's time we ask for Obama to step down before this entire nation falls. Never in my life have I been afraid to live in my country – never have I worried what tomorrow would bring as I knew that hope would always await us. Now – the hope we should have is that we wake up and fire this man at the top, this commander in chief who is being laughed at around the world, this man whom many hundreds of thousands of other soldiers despise. I talked to an active soldier who just returned from Afghanistan recently. After 11 years in the military – he told me he wants out. He was in for life at one time. He was there to retire. Now he says he cannot serve under a man who hasn't a clue!! And, it's apparent that he's not the only one that feels that way as the rate of soldiers changing their minds about long term careers in the military is higher than it ever has been. Men and women no longer are signing up for "country" – they sign up because they can't get a job...sound familiar WWII vets? Wake up people...this is the tip of the iceberg. General McChyrstal should have been reprimanded in some way – but this president doesn't have the you know whats to even stand in the same arena as this guy. I wish you the best McChrystal. Write the book and tell the truth, nothing but the truth about how this president is not qualified to command anyone or anything...

    June 23, 2010 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  17. usnavyvet68

    Jimmy the Greek was correct. McChrystal was correct. Hopefully, when the 'lame duck' is gone, 'Crystal Clear' will be put in charge again.

    June 23, 2010 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • PopeJohnII

      Hmmm? Wonder why NO ONE in a position of leadership, including Obama's harshest critics, have come to McCrystal's defense or have critisized Obama's decision?
      USMC/RVNvet68

      June 24, 2010 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
  18. devee

    mccrystal should have been allowed to debate these issues with obammy on prime time tv,,,this man has enuff insight and knowledge to know what policy is about,obammy is nothing and needs to drag his butt back to the getto,,,foolish

    June 23, 2010 at 6:13 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Smith in Oregon

    The biggest mistake in the McChrystal fiasco was for President Obama to let the Pentagon pull a man from directing extremely black Op's in a dark cubicle in the Pentagon for the past FIVE year and push him onto President Obama as their best man with a 'winning' strategy in the Afghanistan War to become the Afghanistan field commander.

    The Pentagon set-up President Obama to fail. From day one, the UK and fellow NATO commanders stated McChrystal's 'shake and bake' strategy would FAIL. And in the only test of McChrystal's strategy which was in Marjah, after temporary removal of the Taliban, the strategy appears to have failed and the Taliban are returning. The residents in Marjah largely reject the shake and bake Afghanistan police and regional governors forced on them as utterly corrupt and by and large trust and support the Taliban whom they see as the lesser evil of the two choices!

    Afghanistan is not going to become America's 53rd. State, the US soldiers are not going to in mass become Afghanistan citizens and there is no total removal of the Taliban soldiers and fighters. The Afghanistan residents are the Taliban soldiers and fighters. If the goal of America's Occupation of Afghanistan was to root out the Al Qaeda members, Mission Accomplished, they moved to Pakistani ISI-CIA safe-houses years ago. Time to declare victory and bring the US troops home from Iraq and then in Afghanistan.

    June 23, 2010 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Sunni

    The Afghan people do not have to like our President's decision; I have no doubt that they might think it is "no big deal". They do not have our perspective on our Commander in Chief and the power that he rightly holds. NO ONE can talk crap about the President and his staff, particularly a high ranking military official during war time. I would take it a step further and call it Treason, personally.

    June 23, 2010 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Hamed

    Afghanistan became a cemetery for all super power since 19th century, when will U.S. learn their lessons. learn from the Russains, British and whoever tried to caputer Afghanistan before.

    June 23, 2010 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
  22. fcarr662

    Freedom of Speech is a luxury of the civilians of this country. The military personnel of the US forfeit most of their rights in order to serve their country. McCrystal was wrong to publicly voice his opinion and as much as it pains me to agree with Obama..... The CIC was correct in accepting his resignation. McCrystal could be court-martialed for his "mistake", that is if you actually believe it was a mistake.

    June 23, 2010 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • ImNoExpert

      >"as much as it pains me to agree with Obama..... "

      i lold

      June 23, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  23. ImNoExpert

    So now that Petraeus looks like the replacement, whats his track record? How does he stack up? Does anyone think that Petraeus will continue the COIN tactics that McCrystal started that seem to be working effectively?

    June 23, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Stefanie

    It appears to me that most of the people who think what he said wasn't enough to warrant the punishment have clearly never been in the military. I have not been in the military, however I have been fired from saying my supervisor was a jerk in less nice terms than that in a voicemail I left for my husband while mistakenly using the work phone to make the call. I made the call after I was off the clock, but that was irrelevant. I spoke poorly of my supervisor and that would cause hostile work environment and caused a lack of faith in my ability to perform my duties under that supervisor if that was my now known opinion of him. So, I would think that is much the same thing that has happened here. When you are a general in the military, your job is to listen to the orders of the commander in chief ie. fight in a war even if you do not agree, lead your men according to the strategies expressed to you, and to address your concerns in the proper manner following the appropriate chain of command, and if you don't like it, then resign and face the consenquences therein. But, don't talk to a civilian new publication that folks you are missing the point...Rolling Stone is sold in other countries, how does that make us look that someone in a high ranking position in our military is making comments like a child about other retired colleagues, and then our civilian leaders in government...that is not something that can be tolerated. I doubt he's upset about it, he's a general he is not new to being in the military so I am sure he knew he broke the rules perhaps he just hoped he'd be let off the hook but that is not a good lesson to teach everyone else that is enlisted. These wars have been long, and hard and we can't have morale destroyed by someone in the leadership roles bad mouthing our leaders and making everyone else in lower ranks think they can too.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • viacondios

      for those commenting that those who don't feel the punishment was the right thing to do and that we must not be in the military – YOU ARE WRONG. Whether he's a high ranking official or not – true should not disrespect the CIC...and after reading this article 4 times – there's no disrespect that came out of the General's mouth – none, zero. This General has more integrity that Obama ever will. This General has more guts than Obama ever will. This General has more knowledge, experience and qualities to lead than Obama ever will. Don't speak for those in the military unless you are there now or have served....bottom line – we all have our opinions and if you think what the general did is disrespectful – are you lining up to empeach the prez...since he has spoken poorly about a number of people, groups, etc...and has disrepected a number of people since taking office! Let's start with the Boston police department (some small town) where he called them all stupid...guess that's not disrespectul to you...but in my book – you call someone stupid – I suggest a beer is not the way to apologize.

      June 23, 2010 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Erik

    Great were going back in time again.... Its about to get nasty in Afhghanistan...Pray for our Troops...(I've been in Afghanistan for the last five years and there hasn't been any better progress since the COIN tactics were introduced by Mcyrstal.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Donna

    I have zilch respect for the Obama administration. I wish McChrystal had had the power to boot Obama out today for treason. I guess he just couldn't bite his tongue any more.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  27. FreeDrop

    Obama apparently reads "Rolling Stone" but not Arizona immigration laws.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  28. suzyljank

    The building blocks of a good administration are people with a wide swath of opinions. In this administration if you're not a yes man, you're out. Doesn't matter if your a democrat or a republican. When your party gets in office all they care about is staying in office and to heck with the american people. I thought Obama campaigned on bringing troops home and winding down the war. Guess most have forgotten that promise. He sure has. He's indecisive, slow in reacting to a situation and instead leading he waits for others to make his decisions for him. It's time for a serious third party, no more majority rule stuff. Just get down to working for all the people in the united states instead of a select few.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  29. JsarverCNN

    General McChrystal has been relieved of command. Was this the right move for the Obama administration? What are your thoughts? Share them with CNN iReport– http://ireport.cnn.com/ir-topic-stories.jspa?topicId=7233

    June 23, 2010 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Seraphim0

    Go Petraeus

    June 23, 2010 at 1:34 pm | Report abuse |
  31. clarkairbase

    He has been relieved of his command as of now.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Erik

    The bottom line is the General made a mistake, he's always been know for speaking how he feels. If you read his history you will see he has always had a problem with authority. The Most important issue that needs to be raised is that he is the man for the JOB> (COIN) was introduced in Iraq by him and it made a dramatic difference. As an American or a coalition ISAF solider your only chance at engaging the enemy is getting the support of the population. A better way of looking at it is how David Guolga Lt. COl. of the COIN tactics once stated. "Think of the Country as a fish bowl, and the Insurgent as the Fish, the water is the population. If you take away the water the fish can no longer function and will be left in the open to fight." COIN is a tactic that is best used with a general who understands his environment by getting out among the people. The General was frustrated made a mistake but the bottom line is if you take away the General you have just lost the initiative and will only give the Taliban and Al-Qaida an extraordinary victory. The only way to win in Afghanistan is through the COIN tactics purposed by Mcyristal. Education and time will only tell, if the Afghan people want it for them self’s. The Taliban are just waiting on the side lines just like the Viet Kong did when turmoil started among our leaders in Washington for us to trough the towel so they can march back in to Kabul. (God Help us All if that happens)

    June 23, 2010 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
  33. kriera

    i thought we live in a free country,freedom of speech,freedom of thoughts......

    June 23, 2010 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • matt

      That's not how it works in the military. You give up some rights to serve your country and protect the rights of others. You can't just say whatever you want. Anyone with a military background knows this.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      Matt's 100% correct. Once you sign yourself up, you are bound to the UCMJ. The general grossly violated that in his interview with Rolling Stone. He broke the UCMJ, he was relieved of his command. Actions have consequences.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Toni Amato

    Gen McChrystal is a career military man, he knows about the chain of command and the do's & dont's of following orders...he is not a newbie,therefore no exceptions should be made HE MUST BE FIRED. Pres. Obama is his Commander-in-Chief and McChrystal's behavior is nothing short of insubordination, something which i am positive he(McChrystal would not accept or allow from his troops. He should have taken lessons from Colin Powell, a class act of a General. Since Karzai loves him so much...he should go and work for him.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  35. Dsync

    How quickly you all forget that the command level in afghanistan pre McChrystal was deemed to be utterly incompetent. 0 relationships were fostered between the former commander and the afghans or for that matter NATO leadership. US FORCES Afghanistan was in utter disarray with 0 progress being made. All the best units were sent to Iraq leaving afghanistan with little as far as cohesive command units. Of course there were less casualties because for the most part the enemy controlled large area's with little troop presence. The Europeans at the time were ridiculously corrupt, with sotries of Itallians Paying off the taliban not to attack their FOB's, the other euro's gaining reputations of simply shooting anything and everything that got within 1000 feet of their convoys in major cities. The Regional Command's barely communicating. I mean Afghanistan before McChystal was a joke.

    June 23, 2010 at 1:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • clarkairbase

      Yes Afghanistan before him was a joke, now he IS the joke.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  36. makewaves

    McChrystal did not come up with the new Afghan strategy. It was handed to him in a memo. There are hundreds of people capable of doing that job. Git rid of him!

    June 23, 2010 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • clarkairbase

      Perhaps a better reading of recent history would reveal that McChrystal did come up with the plan. His plan was backed by Petraeus, Gates, Mullen and to some extent Gen Jones. With the exception of Hillary Clinton he denounced (more or less) everybody else in the current admin (Obama, Biden, Holbrooke and Eikenberry). He should be fired not because his plan is failing but because he can't keep his mouth shut and do his job. Perhaps he is trying to get fired?

      June 23, 2010 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
  37. abbydelabbey

    As the daughter of a career military man and the wife of a retired military man with nephews who were 4th generation military (and one of whom still serves in the army) let me say this:

    McChrystal was insubordinate; he knows what the chain-of-command is and who his commander-in-chief is; he knows the rules and regulations of the military. He clearly and substantially was insubordinate. He is more than a runaway general; he is a loose cannon that has managed to offend our NATO allies, has permitted his subordinates to behave badly and in a manner unbecoming of an officer, and has basically done everything you should not do as a officer, as a general. He let his ego and his mouth and the mouths of his staff over-ride the rules and reg's.

    If those of you who support McChrystal think that what he did wasn't all that bad and therefore shouldn't be fired - consider this - do you want your son, your daughter to be serving under someone who lacks that much self-control, that cannot maintain discipline within his own staff? Do you want someone whose own ego and whose personal ambition will over-ride your son's life, your daughter's life? That's what happens with "runaway" generals, "loose cannons."

    Such generals get soldiers killed by their own arrogance - HUBRIS - the greatest flaw in all the Greek tragedies.

    He could be called up on a variety of charges but probably won't be.

    He should be demoted and fired.

    June 23, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Nick Hartney

    Hopefully Obama uses this an opportunity to get out of Afganistan.

    June 23, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Frank

    Put a fork in Obama. He's done!

    June 23, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      He's done for punishing a GENERAL who knows the Uniform Code of Military Justice, but broke it anyway? Get over it. This isn't about Obama, this is about a general who grossly violated the UCMJ. I disliked Bush, but if a general did this to Bush, I'd still say he deserved punishment.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Bbar

    If O only knew anything about the military things may be different. Has he ever feared for his sorry life in a war zone....I think not. Did he serve his country in the armed forces...I think not. Does he have a military background...I think not. Leave the man alone and let him run things as he and other military officials thinks necessary.

    June 23, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      What gets me about people who speak on this like you is this: you all think this has something to do with how the general was handling Afganistan. It does not. The general violated the UCMJ and deserves punishment. It's not because of how he was running things or his relationship with the afgans... he violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice. He can get prosecuted for this and stripped of retirement benefits, and even jail time.

      What part of: 'He broke the law' do you not understand?

      June 23, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  41. fejolie

    To hell with political correctness. It is not serving us well in this country, where truth is the best kept secret. Tell it like it is, and keep McChrystal. I'd vote for him, and now sorry I voted for Obama!!!

    June 23, 2010 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      Sorry you civilians dont understand honor, duty, and respect, but that is what the military code is for, upholding the military way.

      Behave like a soldier or get out, period.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Steve

    I agree with you AW, however that isnt the point at all....McChrystal violated the military code of conduct. That is where this whole thing BEGINS & ENDS.

    It doesnt matter about why we are there....it doesnt matter if McChrystal is unhappy with things...all that matters is that he broke the military rules of conduct and he knew it. He was aware of the consequences of his actions...every soldier is aware of these rules.

    In the end, if you are MCChrystals side, then you are nothing more than an apologist who doesnt really understand the military way.

    June 23, 2010 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • abbydelabbey

      Absolutely, Steve.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  43. clarkairbase

    These posts are hilarious! The 4-star apparantly forgot that the one person whose approval he really needs is his boss (POTUS and C in C).

    June 23, 2010 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
  44. pokielo

    This is very funny and hilarious. Another rerun of more inconsistancy of what real moral character are compare to leadership character. If you were smart enough to hold your position that why in hell would opne your mouth to the media (rollingstone) to get you in trouble in the first place. I think it's time for you to go there General. Your making too much friends in AFG and not getting anything done but killing our troops on ground there with lies and deciets back to the homefront. You much go like the movie Avatar – you don't belong in AFG anymore.

    June 23, 2010 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Anonymous

    The President, as the Commander-in-Chief, is General Stanly McChrystal's boss.

    The money-lenders, however, are the President's boss (as well as arbiters of the media and press).

    It has been an age-old relationship between princes and moneylenders. What they fear the most are potential kings; men like McChrystal.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Mary D

      The President as the Commander in Chief should FIRE the SOB!

      June 23, 2010 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  46. larry

    The General is just telling it like it is! go McChrystal. I'm fed up with politics as usual. it's nice to hear the truth for a change.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
  47. RichM

    It is foolish to argue with results in wartime. The civilian leadership must assert control, but if it costs us the war we need to be careful how we handle this. Afghan civilian casualties are not acceptable and heavily detrimental to the war effort. We can only win by bringing good governance to Afghanistan, otherwise we lose. Hopefully his replacement will understand that.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  48. AC

    I think that the President was right when he spoke at the end. If he is really concern about the war then he should keep the general, but if he is more concern about the chain of commands then he should let the general go. However, if the President decides to keep the general then it is imperative that the President provide him with all the resources in a timely fashion and give him enough authority and leverage to conduct and finish the job the general was hired to do.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  49. ED

    How about this...let him resign/retire...he will make about $90k retirement salary the rest of his life and make $50k per speech on the touring circuit...plus another million or two promoting his book on the war and another $10 million on what he thinks of the Obama Administration.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  50. Tom

    The general might have been too busy to invest much thought in the presence of the RS reporter during daily operations. The fact that RS was there, and not some magazine for grown ups, such as NYT, is regrettable. The reporter must have been aware of what damage his article would produce. However, his point is to make it interesting for a normally politically uninterested audience (in the same edition of RS, there is a lengthy portray of Lady Gaga). The general falsely assumed some level of journalistic integrity, maturity, and responsibility from this Hastings guy. However, Hastings is a sensationalist reporter, one step away from a paparazzi, as he is working for a paparazzi magazine. Shame on him. What a traitor to jeopardize the US operations in Afghanistan for the kind of journal that RS is.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  51. Rupert Jilneck

    Am I in the right place for the "McChrystal Watch 2010" ???

    June 23, 2010 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  52. Jim H.

    President Obama's public comments about the article are inappropriate as well. He should invite the General for a beer and shoot some hoops and settle this situation.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  53. Jim Bob

    Let's stone him to death!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yeah!!!!!!!! Disrespect is such a horrible, horrible, horrible, unspeakable crime.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      It's against the UCMJ. What the general did was breaking the law in the military. Get over it. The guy deserves to be punished.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  54. AW

    I am a Canadian, but of course, I read the CNN webpage and we are involved in thes wars in Afg and Iraq. I personally have lost sight of why we are in these countries. SO WHAT if the guy made comments. BIG DEAL. Maybe he just wanted to sound off. What–doesn't the President want to listen or does he have an ego that is so big that he can't listen to a general that is THERE. I think this is like the movie with Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholison where Tom Cruise just kept baiting Jack Nicholson till he got it all off his chest–and the character Jack played did! The whole rationale of what was done in the movie(and some of it was wrong and wrongly said) came out! Honestly, these wars are DRAGGING ON, and–apparently–the people there don't want freedom and democracy. So why don't we pull out and fix our own problems (money, social, etc) back at home. Everyone seems to be in debt here, so why are we inteferring with those people there when our own house is in disorder. Bring the soldiers home and put them to work to guard things here and make our society safer. Obama said that he was going to end the war, and it is still dragging on. Maybe this brass wanted to sound off. Maybe he thinks Obama is a paper pusher. The big brass could have done it better, but if you muzzle the voice of a soldier that is involved and don't want to hear the voice of experience, well, can't the President listen. Let's face it: this guy wanted it known how he felt and you don't have to bend over backwards to paper pushers whom you perceive don't know what they're doing when it's your job (in this case, the army).

    June 23, 2010 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      AW: There is a section of the Uniform Code of Military Justice that makes statements made to public outlets (such as the General made) illegal for military. In private as opinion, think and say what you will. You do NOT air these things to the public, expecially the press. It is against the law for him. he can be prosecuted for it. It's not a matter of 'oh, Obama got upset because he doesn't like him" no... it's a matter of LAW. The general broke it. He has to be held to the same accountability as any other soldier. And he knows that. Which is what makes his flagrant disregard of that fact such a big deal. Especially since he's as high-profile as he is.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Gayle

    A few facts folks
    1) the current policy in Afghanistan is the one promoted by McCrystal.(sp).
    2) The article does not contain any criticisms against the policy by Mccrystals or his staff
    3) Solders on the ground are criticizing the policies implimented by Mccrystal.
    4) The harshest criticisms in the article by Mc and staff are directed at folks who advocated a different policy..

    Now please continue to make wild claims, however you all should really go to rolling stone dot com and read the article.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  56. larry

    This dude mccrystal,should be busted,and fired 'NOW'.he lower himself this,type,'dude'himself.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  57. ED

    McChrystal didn't like the fact that the Obama administration took so long to approve his troop request...in the mean time more troops died because they didn't have enough on the ground to stop the taliban insurgents or have enough to cover the areas they needed...he shouldn't have been critical of the Administration in public even though we all knew that Obama is over his head and his advisor are crap, especially his VP...but be that as it may its a mistake we voted for and now we have to live with it....nextime complain in private.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  58. vernon

    My head is going to explode if I have to read one more idiot claiming this has something to do with "free speech." In the military your "free speech" ends where superior rank begins.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
  59. vernon

    My head is going to explode if I have to read one more idiot claiming this has something to do with "free speech." In the military your "free speech" ends where superior rank begins. Also, some people need to ask themselves if their hatred for Barack Obama is so great that they are willing to sacrifice such a fundamental American principle as civilian control over the military. If they are, they are setting a dangerous precedent that could come back to bite us.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
  60. Gus

    Hard to believe and understand how so many people are calling for the head of Gen. Stanley McChrystal for his unprofessional remarks of some of the buttholes in Washington and yet they aren't calling for the heads of those people who refuse to enforce protection of our country's borders (which by oath) they are sworn to do, or for the heads of ... See Morethose who allow the American Flag to be flown upside down or for the heads of those who want the word God to be removed from being spoken in schools. Maybe it's a political move by Obama simply to allow ACORN to take over military management for this country.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      Or, Gus, the general could have violated the UCMJ and is getting rightfully punished for it. By all accounts he could end up in jail for it.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
  61. max

    I would fire him if I were president.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  62. Randy Oneil

    Now Obama can learn how those Boston cops felt when he opened his big mouth without thinking, remember the Harvard prof arrest? Now McChrystal needs to invite Obama to Afghanistan for a beer, the issue will go away.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  63. VR

    Pardon me. I wish to replace my second sentence with... Too bad he has such a big *STUPID EGOTISTICAL* mouth. See ya', McChrystal. Don't let the door hit your dumb a*ss on the way out.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  64. Steve

    This is very simple for those who have been or are in the military. McChrystal violated article 88 of the military code of conduct and should be punished appropriately, plain and simple. Rules are rules in the military and if you cannot follow them (especially a 4 star general) then you are given the boot, thats how it works.

    In the military, you cannot afford any gray areas. The way everything runs depends on black and white choices.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  65. VR

    McChrystal has to go. Too bad he has such a big mouth. I would have thought someone in his position would have more class and be a good role model for our troops. Instead, his insubordination threatens the whole structure. Replace him. Period.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
    • ED

      VR you have no idea of what the man said or didn't say all you care about is seeing someone in a position of authority fall...it comes easy from a person like you who cowers behind other who take responsibility for their actions.

      June 23, 2010 at 11:31 am | Report abuse |
      • VR

        Sorry, Ed. You're wrong. No member of the military can disrespect the commander in chief and get away with it. McChrystal has to go. Plain and simple. He has only himself and his big mouth to blame.

        June 23, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
      • ED

        VR, I can agree with your comment on disrespecting the CinC...I know when I was serving in the 90's I couldn't stand Bill Clinton's handling of the military...but we never openly criticized him...but from what I read in the pre-published article he doesn't criticize Obama but some of the folks that surround him...the VP is not in the COC unless the president is decommissioned...and neither are his advisors. The media is playing us for fools again.

        June 23, 2010 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |
      • Seraphim0

        Ed- the article in the UCMJ that the General violated stipulates that public comments against the VP are still considered unlawful.

        June 23, 2010 at 12:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • oui

      do you know anything about him? he is a great role model and has done some amazing work in Afghanistan.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Captin Crunch

    McChrystal is a 4 star general, who must think he is untouchable. Anyone who works for someone else, any moron knows that if you rip your boss, devulge classified information, or critisize your organization to the news media, you will most likely lose your job. McChrystal should have had the basic sense not to do an unauthorized interview with Rolling Stone Magazine. What stupidity.
    General Patton was a great general, who could not keep his mouth shut to the news media. The government kept him, gave him several chances because he got results on the battle field. They later reassigned him to get his mouth shut. They may have to do the same with McChrystal, however at this point I think he should be given one last warning by the Administration to not give any interviews, unless authorized and briefed in advance.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • mbo

      This happens when you have absolutely no respect for your incompetent boss and are at your wits ends and do not care about the consequences. Rather walk out than obey orders from a moron.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        Then you quit your job not bad mouth your boss!!!

        June 24, 2010 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  67. mike

    Obama has likened to Lincoln
    lincoln was know for keeping enemies and detractors around.
    There was even a recent book on that topic.
    It would be very Lincolnesqe for him to make a statement, accept an apology, and let this guy keep doing his job well

    MK

    June 23, 2010 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
    • RJ

      Lincoln fired generals left and right. Usually after they bungled things rather than for insubordination, though. That was Truman.

      June 23, 2010 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      How is anything different from what He did and Patton Did??? They fired Patton so why is He any better??? The President is still the President even though you think different!!! He has to have the respect of all those under him... If not He has the right to fire them!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Herb

    Has anybody bothered to question the accuracy of the Rolling Stone article or does everybody just assume that every word is accurate? Well, I have read the article and there is much to question including alleged quotations and some very bothersome personal conclusions injected into the article as if they were fact.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      If it wasn't accurate the General would have said something about it!!! It was accurate that isn't the problem... The problem is He said it to them in the first place!!! Knowing it was on the books...

      June 24, 2010 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  69. Liberal4Obama

    Obama won't fire him but he has publicly humiliated him, that should be enough for both to save face and go on to work for a good outcome in Afghanistan

    June 23, 2010 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • mbo

      If Obama is a little smart and puts his enormous ego aside, he would realize that:
      1. McChrystal knows what he is doing.
      2. That the truth always hurt.
      3. He has no competent replacement, at the moment, to lead this war.
      In 5 years McChrystal will be remembered as a no nonsense general with the guts to disagree with an inneficient boss, and Obama will be lost somewhere back in Chicago with Rev. Wright.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
      • Seraphim0

        If you were smart you'd realize that the general grossly violated the UCMJ. Punishment is a result of his actions having consequences. Sorry to burst your bubble.

        June 23, 2010 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      Obama has the same rights as a Employer that is ahead of a Business!!! Because how can you be the head of anything??? If you let your Employees bad mouth you??? You need the respect of those that are working for you... That goes the same for the President!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |
  70. rocky

    Having served my country during the Viet Nam conflict, I can see similar parallels with the war on terrorism being conducted in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Our politicians have a penchant to hamstring the efforts of the military leaders and quite frankly don't seem to want to provide what is needed to get the job done. McChrystal may have been subtley voicing his frustration which is no reason to relieve him of his position and punish him for doing his job.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      If the Generals had the same chance in Vietnam ad Korea that they have in Iraq and Afghanistan... Maybe we would have won the wars there!!! At Least Obama is listening to those that know more than Him!!! But it is He that has to pick the one He feels is the best for what He wants to be done... It is up to the Generals to carry it out!!! Even if they think Theirs is better... Because if they are wrong... It would be the President that would get the blame not him!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  71. Rod

    BFD. I think there more important things for the president to take care of. Do your Job.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Philip

      I agree. Mr. President, do something to help our country.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  72. Steve

    We have troops dying in droves because of a crappy policy in Afghanistan, and McCrystal is going to get fired because he made fun of Obama?

    June 23, 2010 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      If he gets fired it will be because he violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice in a major way with that article. He broke the law.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jaybob

        Any soldier who has ever gotten a B.J. has also broken the law, according to the ancient and outdated UCMJ. There's even an article in there- Art. 134 that states "we don't have a rule saying what you did was wrong, but we decided it was wrong, so you're guilty under this article."

        June 25, 2010 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      Can you think of a better reason to fire him??? The President is the one that makes all the decisions... Because He is the one that gets the blame!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  73. Burbank

    I am so sick of that grossly overused "hearts and minds" phrase. Will someone pleeeaaase come with something else? I think I'll go take a staycatioin – there's another one. I think I'll shoot the next person that says either one... Ugh!!

    June 23, 2010 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  74. Rick McDaniel

    So what? It is the people who demand subservience, that are the problem. They refuse to listen to those who have something worthwhile to add to the discussion.

    Nothing ever improved, because someone else's ideas, were smothered by the oppression of a boss. There are an awful lot, of really bad bosses, in this world, who operate by the iron hand, and have the idea you only speak when spoken to.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • PopeJohnII

      So, you're telling us you've never served in the military and have no knowledge of what that means?

      June 24, 2010 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      If all they do is bad mouth the President... Then they have nothing worth while to hear!!! Who wants to listen to Racist???

      June 24, 2010 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  75. James

    LISTEN UP! This is not a "free speech" issue! If you bad mouth your company, or boss in a civilian job, and they found out, guess what would happen? You would probably be fired. The same goes for the US military, but even more so. If McCrystal can openly and publicly question the leadership and judgement of his superiors (even if they are civilian), then so can his subordinates. If you think for one second that General McCrystal would allow any of his subordinates to openly an publicly criticize and mock him then you are a fool. He would fire them, and possibly even bring them up on charges.

    He needs to be fired, reduced in rank and told to retire.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • jmh100

      You are right, and this is why we have an oil spill in the Gulf, Enron, WorldCom, and Madoff....because we now live in a world where it is shut up and do as you're told. Thank goodness there are still a few who have the courage to speak their minds. Wish someone at BP had.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
      • Seraphim0

        You're trying to mix military and civilian issues and say they operate the same. They do not. Anyone who has ever worn a uniform can tell you the same thing.

        June 23, 2010 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        They have had a lot of oil spills in this country and the world long before this!!! But since it is Obama as President they are making a big deal out of it!!!

        June 24, 2010 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
  76. Facefur

    While I understand the reaction to what amounts to open criticism of the CinC, what I've been able to read of his remarks, his, not his subordinates, do not strilke me as contempt as much as personal reaction. He has clearly been working to implement thegoals that the President has established for him, has been at least if not more successful than his predecessors, and appears to grasp the nature of the warfare he is conducting. That makes him a good man for the job. His candor, however, places him in a severely compromised position.

    Perhaps the Army should assign a "handler" for him, to make sure his personal opinions are not let loose in a forum where they could be published again.

    I am old enough to recall similar problems with the Viet Nam conflict, where successful military commanders, who used methods other than the doctrinally prescribed ones, were basically punished for their practices. I'd be worried that we're more concerned with a united public relations front than a good policy to gain ground in Afghanistan and reach the overall goals required to safeguard the U.S. from future Taliban-sponsored terrorists and radical Islmaists.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      If you were ever in the service!!! You can say what ever you want to your Superior... But you don't say it to the Press!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  77. DD

    Insubordination in the military cannot and will not be tolerated. Especially not in Afghanistan. Hypocrites, much?

    June 23, 2010 at 10:42 am | Report abuse |
  78. ireuel

    Yes he is allowed to say with all due respect sir I totally disagree with you Mr President. The troops do not care for the plan this President has put forth. It is getting them killed instead of the enemy they are fighting. That is a fact and if we don't change our plan, we will leave with our tails between our legs like we did in Vietnam. If you are at war winning is the best option. If we do not want to win then bring them all home now. These are our sons, daugthers, mothers and fathers of someone here. I feel we are not in it to win anymore. The day we are all at peace would be amazing, but this will never happen and so alway protect your country and most of all yours soilders you have in harms way.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      He can say it to the President... But not to the Newspapers are TV Stations!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  79. Bruce Campbell

    McChrystal's comments were tantamount to treason. He should court martialed, suffer reduction in rank, and with a loss of all military benefits, including retirement payments. He should also be tossed in the stockade for several months.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Facefur

      You, sir, are in need of an IQ boost (to something above 0). McChrystal may have been disrepectful in his opinions, but there is no indication that he has been doing anything other than trying to carry out the military goals set for him by the President. His only offense was to allow his opinions to be published.

      For you to accuse him of treason is small-minded at best. He has devoted his entire career to the service of the U.S., and deserved our respect, thanks and honor, regardless of his poor public relations skills. Please crawl back into your pseudo-partiotic hole and be quiet.

      June 23, 2010 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
      • Seraphim0

        You, sir, have no knowledge of military justice. What the General did is actually a CRIME under military law.

        June 23, 2010 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      Eh, I think resignation in disgrace is sufficient. If he was openly subverting civilian control of the military, then I might agree with you.

      June 23, 2010 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      He would have been executed not fired in most Countries if He did it there!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
  80. Jeremy

    While I understand what Article 88 and 89 is, it is a General's job to disagree with things he does not see fit. The General will be allowed to resign without anything more than a letter of reprimand or counseling whatever you want to call it. I also though believe that mocking someone lacks professionalism and reminds me of a three year old. A lot of the comments that were sheer disrespectful were not directly out of the General's mouth but merely what others had reported hearing him say. Would that make the basis of the article itself hearsay? Well so and so said he said this.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
    • John

      "it is a General's job to disagree with things he does not see fit."

      No, it very much is not, especially within a public forum. If General McChrystal had called up Gates and Obama and expressed his concerns and any disagreements to them, privately, then he would be doing his job. What he did instead was show contempt and disregard for the civilian leadership, and for civilian officials like Holbrooke, Jones (a retired general), and Eikenberry (another retired general).

      June 23, 2010 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      If they don't like the orders... Then they should quit not say anything against them!!! Either you do what your told and get out that is the only 2 choices you have in the Service... The President is the Commander In Chief!!! It is His responsibility to do what He feels is right are wrong... Because if it goes bad... He is the the one to get the blame... Unless your Bush and Cheney... They rather blame Obama...

      June 24, 2010 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  81. david

    First of all, he did not criticize Obama, he criticized Obama's administration officials. That is not an offence. If he said, directly, something against the president, then it is an offence. I am sure that most everyone does not agree with their bosses all of the time.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      Actually, it is an offense. It wasn't a slew of minor aides that the general was dissing. The VP was included- that alone makes this a UCMJ issue that is prosecutable.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Matt

    Who among us hasn't criticized a superior, be it a teacher, a boss or a parent? Who among us on at one occasion hasn't had his words make it back to the very person who was the target of the ridicule? It happens. It's natural. It's human nature to complain about things. Is it a big deal? Not in my book.

    Did McChrystal do anything to undermine Obama or Biden? Did he fail to follow orders or actively work to subvert their authority? From what I've read, the answer is a resounding 'no.' If Obama fires McChrystal for the comments he made it would show that the President doesn't have the thick skin necessary for someone sitting in the Oval Office. If he fires McChrystal it should be for substantive reasons, not off-handed remarks caught and reported by a journalist. Stuff like that happens, to me; to you; to everybody on occasion. It's not worth firing him over and certainly not worth losing the progress/momentum gained in Afghanistan as a result of McChrystal's leadership.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
    • PopeJohnII

      My guess is that you still live at home, you are still in high school, you have never held a job with meaningful responsibiloity, you work for someone you are related to; or some combination of all any of these.

      June 24, 2010 at 12:44 am | Report abuse |
  83. Kellys Kaunda (male) Lusaka, Zambia

    The remarks have crystalized the occassional tensions that exist in relations between the military and civilian authorities. With this in mind, Mr. Obama should ask himself: Is he angry because as a person his self-esteem has been injured or is there indeed a breakdown of military civil relations? Since the latter is the bigger principle, the President, in my view, may find this not being the case and will consequently talk things over as gentlemen do and allow the general to return to the battlefield.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
  84. Mark

    I'm sorry to have to be the bearer of bad news but Gen. McChrystal is on his way out like it or not. Whether you agree or disagree with what he said, the fact of the matter is that what he did was a clear violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Specifically Article 88, 'contempt toward officials'. At this point, he'll be lucky if he's allowed to resign. Under the punitive section of the UCMJ, he could lose his rank,pay,pension AND be sent to Ft.Levenworth for up to a year! The lesson here is simple, if you are in the military, you are allowed to have your own opinions.....just keep them to yourself!

    June 23, 2010 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
  85. Brian

    Many freedoms are not available in the military. You are held to the Uniform Code of Military Justice. One thing the military cannot afford is a morale problem induced by an out of line Four-Star General. If the General bad mouths the Commander-in-Chief, so do his troops. Do you think that it's a good idea for 94,000 troops to hate their Commander-in-Chief? In the military, you follow your leaders without question, or you risk your life and the lives around you in selfishness. IT IS CODED INTO THE MILITARY LAW. Many "Americans" could learn a lot entering into one service or another for this country.
    This General may be useful and smart, but he comes with baggage that is unacceptable for this role.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
    • brent

      I didn't find anything in the UCMJ that mentions a limitation to free-speech or any reference to disagreement with leadership. What I read only spoke to allocation of power and proceedings. I get your point but I think that's an ideal, not a law from what I can tell. Also, he's not exactly disobeying orders or being insolent.

      June 23, 2010 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
      • John

        Article 88 of the UCMJ
        Any commissioned officer who uses contemptuous words against the President, the Vice President, Congress, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of a military department, the Secretary of Transportation, or the Governor or legislature of any State, Territory, Commonwealth, or possession in which he is on duty or present shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.
        -
        The official or legislature against whom the words are used must be occupying one of the offices or be one of the legislatures named in Article 88 at the time of the offense. Neither “Congress” nor “legislature” includes its members individually. “Governor” does not include “lieutenant governor.” It is immaterial whether the words are used against the official in an official or private capacity. If not personally contemptuous, ad-verse criticism of one of the officials or legislatures named in the article in the course of a political discussion, even though emphatically expressed, may not be charged as a violation of the article.

        Similarly, expressions of opinion made in a purely private conversation should not rdinarily be charged. Giving broad circulation to a written publication containing contemptuous words of the kind made punishable by this article, or the utterance of contemptuous words of this kind in the presence of military subordinates, aggravates the offense. The truth or falsity of the statements is immaterial.

        http://usmilitary.about.com/od/punitivearticles/a/mcm88.htm

        It's not a matter of free speech, it's a matter of the Uniform Code of MIlitary Justice, the Law of the military that all servicemembers in our all-volunteer military swear and agree to uphold when they sign up, from the lowest E-1 to the highest O-10.

        Shinseki got sacked in 2003 from his position as Chief of Staff of the US Army for telling Congress that we'd need hundreds of thousands of troops in Iraq, when Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz stridently claimed it'd be much less. Three years later, it was clear that Shinseki had been right, but he'd lost his job anyway. And he didn't even break the UCMJ, he simply testified honestly and under oath to Congress when called. Now the same people who backed Rumsfeld and attacked Shinseki are showing just how short their memories really are.

        -ex USAF SSgt

        June 23, 2010 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
      • Chan

        John laid it out pretty well, but yeah.

        Generally enlisted men and officers in any branch of the military have no freedom of speech whatsoever when it regards their opinion of their orders, superiors or mission. He's lucky that he's merely facing a potential firing...if an enlisted man publically spoke of a 4-* general the way that McChrystal's staff spoke of their superiors to Rolling Stone, they'd be court-marshaled and probably be doing time in Leavenworth for it.

        June 23, 2010 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
      • PopeJohnII

        Don't take it personal, but when you learned to read, was it left to right, front to back? Or was it right to left, back to front?

        June 24, 2010 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  86. brent

    this is ridiculous considering the absolute mockery our leaders have made of their own offices over the past 15 or so years. oh no, how dare someone criticize the leadership of this country.. are you kidding me? are you KIDDING me?

    June 23, 2010 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      Brent: Read the UCMJ (article 88 in particular, I believe it is). The general BROKE THE LAW by saying these things publically. So, no, we aren't "kidding you." This is not something that is 'just now' being used. People have been prosecuted over this in the past.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
      • rista

        If you read the article you will realize that most of the "controversial" comments were not made by McChrystal they were attributed to anonymous "aides". About the only thing from the General that made me flinch werehis comments about the email from Holbrooke because they were indicative of two people who don't like each other much. The real question isn't McCrystal mouthing off it, it's why would he and his staff be stupid enough to hang out with a reporter for a month? In an interview with the reporter he said that as a result of the volcano eruption they got stuck in Europe together. Even if they did, that doesn't explain why they would have allowed the reporter get so much access. That was the real "poor judgement" that was shown.

        June 23, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  87. helen

    US Grant, Patton, etc were all outspoken......history records them as honest and tough.....not sure when it became a crime to speak your opinion.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
    • rocky

      I figure the General voiced the opinion of many people and I agree with him. I hope that those whose nose he put out of joint look at his record and let him get on with his business.

      June 23, 2010 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim

      General McChrystal's remarks reflect his passion for the safety and success of his soldiers as well as the non-combatant Afghan people. His frustration is clear. Should he have shown restraint in his comments? Yes.
      However it's quite possible that he doesn't have the candid or straightforward communications opportunities he SHOULD have with his superiors.

      June 23, 2010 at 11:33 am | Report abuse |
  88. Usman

    @Josh McChrystal's strategies are the reason why we're having any success in the war there now. Maybe you didn't read the article, or else you simply didn't understand. When civilian casualties were up, the insurgency was much stronger. Now that civilian casualties are low, BECAUSE OF McChrystal, the insurgency has lost support! We can't win this war without risking our soldiers' lives. At least they signed up for it... the innocent Afghan civilians that get killed by our bullets didn't.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
  89. john

    Freedom of speech is deader than a doornail.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      As a vet I can categorically tell you, that when you sign on the dotted line, you sign away your rights...that said, since the president is the commander in chief, it would be the same as a worker saying negative things about his boss...generally something you don't want to do, if you wish to keep your job.

      June 23, 2010 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • TR1020

      This man does not have freedom of speech. He is in the military. If one of McChrystal's subordinates showed him the same disrespect, do you not think he or she would be fired? Or at least reprimanded? He is in a highly public position. If he wants the freedom to talk badly about superiors, he should take a job in the private sector.

      June 23, 2010 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
      • Anonymous

        Hey Idiots, did any of you actually read the six page article? He never once criticized the President. The story was not based on an interview, the Rolling Stone Journalist was a media embed, which means he observed everything in his time with GEN McCrystal. The whole article was out to get the general. Controversy sells, and they wanted to promote it. Now they cost the best Commander in Afghanistan his job. Just ask the Afghans and the people we are trying to win over. Great Job media!

        June 23, 2010 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
  90. Arvo

    Its called free speech everyone should have the right to it even if others disagree with it public or private it's what your fighting for over their. Don't agree with the term he made a mistake he was speaking his true feelings and ruffled a few feathers of the real idots on Capitol Hill

    June 23, 2010 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Mark Williams

      Article 89 Disrespect towards a superior Disrespectful behavior is that which detracts from the respect due the authority and person of a superior commissioned officer. It may consist of acts or language, however expressed, and it is immaterial whether they refer to the superior as an officer or as a private individual. Disrespet by words may be conveyed by abusive epithets or other contemptuous or denunciatory language. Truth is no defense. Disrespect by acts includes neglecting the customary salute, or showing a marked disdain, indifference, insolence, impertinence, undue familiarity, or other rudeness in the presence of the superior officer

      June 23, 2010 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
      • Jim Bob

        Let's stone him to death!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yeah! Disrespect is such a horrible, horrible, horrible, unspeakable crime.

        June 23, 2010 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
    • ED

      Arvo, doesn't sound like u have ever been in the military...you basically give up your rights when you sign the dotted line...actually you don't lose your rights, but you are held accountable for what you say...that is a luxury that most civilians take for granted.

      June 23, 2010 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
      • matt

        Yep, people not familiar with the military don't understand that, but you give up a lot of your civilian rights when you become enlisted. It really can't be any other way if we want our military to be reliable and effective.

        June 23, 2010 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
      • chief

        I think most military people find common ground and understand this situation. My question is why did this General Officer feel the need to end his 35 year career in this manner? The Rolling Stone is way passed its social conscious prime time – almost like reading an article in Playboy. The General should have found another forum to vent his grievance, only on the job for one year and now replaced -

        June 23, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seraphim0

      mark: Thought it was article 88?

      And As for 'disrespect' being such a big deal- in the military you follow the chain of command or people can die. You respect your superiors. You do not diss your CO in public, and you especially to do not diss the CIC in public. Then again, you were obviously never in the military so you have no idea what this means.

      Is this all a 'big deal?' Yes. It's a really big deal. So big that it is a crime according to military justice.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • kwest

      When you sign on the dotted line to serve in the US military....you do not keep your right to free speech. If any of you idiots rambling about free speech had ever served a day in the military, you would know this.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  91. Ken

    if this was a first offence then let it be. But it is not. Civilian control over the military is paramount in a democracy. If he is allowed to return he takes back to the war front a hostility and contempt for his boss and the American people. He needs to go.

    June 23, 2010 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Kreczk

      That's why we have the 2nd amendment. To feel safe. Get it finally ?

      June 23, 2010 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
      • ImNoExpert

        How does private gun ownership relate to this?

        June 23, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Puff

      He showed contempt to a few people, NOT American people; don't mix them together, you idiot.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  92. Josh

    Ofcourse the Afghans want mcrystal to not resign becasue he cares more about them then the american soldiers. They no if mchrystal gets replaced then the war will be totally different and soldiers wont have to fear for their own lives anymore..

    June 23, 2010 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Sandy

      Obama will only have slackers on his staff. If Obama lets the General go then he has bigger issues to deal with. His firing will inflame many. Wall Street Journal has begun to slam Obama too. The General did not say anything about the President, directly. I support the General.

      June 23, 2010 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        You don't say anything about those higher than you... If you do you lose your job... Because you are suppose to follow your orders know matter what you feel about the orders!!!

        June 24, 2010 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        Sandy: Were you ever in the Service??? If you think Obama orders are bad!!! I wonder what you think of Bush's Orders were??? At Least Obama is listening to His Generals... Not like Bush who only listen to Cheney!!!

        June 24, 2010 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Brien

      You're an idiot Josh! Get off your parents couch and do something with your life!

      June 23, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stewart

      It's not that he cares more about the Afghans then soldiers, it's that he cares about both of them. You can't win a counterinsurgency war without having the people behind you. The General has done a lot of things to get the Afghans behind the American efforts over there, and that makes the soldiers safer.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sam

      In war soilders always have to worry about their lives. Its not like Generals resignation would all of a sudden make all the soilders in Afghanistan Iron Men

      June 23, 2010 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        The only General that stuck his head out with the troops was General Patton!!! The rest fought the wars where they could not get killed...

        June 24, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  93. Bill ---- Atlanta

    How did this turn into racism?

    June 23, 2010 at 9:27 am | Report abuse |
    • ImNoExpert

      Because racism makes every news story or controversy or scandal better. Where's Al Sharpton when you need him?

      June 23, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      Because if it would have been ordered from any one but Obama know one would never say anything wrong like that!!! The Generals just quit with Bush in office... They never said anything against Him!!!

      June 24, 2010 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  94. ziya

    go on idiots.

    June 23, 2010 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
    • James

      Didn't Hitler get rid of everyone that disagreed with him.....how is this different? Come on 2012, when America can finally fix their election mistake, and put a less arrogant President in office. Obama should actually listen to him, since McChrystal does actually have more experience than Obama.

      June 23, 2010 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
      • rachel

        To allow The General to stay would give creedence to an old saying "Wrong must be right".Of course it is ok to speak your feelings...in the appropriate places...at the appropriate times.This behaviour is what you might expect of a kindergarten child....lashing out in anger...with no regard for the disasterous consequences that could come in the wake.It sends a message to the enemies of the US....we are dysfunctional at the moment...a weak link ....come and get us the time is right.Bad choice.He may have BEEN the best...but there are chinques in the armour....sad day for the US.

        June 23, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
      • Seraphim0

        James:

        You're proving your ignorance of the issue. The issue is not that the general held a lesser opinion of Obama or his staff... the issue is that the Uniform Code of Military Justice prohibits him (and any member of the armed forces) from publically speaking out against the CIC, VP, Sec. of Defense, etc. Freedom of speech does NOT apply in its fullest extent to military men and women. This is the law. It has been for awhile. It is not suddenly new and Obama isn't "making something up" or just peeved that the general said these things.

        The man broke the UCMJ. Plain and simple. He grossly violated it. He COULD get prison time for it. President Obama was being generous by simply removing him from command.

        Whether or not you like Obama doesn't matter.. The general broke the UCMJ and is getting punished. I disliked Bush, but if this guy had done it to him, I'd still say he deserves to be punished. He violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice... he's getting off light.

        June 23, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
      • Sam

        General is not above the law. Also he should act like a general not an online blogger who can throw in comments without any worries of fireback.

        June 23, 2010 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jay Jahanzada

        Hey James,
        before you opened your mouth and throw some craps about a highly respected man of the world, you better think about yourself who you are???? and what percentage you are a human being.

        June 24, 2010 at 1:38 am | Report abuse |
      • Li Tai Fang

        "Didn't Hitler get rid of everyone that disagreed with him.....how is this different?"

        This is among the most retarded failure of logic I've seen way too often on the internet.
        Hey, Hitler eats breakfast in the morning. How is your eating breakfast in the morning different?

        June 24, 2010 at 3:21 am | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        If you want to win a war... You can only have one leader saying how it should be done!!! It is up the the Generals to advise the President... But it is the President that picks what He feels is the best plan to win the war!!! Not like Bush just listening to Cheney...

        June 24, 2010 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
      • page21

        @Seraphim
        Thanks for educating James on military law. It's obvious he has never served in the military.

        June 24, 2010 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        Hamas disallows mail, Red Cross visits
        UPI Wed, 23 Jun 2010 16:57 PM PDT
        JERUSALEM, June 23 (UPI) - Hamas says it will not allow the Red Cross to visit or allow any mail to or from captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit because of security concerns. Hamas – Gilad Shalit – Israel Defense Forces – Israel – International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement

        June 24, 2010 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
      • RetiredLE

        The General has a mountain of experience as compared to community organizer (what a joke) Nobama.

        June 24, 2010 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • T

      I am glad he is gone. Next is the rest of the gangs. Karzai and his cabinet including the ones with bags, United States top representative in Afghanistan.

      They are all corrupted.
      It is time to have a good leader with a great vision. This general will do it.
      I am sure he is the one to let Karzia and his gangs go.
      By by Karzia.

      June 23, 2010 at 9:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • T

      Karzia and his cabinet is next. Karzia is the one who supported the General. Today that General is gone. Karzia must go.

      June 23, 2010 at 9:31 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jay Jahanzada

        Petreus.... now its your F,,,,king turn to give some a....kicks to president deaf (karzia) he is the one whom does not want afghanistan to stand on its own feet becoz he himself is a taliban and member of Pakistan ISI agency... i mean an AGENT!!!!

        June 24, 2010 at 1:42 am | Report abuse |
      • ben

        T I'don't think it's necessary to have a president of a country to be kicked just for supporting a general. Also Hamid Karzai is the one who forced the taliban to surrender in Afghanistan.

        June 25, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      This is crazy! I want every person on here who is preaching about free speech to walk up to their boss and acted as rudely and disrespectful as the general did and then watch you realize your out of a job. Free speech and all the other rights everyone speaks of are not free they come with a price and those of us who defend them do not get those benefits. It is one thing for other countries to see our stupidity when it comes to political division but a completely different matter for them to see our military has no integrity and a complete lack of respect for our leadership. For those of you who complain he didn't say anything actions speak just as loud as words. Quit bashing on the leadership of this country and embrace what we have stand behind them and voice what you want not everything you don't want and when you don't get your way quit crying and throwing fits life isn't fair deal with it.

      June 24, 2010 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
      • page21

        Well said, Melissa.

        June 24, 2010 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jaybob

        The article was pretty interesting- he didn't "slam Obama"- one of his aides said, in a nutshell, that the General felt a "disconnect" in the office. The aide spoke his opinion. McCrystal didn't say anything "bad".

        The article showed exactly what the difference is between what everyone thinks is going on, and how things "really are". That's a fact. McCrystal is not a politician. His job is to win a war. Not kiss butt. Deal with it.

        Obama could not handle it, because it was "bad publicity". Obama said he would listen to his commanders on the ground, and has not done so until it was something that made him look bad.

        The General was in charge of Black Ops. Yeah, that happens. Get over it. A man who does black ops is a man who understands that solutions aren't always pretty. Function over form. Nothing about that says "be nice to everyone".

        The article had more opinions from the writer than the General. Obama is firing him because people see the lack of political leaders' understanding of what the war really is about. As soon as the men in suits and ties in air-conditioned offices understand that "the man on the ground knows what he is talking about", the sooner this stuff can get done.

        June 24, 2010 at 4:41 pm | Report abuse |