Gen. Stanley McChrystal lost his job when Rolling Stone magazine ran an article in which some of his aides made disparaging remarks about the vice president and others. But a newly released investigation by the Department of Defense inspector general finds neither McChrystal nor any of his aides did anything wrong.
In the article called "The Runaway General" reporter Michael Hastings wrote that one of McChrystal's aides referred to Vice President Joseph Biden as "Bite Me" and another referred to then-national security adviser Gen. James Jones as a "clown." FULL POST
[Update] At his retirement ceremony, Gen. Stanley McChrystal says his career didn't end as he'd wished. Watch part of McChrystal's speech
[Original post] A ceremony honoring retiring Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal is scheduled for Friday in Washington.
McChrystal's illustrious career came to an abrupt end when he resigned as the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan after he and his staff were quoted in a Rolling Stone magazine article criticizing and mocking key administration officials. FULL POST
(TIME.com) — Having taken over command of the U.S. mission in Afghanistan, General David Petraeus is thinking of easing restrictions imposed by his predecessor on when and how American troops can attack suspected enemy fighters. But a new, independent study from the non-profit National Bureau of Economic Research finds that the restraints like those put in place by the recently fired General Stanley McChrystal actually resulted in a decrease in insurgent attacks.
Soldiers in Afghanistan have grumbled for months that curbs on their firepower ordered by McChrystal last summer have emboldened the Taliban and put U.S. troops at greater risk. Those rules of engagement bar allied air and mortar strikes on houses unless allied troops are in immediate danger. "His rules of engagement put soldiers' lives in even greater danger," one soldier privately told Rolling Stone in the article that got McChrystal fired last month. "Every real soldier will tell you the same thing." Petraeus, in his Senate confirmation hearing after being tapped to succeed McChrystal, told the Armed Services Committee he is "keenly aware of concerns by some of our troopers on the ground about the application of our rules of engagement" and that he plans to "look very hard at this issue."
Khalil Nouri is the co-founder of New World Strategies Coalition Inc., a native Afghan think tank for nonmilitary solution studies for Afghanistan. The statements and opinions expressed in this guest blog are solely those of Khalil Nouri.
There is no doubt that the controversy around and resulting exit of Gen. Stanley McChrystal is a huge distraction to the impending campaign in Kandahar. The fallout could alter the course of the difficult war by significantly redefining the shape, form and function of the entire effort in Afghanistan.
The replacement of McChrystal is a major blow to the already slow-moving counterinsurgency operation in Kandahar, where the prospect for success throughout Afghanistan hinges upon success in the Pashtun heartland city that cradled the Taliban more than a decade ago.
McChrystal enjoyed the closest relationship of any American official with Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Karzai was in support of McChrystal’s continued service as the top general to lead the NATO operation in his country.
The recent change in commanders in Afghanistan is proof the U.S and its allies have lost the war, statements posted on two Islamist websites said Thursday.
Taliban spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousif Ahmadi said in one statement President Barack Obama wanted to save face by firing Gen. Stanley McChrystal and bringing in Gen. David Petraeus. McChrystal was relieved of duty - although he technically resigned - Wednesday after he and his staff made comments in a Rolling Stone magazine article that appear to mock top civilian officials, including the vice president.
"History is evident of more powerful and experienced generals than General McChrystal and empires mightier than the United States of America being surrendered and bowed down before the Afghans," Ahmadi said, according to the website statement.
Gen. David Petraeus told CNN on Thursday that he supports President Barack Obama's July 2011 deadline to start withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan, a key point of contention between the president and many of his Republican critics in Congress.
Petraeus - tapped to replace Gen. Stanley McChrystal as the U.S. commander in Afghanistan - expressed his respect and appreciation for McChrystal's work and said the circumstances surrounding the change in command are "sad."
[Updated at 3:07 p.m.] Earlier today, President Barack Obama accepted the resignation of Gen. Stanley McChrystal "with considerable regret" and nominated Gen. David Petraeus, the head of the U.S. Central Command.
Here's some early reaction to Obama's decision:
“I thought Obama's talk was rhetorically perfect, hitting all the right notes in explaining why McChrystal had to go, while paying tribute to McChrystal's service. The only big question he left hanging in just what happens to Central Command. Will Petraeus try to have both commands? Will someone else take over? With Pakistan, Iran and other Middle Eastern issues bubbling out there, this is a question that needs to be addressed ASAP.” (Thomas Ricks, Foreign Policy)
As the firestorm over Gen. Stanley McChrystal's comments and the resulting fallout continues, look back at McChrystal in action and words from the past year.
December 9, 2009: History and war
In an interview with CNN, McChrystal talks about lessons learned from the past.
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? FULL POST