Dear General McChrystal, you have huge balls!

Dogbert

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I personally feel that this guy is just vocalizing what a HUGE portion of the Defense Department is feeling
Anything substantial to back that claim up?

The way I see it, he's been out of line ever since the troop surge. It's not his job to call the President (his boss, mind you) out on things in public just because he doesn't like the way they're done. Any other job, and really any other rank in the military, and you'd be disciplined for pulling the shit he's pulling... at best.
 
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BlaRo

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So "biting the hand that feeds you" counts for "huge balls" in today's day and age?
 

Scott

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Anything substantial to back that claim up?

Substantial? Not really, but I have been a DoD employee for 19 years and I have done my fair share of travelling. I can tell you that the sentiment in every place I have been in the last 18 months is in line with McChrystal's comments.

I don't really seeing as biting the hand that feeds you, his career is well in hand. I see it as him grabbing an opportunity to expose some serious issues that (and this is a guess) have not been dealt with behind the scenes. Things like this tend to get things moving in the right direction, and yeah he might take a bit of an ass chewing for it, but he knew that well in advance.
 

Dogbert

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I see it as him grabbing an opportunity to expose some serious issues that (and this is a guess) have not been dealt with behind the scenes.
But it isn't his place to do that exposing. His place, as a General, is to make recommendations for the best course of action, and carry out the orders of the President. This isn't any good-natured "whistleblowing" action exposing some terrible military injustice, this is just him throwing a tantrum in public that he isn't getting exactly what he wants.

Again, if your boss doesn't listen to some recommendations you make, would your next step be the press? No, because that wouldn't do anything constructive, and probably get you fired. How is this any different?

Things like this tend to get things moving in the right direction, and yeah he might take a bit of an ass chewing for it, but he knew that well in advance.
No, things like this divide the armed forces, and public opinion of the armed forces, which is the last thing a flag officer should be doing. When you have a VP in a company publicly questioning the judgment of the CEO, it not only puts off the employees, but it puts off the shareholders, too.
 
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LeVeL

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He didn't say anything that terrible. Should fall under freedom of speech, no?
 

Cobol74

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He may be 100% correct but as has been said - it's not his job.

It's his job to carry out the requirements/directives of the President and when asked offer options, assessments and resource appreciations and needs to carry out the directives.

I was dissapointed by this bit

"He's in France to sell his new war strategy to our NATO allies ? to keep up the fiction, in essence, that we actually have allies. Since McChrystal took over a year ago, the Afghan war has become the exclusive property of the United States."

Still why am I surprised.
 

Dogbert

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Should fall under freedom of speech, no?
Nobody's saying he said something illegal. He's just saying things unbecoming of someone in the US Military, and definitely unbecoming of a General in said Military.
 

Plissken

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To be perfectly blunt, if Bush was the President, then some of those agreeing with McChrystal now would be telling him to STFU and vice versa.
 

argatoga

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So "biting the hand that feeds you" counts for "huge balls" in today's day and age?
It counts. You don't need to be bright to have huge balls.
 

BlaRo

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I don't really seeing as biting the hand that feeds you, his career is well in hand. I see it as him grabbing an opportunity to expose some serious issues that (and this is a guess) have not been dealt with behind the scenes. Things like this tend to get things moving in the right direction, and yeah he might take a bit of an ass chewing for it, but he knew that well in advance.
Calling everybody in the White House "wimps" isn't exactly getting things moving in the right direction.
 

SpitfireMK461

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I'm pretty sure that if it were an officer any lower in the chain of the command making public derogatory remarks about his higher ups, he'd be discharged or at least reprimanded immediately. For a general to make public remarks of the president is completely out of line, whether you agree with what he has to say or not.
 

British_Rover

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Substantial? Not really, but I have been a DoD employee for 19 years and I have done my fair share of travelling. I can tell you that the sentiment in every place I have been in the last 18 months is in line with McChrystal's comments.

I don't really seeing as biting the hand that feeds you, his career is well in hand. I see it as him grabbing an opportunity to expose some serious issues that (and this is a guess) have not been dealt with behind the scenes. Things like this tend to get things moving in the right direction, and yeah he might take a bit of an ass chewing for it, but he knew that well in advance.

I haven't read the whole article yet as I have been busy all day but the first thing I thought of when I heard this was Truman firing MaCarthur. I don't think McChrystal has been outright insubordinate like MacCarthur but there are similarities. Then again like I said I haven't read the whole article yet and won't be able to till tonight.

http://photoblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2010/06/22/4544188-mcchrystal-macarthur-deja-vu-all-over-again



He didn't say anything that terrible. Should fall under freedom of speech, no?
Man you are dumb sometimes. Oh wait am I still on ignore? I probably am so you won't even read this. When you sign up for the military you gave up certain freedoms and one of them is freedom of speech at least in respect to what you can say about the chain of command and the president specifically.

It's interesting to note at this point that Article 88 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) makes it a crime for commissioned officers to use contemptuous words against the above officeholders. Commissioned officers who violate this provision can be court-martialed for a direct violation of Article 88. But, what about enlisted members and warrant officers?

From a second article.

Fortunately for O'Dell, he's a private - not a "commissioned officer." He can be thankful for his lack of stripes, because there is no way Article 88 can be applied to him without them.

It turns out that O'Dell was wise in his choice of targets as well. For if he had "behaved with disrespect" toward a superior commissioned or non-commissioned officer - from Gen. Tommy Franks down to his own platoon sergeant,. he could have been subject to court martial under Articles 89 and 91 of the UCMJ. These articles apply to all soldiers, including enlisted men and women. But the civilian officials who are specifically protected from criticism in Article 88, including the Secretary of Defense, are not mentioned in Articles 89 and 91.
http://writ.news.findlaw.com/commentary/20030619_falvy.html

http://usmilitary.about.com/cs/militarylaw1/a/milpolitics_2.htm

To be perfectly blunt, if Bush was the President, then some of those agreeing with McChrystal now would be telling him to STFU and vice versa.
They did prosecute officers who spoke out against the war in Iraq publicly.

http://articles.sfgate.com/2007-02-08/news/17229697_1_military-justice-free-speech-ehren-watada

Thats just the first article I found. I have to go now but I am sure there are others.
 

BlaRo

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In his defense, his comment falls right in line with page 2 of the far-right-winger handbook; "agree with anyone who disagrees with Obama".
What's page 1? "When in doubt, trot out FREEDOM OF SPEECH, unless they're against you?"
 

Dogbert

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What's page 1?
The table of contents.




:drums:

I also seem to remember there was a commander in Afghanistan(?) who did much the same thing McChrystal is doing when Bush was in office, and was shuttled away for it, but for the life of me I cannot remember or find his name.
 
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jetsetter

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I haven't read the whole article yet as I have been busy all day but the first thing I thought of when I heard this was Truman firing MaCarthur. I don't think McChrystal has been outright insubordinate like MacCarthur but there are similarities. Then again like I said I haven't read the whole article yet and won't be able to till tonight.
It is not even close.

One of the better pieces I have yet seen on the incident:

General Stanley McChrystal has been stitched up by Rolling Stone
By Adrian Michaels Last updated: June 22nd, 2010

There isn?t very much in the Rolling Stone article requiring an apology from General McChrystal, the man in charge in Afghanistan who has been summoned to the White House. If he does resign, it should not be because of perceived slurs against the White House. They?re not there.

There was a copy of the article available online until recently, which I?ve read, and some excerpts and a news report about it here and here. Basically, the general ? or ?THE RUNAWAY GENERAL? as he is hysterically referred to ? has been the victim of journalist hype. It is the magazine?s editors that call the White House ?wimps?, and it is the author that uses almost every f-word in the piece, gratuitously, gratingly, and not while quoting anyone. The only f-word used by someone else is a Brit saying how much some people love McChrystal?s habit of showing up on patrol.

Let?s be clear: Barack Obama may still want McChrystal to resign. The general gave long, close and after-hours access to a journalist and also apparently made no complaints when Rolling Stone sent him a pre-publication copy. That this represents poor judgment, and that this is not the first instance of his poor judgment, is indisputable.

But of the inflammatory quotations and asides, I think it is safe to say they?re mostly ill-judged wisecracks. One in particular from a McChrystal aide about Joe Biden is specifically meant to be a joke. McChrystal also laughs about not wanting to open an email from Richard Holbrooke, and exhibits a reluctance to have a posh dinner in France. Some aides need to wash their mouths out. That really is about it.

There is very little in the piece that would back up the ?runaway? angle. There is almost no difference in policy mentioned between the army and the White House. McChrystal comes off as one of the few people actually building bridges properly with Afghanistan?s difficult government. And it would hardly be the first time that a general and a president have not got on like a house on fire.

If anything, the case for dismissing McChrystal is strengthened by what the article exposes as his failure to win over the hearts and minds of his own men. There is considerable doubt among ordinary soldiers that counterinsurgency is the right strategy, and their commander does not come out of confrontations with them very well. But for insulting behaviour towards the administration? Look elsewhere.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/adrianmichaels/100044497/general-mcchrystal-has-been-stitched-up/
Dismissing him would be a monumental mistake. Almost as big a mistake as announcing a withdraw date (ie wait until we leave to attack in full date).
 

Dogbert

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Dismissing him would be a monumental mistake.
But letting him get away with this would be politically and morally devastating for Obama, and will assuredly open the gates for this sort of thing to happen again, which is the last thing the military and the White House needs during a war.

I don't care if he didn't say a lot of the things in the article; he let everything in that article be associated with his name. He had prior knowledge of what would be published, and he was okay with all of it. To let those things be associated with his name is something not even a Private should let happen, let alone a four-star General.

He had absolutely no business talking to Rolling Stone in the first place. Period. If he's making these kinds of elementary judgment errors, one has to wonder what else he's fucking up.
 
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jetsetter

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Keeping him would be a sign of strength, a sign that Obama actually cares about the outcome of the conflict. To dismiss him in order to save face is the easy move and could ultimately be the more damaging.
 
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