June 22nd, 2010
09:59 AM ET

Excerpts from Rolling Stone article on Gen. McChrystal

Excerpts from a Rolling Stone magazine profile on Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, set to appear Friday:

- "Even though he had voted for (President Barack) Obama, McChrystal and his new commander-in-chief failed from the outset to connect. The general first encountered Obama a week after he took office, when the president met with a dozen senior military officials in a room at the Pentagon known as the Tank. According to sources familiar with the meeting, McChrystal thought Obama looked "uncomfortable and intimidated" by the roomful of military brass. Their first one-on-one meeting took place in the Oval Office four months later, after McChrystal got the Afghanistan job, and it didn't go much better. 'It was a 10-minute photo-op,' says an adviser to McChrystal. 'Obama clearly didn't know anything about him, who he was. Here's the guy who's going to run his f-ing war, but he didn't seem very engaged. The Boss was pretty disappointed.'"

Read full Rolling Stone article

- "Last fall, during a question-and-answer session following a speech he gave in London, McChrystal dismissed the counterterrorism strategy being advocated by Vice President Joe Biden as 'shortsighted,' saying it would lead to a state of 'Chaos-istan,' The remarks earned him a smackdown from the president himself, who summoned the general to a terse private meeting aboard Air Force One. The message to McChrystal seemed clear: Shut the f- up, and keep a lower profile. Now, flipping through printout cards of his speech in Paris, McChrystal wonders aloud what Biden question he might get today, and how he should respond. 'I never know what's going to pop out until I'm up there, that's the problem,' he says.

Then, unable to help themselves, he and his staff imagine the general dismissing the vice president with a good one-liner. 'Are you asking about Vice President Biden?' McChrystal says with a laugh. 'Who's that?' 'Biden?' suggests a top adviser. 'Did you say "Bite Me?"'

- "In private, Team McChrystal likes to talk s- about many of Obama's top people on the diplomatic side. One aide calls Jim Jones, a retired four-star general and veteran of the Cold War, a 'clown' who remains 'stuck in 1985.' Politicians like (John) McCain and (John) Kerry, says another aide, 'turn up, have a meeting with (Afghan president Hamid) Karzai, criticize him at the airport press conference, then get back for the Sunday talk shows. Frankly, it's not very helpful.' Only (Secretary of State) Hillary Clinton receives good reviews from McChrystal's inner circle. 'Hillary had Stan's back during the strategic review,' says an adviser. 'She said, "If Stan wants it, give him what he needs.'"

- "McChrystal reserves special skepticism for (Richard) Holbrooke, the official in charge of reintegrating the Taliban. 'The Boss says he's like a wounded animal,' says a member of the general's team. 'Holbrooke keeps hearing rumors that he's going to get fired, so that makes him dangerous. He's a brilliant guy, but he just comes in, pulls on a lever, whatever he can grasp onto. But this is COIN (counterinsurgency), and you can't just have someone yanking on s-.'"

- "By far the most crucial - and strained - relationship is between McChrystal and (Karl) Eikenberry, the U.S. ambassador. According to those close to the two men, Eikenberry - a retired three-star general who served in Afghanistan in 2002 and 2005 - can't stand that his former subordinate is now calling the shots. He's also furious that McChrystal, backed by NATO's allies, refused to put Eikenberry in the pivotal role of viceroy in Afghanistan, which would have made him the diplomatic equivalent of the general.

"... The relationship was further strained in January, when a classified cable that Eikenberry wrote was leaked to The New York Times. The cable was as scathing as it was prescient. The ambassador offered a brutal critique of McChrystal's strategy, dismissed President Hamid Karzai as 'not an adequate strategic partner,' and cast doubt on whether the counterinsurgency plan would be 'sufficient' to deal with al Qaeda. ... McChrystal and his team were blindsided by the cable. 'I like Karl, I've known him for years, but they'd never said anything like that to us before,' says McChrystal, who adds that he felt 'betrayed' by the leak. 'Here's one that covers his flank for the history books. Now if we fail, they can say, 'I told you so.'"

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  1. karl

    McChrystal should be fired and stripped of all his benefits. Who does he think he is? Obviously he wants to see this administation fail so his heart is not into his job and he is costing dearly in this war. McChrystal you should be fired!

    June 22, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  2. PHAN

    Obama can't fake it with a table full of generals and McCrystal called him out.. im not surprised. obama needs alot more than a teleprompter to survive in that room.

    June 22, 2010 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grafixer

      "Called him out"? With what? Childish emotional remarks? He doesn't like Obama. That's all it is. It isn't like he made any factual allegations. He just had a wild and childish gossip session with a paper. He should be fired for his lack of integrity. He's a dangerous man to have in charge of our troup's lives... with anger and bitterness like that. Scary. He needs to be fired – along with any and all of his followers that were not strong enough to stand on their own two feet.

      June 22, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • PHAN

      "Called him out"? With what?

      on being a fraud. he voted for obama. after a war room meeting he' walkout and felt like this guy doesnt have the first clue along with the vice president. mcchrystal is over there. the see's it, lives it, and commands troops on the ground. I dont think it was smart for mccchrystal to publicly make these comments but you can see how frustrated he's become.. and obamas lack of response. its freedom of speech. id figure all you liberals to care about that at least and not wiretaps. a war tactic.

      June 22, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • dc

      The General has resigned. His behavior and his minions' behaviors are subject to the UCMJ (military's version of the law); and according to Article 88 (Contempt Towards Officials); and according to the news reported, the General and his underlings violated the UCMJ rule and, thus, could have been punished by court-martial or garnishment of wages.

      June 23, 2010 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jim

    He's right. Obama and his pukey staff are a bunch of wimps. Thanks for confirming what we already knew. It's hard to do your job, when your bosses, don't know what they're doing. So Obama and his dolts are the only one's who can call people names? What a joke. Good job General!

    June 22, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  4. freedom4u

    As unfortunate as these wars are, and how much I wish that they would have not been started or wish they would end, my thought is that, our men and women are fighting in these countries they know first hand what is going on, they know first hand what they need to get their mission done, they know first hand the horrors of the war... Our 'leaders" do not, they go and visit, they listen to what the generals tell them, but they do not know anything. They sit in the airconditioned offices and make or DONT make decisions that affect the lives of our men and women. In my opinion they should either give them the tools and supplies they need to do their jobs effectively, and if they cannot they need to pull them out of these countries and stop wasting lives. We could use each and everyone of our service men and women home on the homefront. This president has no clue on how to run this show, whether it comes to the economy , the wars in Iraq or Afganistan, or even the oil spill............... I dont expect him to do anything personally about it, but he does how the power to make some very important decisions that could benefit all... he just doesnt know how to do or what to do, and those who do know what should be done, or are trying to help to get "something" done aren't given the time of day..........just my humble opinion.thanks.

    June 22, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Doug

    Feedom of Speech??? Hello

    June 22, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grafixer

      Freedom of Speech does not mean emotional gossip sessions about how you FEEL about the President or Vice President. If the General was stating facts, and exposing something of importance – like torturing inmates at Guantanamo, or handing non-bid contracts to the VP's company, or illegal wiretapping... That would be different. This was just childish nonsense. He, and anyone that followed him, should be fired immediately.

      June 22, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • ras65

      Freedom of Speech in the military, are you nuts! There is no such thing. I remember exercising my freedom freedom of speech to my superiors and ended up being reprimanded and extra duty. Same of the officers. I do not understand most of these comments that say the General is just speaking his mind. The military is held to a Higher Standard then civilian standards. Whether you agree with Obama or not, this is unacceptable for a High Ranking Military General.

      June 22, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. down n da bayou

    all you ppl talking about the oil spill never seen an oil rig in thier life. if you don't know what a b.o.p. valve, hanger or pump in sub is, how can you give input on how its bush fault. it's B.P.'s fault. but its not the governments job to hand out B.P.s $. that is a pvt. company. but we both know obama is in bed with B.P. that is why b.p. is the only company drilling in the gulf right now. forgot B.P. gave obama a million.you will lern.

    June 22, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grafixer

      Get your facts straight. BP gave Obama 75,000 – not a million. It is a small donation in comparison to other corporate donations. The drill rights for the rig that blew up were established by the Bush adminstration – not the current admin. Geesh! You people will make up anything to try to bash Obama and make yourselves feel better about having driving this country into economic ruin. Get your facts straight.

      June 22, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  7. eddale

    As a military retiree of over twenty six years I'm shocked at McChrystle's comments. Even a person in basic training knows better than to do what the general has been reported as saying. President Obama has no option but to fire him immediately. If he doesn't he will lose respect throughout the armed forces and the military of all our allies.

    June 22, 2010 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  8. down n da bayou

    well if it will take him that long. it will not get done. you Cant find enough dummies in the world who would ellect him again

    June 22, 2010 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grafixer

      downda... It took two terms destroy the economy, and over a decade to send it toward that toilet. It took more than one term to get us into a war under false pretenses. It took more than a decade to deregulate the oil industry, banks and Wall Street. It will take more than one term to fix it all. I think most Americans are smart enough to see how we got into this mess, and they will try their best to elect someone that won't take us back to those same narrow-minded and ignorant methods. I guess everyone has a circle of people around them that share their views. It is sad that some can't see the forest for the trees here.

      June 22, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      You have spoken the truth brother. It took well over a decade to foul this all up. And it takes decades to get it right again.So let’s give thanks the guy who really started the snowball down the hill. The guy who had Bin-Laden in gun sights years before 9/11, and let him go. The guy whose policies were the seed of the Housing crash. The guy who failed in Somalia. The guy who did nothing after the first WTC bombing.... I could go on.
      Thank you, Pres William J Clinton.
      Hey if we wanna blame past Presidents for current problems, let’s get the name right ok?

      June 22, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Seth Hill

    I like this guy General McChrystal, he's outspoken and honest. When the military answers to elected civilians, of course there will be lots of tension and clashing opinions. That's why our democracy works so well! In some other countries I won't name, the military just runs the country, and then everyone (except the poor people living there) happily agrees.

    June 22, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  10. jonnyjustcom

    Did I did get this right? The president is the "guy" and McChristal is the Boss? What sort of command does this General run in that place?

    June 22, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Jaimondrow

    What? Every bad quote is from a McChrystal staff member or advisor or member of his inner circle... Where's the quote where McChrystal bashes his commander in chief??

    June 22, 2010 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Suval

    The General needs to be fired NOW. As a General,he knows he needs to show respect for his Commander-in Chief no matter what he thinks of the President. In the genral's case, he bad mouthed everyone but himself and the Sec of State .It was in poor taste and worse yet,it shows poor judgment. I do not think we want someone with such poor judgment and such a big ego running a war where our men and women are dying daily. They come first,not the General's ego or his dislike of his Boss.

    June 22, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  13. down n da bayou

    if you cant see the fact that obama is destroying this country you are beyond hope.

    June 22, 2010 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • dc

      Fact? What the hell are you talking about? Explain to me what you mean.

      June 23, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  14. AC

    Completely out of line by McChrystal, although mostly true, he is not the first high profile general to display his ego and second guess his superiors (Patton, Pershing, MacArthur, Westmoreland, etc.). It does seem like most of these quotes are attributed through inside sources and not from McChrystal himself. He needs to be more careful, but if he is a very good General he will survive like the others, until he pushes it too far.

    June 22, 2010 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
  15. down n da bayou

    i live in louisiana and i work as a production mngr. i been in the oil field since 1996. so unless you know Anything about it... STFU! BUSH Been out long enough. NEWSFLASH! we have a new pres. Stop blaming bush for obamas bleep-UPS!

    June 22, 2010 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
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