Sunday, October 4, 2009

Obama and McChrystal in Copenhagen

That famous "25 minute conference" between Obama and McChrystal: Was that a dressing down from the CinC?

UK Telegraph: The relationship between President Barack Obama and the commander of Nato forces in Afghanistan has been put under severe strain by Gen Stanley McChrystal's comments on strategy for the war.

According to sources close to the administration, Gen McChrystal shocked and angered presidential advisers with the bluntness of a speech given in London last week.

The next day he was summoned to an awkward 25-minute face-to-face meeting on board Air Force One on the tarmac in Copenhagen, where the president had arrived to tout Chicago's unsuccessful Olympic bid.

So, Obama meets with his top commander in the field for only the second time in as many months or more, but was it to tell him to STFU?

...In London, Gen McChrystal, who heads the 68,000 US troops in Afghanistan as well as the 100,000 Nato forces, flatly rejected proposals to switch to a strategy more reliant on drone missile strikes and special forces operations against al-Qaeda.

He told the Institute of International and Strategic Studies that the formula, which is favoured by Vice-President Joe Biden, would lead to "Chaos-istan".

When asked whether he would support it, he said: "The short answer is: No."

He went on to say: "Waiting does not prolong a favorable outcome. This effort will not remain winnable indefinitely, and nor will public support."

The remarks have been seen by some in the Obama administration as a barbed reference to the slow pace of debate within the White House.

Given their relative levels of military experience, I would tend to support the judgment of General McChrystal over that of the Ditherer-in-Chief.

On a possibly related note, Move-On dot org is circulating a petition for " a clear military exit strategy". Not victory and an exit strategy. Not eliminate bin Laden or Al-Qaeda and exit, just cut and run. *Sigh.*

Hat tip Weasel Zippers
Cross posted at Say Anything


  1. The right wing is positively giddy that the United States will not be hosting the Olympics. Seriously, has it dawned on you yet how utterly despicable these people are? I was just wonderin'.

    The main goal of the GOP these days is to insure that President Obama's administration is a complete and utter failure. They want to see as many Americans as possible suffer in the next three years, thus, ensuring that they will be able to seize control of the executive branch in 2013. If the president succeeds in making life better for his countrymen and women, they fail. It's as simple as that. Mitch McConnell, to his credit, always looks quite uncomfortable when he is forced to justify policies as atrocious as those being put forward these days by that hideous party. But Cantor always has a serene, angelic smile on his face whenever he is forced to defend the morally indefensible - sort of like last week, at a Town Hall meeting when he told a woman whose mortally ill relative had been left bankrupt by her medical bills that she should rely on charity. He seemed so content with himself. Quite strange really.

    Tom Degan
    Goshen, NY

  2. Tom: May I suggest...decaf! What is "quite strange" is that you didn't appear to have read this article before commenting. This has nothing of "giddyness" about the Olympics, this is about the sorry state of affairs regarding the conduct of our Commander in Chief in time of war.

    Or do you just spam your "daily rants" wherever you go?

    I was just wonderin'.


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