Posted by: James Atticus Bowden | June 22, 2010

GEN Stanley McChrsytal

I read the Rolling Stones article about GEN McChrystal on line.   Enjoyed the laughs all the way through.  I don’t know this guy – he is 4 years younger than me – but I have known guys like him and his staff.   Good guys who shouldn’t be around the media.  Really.

And, if McChrystal is dumb enough to vote for Obama, then he is probably stupid enough to mouth off and let his staff yap to a Rolling Stone reporter.  So it goes.

The serious aspect of this contretemps is the campaign in Afghanistan.   Obama announced our start to go home date.  His legacy as Commander-in-Chief is “we quit.”   Doesn’t quite have the sense of national shame as “We surrender.”    But, that is for domestic consumption only.   It doesn’t matter to our enemies.   You can tell our enemies know the difference between victory and defeat.   Visit the Vietnamese war museum in Hanoi.

McChrystal was stuck with a no-win political strategy.  No operational victory can overturn political surrender.  Ask the French soldiers who won a war in Algeria and lost it in France.

So, Obama will cut and run.   A new President can re-establish American power.  It may cost extra blood and treasure for some extra testing from the tinhorn dictators in the future.   More folly paid in full by young Americans, like the foolishness of Rumsfeld’s mismanagement of the Iraq War.   And, Bush’s folly about bringing democracy to Iraq and Afghanistan.

‘Stability and Security’  were worthy foreign policy goals after regime change in both theaters.   Too bad they weren’t national policy – however difficult it is to articulate how they work in America, the West and the World’s interests.

The other serious aspect to this comedy is what message the Chicago Thugocracy might try to send to the General Officers.   If it goes beyond, “keep your mouth shut,”   there could be implications to pave the way for any future misuse of power.   We’ll see what the message is – and who replaces McChrystal.

Closing with a digression, I laughed all the more that Stan McChrystal was the managing editor of The Pointer.  So, was I.   What a hoot.



  1. i agree. If he was dumb enough to vote for Obama then I question his character and am not surprised it worked out this way. I hear Petraeus is being “demoted” from CENTCOM to replace him. I find that hard to believe, but would save Obama’s face and he then would become the scapegoat they can blame for their policy failures.
    Sad to see good officers who were assigned to work for McCrystal may have been poorly led. Hopefully the good ones didn’t learn too many bad habits.

    Another thought is that McCrystal may have been smarter than this and this may have been deliberate so that he would avoid the historical fate of Westmoreland.

    The tragedy is the many dead and wounded soldiers wasted in this half hearted campaign. More so for those yet to die.

    • Concur, as usual. A number of my classmates who are retired generals are doctrinaire libs. Easy to do for any person in an elite position.

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