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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Time for Obama to Lead or Leave

That should be the headline of the day.

Barack Obama has just announced that Gen. Stanley McChrystal has been relieved of command in Afghanistan based on an article in Rolling Stone which barely quoted McChrystal, but did include numerous inflammatory remarks by anonymous staffers and third-party commentators.

The Rolling Stone article was a hatchet job to create the impression that McChrystal was doing the criticizing.

But as I demonstrated yesterday, almost no quotes were attributed to McChrystal.

By firing McChrystal based on the Rolling Stone article, Obama has handed over control of the Afghan war to left-wing tabloids which happen to get close enough to a commander that they can weave a sensational story based on almost nothing.

Obama has replaced McChrystal with Gen. David Petraeus, who was lampooned by Obama's base as General Betray Us when Petraeus was Bush's chosen military leader.

The McChrystal discharge, even if you believe it was warranted on the merits, reflects a deeper problem of a Commander in Chief who has not earned the respect of the military at a crucial time in the Afghanistan war.

Starting with the delayed decision making process, and then the arbitrary political deadline Obama set last fall for withdrawal from Afghanistan, Obama has sown confusion in the ranks.

It's time for Obama to lead, or to leave.

Related Posts:
Now They're Just Starting to Ask Questions About Afghanistan?
Why Isn't The Troops' Urgency Fierce Now?
Someone Tell The Dawdler-in-Chief This Is Not A Term Paper

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  1. President Destroy America would never even contemplate that anything was his fault so no resignation and unfortunately we are then stuck with him until 2012. I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that the more problematic issue here is that the military has no respect for their commander-in-chief. Not really a good way to run a war.

  2. With General David Petraeus, a Bush appointee, coming back online, we will no doubt move away from the scene in Afghanistan is all Bush's fault and toward a position that it is McChrystal's fault that the war has gone badly because he did not execute the Obama strategy correctly or something. The smell of dead rats permeates Washington today.

  3. I'm old enough to be reminded of the Jimmy Carter days.
    Everything was the fault of the US, and US Imperialism and the US Military.
    Until Iran took the hostages. Then, suddenly, it was necessary to rev up the dreaded US military for a helicopter rescue mission. Because of course the US military was an unstoppable force. Except it wasn't, at least not anymore, due to Carter's conscious diminishment of capabilities.

  4. When I heard about McChrystal getting into the trouble, I immediately remembered all the reports of his incompetence that Michael Yon posted. Obama is doing the right thing relieving McChrystal. He should have done that back in the days of that bridge.

  5. This story kind of reminds me of Princess Diana allowing her friends to tell all to a biographer in order for her to get her story out. It was big gossipy news about the people's princess at the time. It think, though, Diana was already fired as the legal princess.

    I don't know if Obama is doing the right thing or not, but just finished reading an archieved article from Time magazine (April 23, 1951) and it was really interesting concerning the MacArthur vs Truman battle. The article describes what is a similar relationship between president and general today; one with a clear vision and not shy about stating what it is, and the other fairly ambiguous.

    Well worth the read if you have a few minutes because it is an archived article and reads as if the events are in present time.

  6. There are two sides to the story. First off military officers are not allowed to criticise the CIC even if it is warranted. I agree that the RS article was an hatchet-job. However, McChrystal should not have had the "journalist" at that dinner.

    Second, all criticism of the failure in chief is warranted. I also agree that there is good reason to criticize McChrystal, but let's face it, Obummer refused to talk with him and refused to make a decision... instead he dithered for months on end.. it is stupid to call that dithering a cool attitude... it was not... McChrystal has not been fairly treated over the matter.