General’s resignation unnecessary
Who says print media is irrelevant and on the decline? All it takes to catch the attention of the president of the United States and influence the resignation of the highest ranking general in the Afghanistan War is a well-written piece of journalism in Rolling Stone magazine.
After reading the entire article, ‘A Runaway General’ by Michael Hastings, centered on Gen. Stanley McChrystal, I couldn’t help but be left wondering what the big deal was.
Sure, it brought us up-close and personal with the general and gave us insight into his life we never would have seen without Hastings’ piece. The profile of the general did seem more like something that would be, and probably should have been, written or, at least, released after his retirement.
The only derogatory comment ‘ the one that has been mentioned as the main reason for the pressure on McChrystal to resign ‘ was not even made by the general. One of his top advisers referred to Vice President Joe Biden as ‘Bite Me.’ McChrystal told Hastings that he came away unimpressed and was disappointed after his first meeting with President Barack Obama.
But to force a resignation out of such a well-respected and high-ranking general seems a punishment unfit for the lack of a crime. If the president’s administration reprimands anyone who is disappointed or makes a rude remark directed at the administration, then they’ll be too busy to ever get anything else accomplished.
It could even be seen as ‘un-presidential’ for Obama to respond to every single knock or criticism. Obama should take a page from his predecessor’s book and keep his head down and do what he thinks is right, even amid considerable criticism and plummeting approval ratings.
McChrystal last week apologized for the profile and that should have been that. It’s not like McChrystal openly disagreed with the president’s strategy in the war. We’re talking about someone who voted for Obama in the 2008 general election and was implementing a war strategy approved by the president. Obama even said the strategy will not change after McChrystal’s resignation.
At such a crucial juncture in the war, now is not the time to shuffle staff. Instead, stability from the commander-in-chief on down is essential.
From most accounts of McChrystal, including Hastings’, there’s no doubt the general was good at what he did. It’s a shame all that had to come to an end because of a few misguided comments.