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The President Versus The General

Updated on May 6, 2011

Obama and McChrystal

Who Was Right?

I have held off commenting on General McChrystal's diatribe in the Rolling Stone article that got him in hot water. I have held off because I have been placed in an uncomfortable position. I actually find myself in the position where I have to defend President Obama's decision to fire the general. McChrystal brought this all on himself. I know this will not sit well with many of my conservative co-horts. But, I can find no way to defend the general on this.

First, I want to make it clear General McChrystal was absolutely correct in stating Obama's Afghanistan strategy is fundamentally flawed. It is causing more and more U.S. troop injuries and deaths due to the rules of engagement (I am gratified to see this is being changed ). The arbitrary deadline to get out of Iraq is detrimental to the troops as well. This emboldens the terrorist insurgency. All they have to do is wait out the Americans. Once they do, they will pounce on the Afghanistan government with zeal. General McChrystal was right in saying the real enemy are the "wimps in the White House. " I applaud the general for allowing Americans to know what is going on in Afghanistan. He did so at his own peril. I don't even have a problem with his aides making derogatory remarks about the amateurs that President Obama has working for him. They all are cut from the same cloth in that they don't have a clue how to carry out a war. All they really know how to do is set deadlines to placate the left-wingers. I assure you, the Taliban can see the hand writing on the wall. They will make this war even more bloody for Americans over the next year. The general is clearly frustrated with this half-assed attempt to win a war from the Obama Administration. I understand and can appreciate his frustration. Many other generals went through this in Vietnam.

Where I must part with General McChrystal is when he criticized his Commander-in-Chief in a magazine. This is something you do behind closed doors, military meetings or in private with your aides. You don't do it publicly. You do not criticize your Commander in Chief to where it makes him appear weak (and make no mistake about it, Obama is a weak president). You have something called "chain of command ." You have a complaint, you go to the next person above you. In this case, it was the President of the United States. General McChrystal knew this. He was a four-star general. He knows the Military Code of Conduct. He also knew the ramifications of his remarks. Some will say he did it out of loyalty to his troops. There is something to be said for this. However, he could have shown even more loyalty by keeping his mouth shut, making his frustrations known to everyone in the White House and continuing on as their Commander in Afghanistan. Instead General McChrystal took the path of least resistance. He acted almost juvenile in his remarks about his civilian bosses. He has dishonored himself. He has dishonored the Office of the President of the United States.

It is apparent General McChrystal has no respect for Obama. I don't blame him. I don't have any respect for Obama either. But, I do respect his position as President of the United States. I am completely opposed to everything Obama is doing both domestically and internationally. I can't think of one thing I can agree with the President about. Well, except for one thing; we both agree that General McChrystal had to go. When I was in the U.S. Navy, one thing I detested was saluting officers. I just didn't like it. So, I told an old Chief Petty Officer about my feelings. I'll never forget what he told me. "You are not saluting the man wearing that uniform. You are saluting the uniform that man is wearing. You damn well better respect that." He was right. You respect what that uniform represents. General McChrystal should have known that also. Although the President of the United States does not wear a uniform, he does hold a position that General McChrystal should have respected. That, more than any other single thing, is what got him fired. Obama is thin-skinned as I have stated on another hub. He was not going to let that kind of criticism go without action. So, the general was fired. Basically, he was fired for insubordination. What do you think General McChrystal would have done if a subordinate had criticized him publicly? Exactly.

Save this hub for posterity's sake. I doubt you will ever see me defend the Anointed One again. Now, I feel like I need to go take a shower.


Submit a Comment

  • Writer David profile imageAUTHOR

    Writer David 

    8 years ago from Mobile, AL

    HJ, are you being sarcastic? If not, read my post again, please.

    If you read my post, you will see where I actually agree with what Obama did...this time.

  • Hi-Jinks profile image


    8 years ago from Wisconsin

    Who are you fighting in the malls and all?

    Look up Gen Sherman and his views on reporters. McChrystal should have known.

  • Writer David profile imageAUTHOR

    Writer David 

    8 years ago from Mobile, AL

    Hi-Jinks, you are back!

    I wasn't aware General McChrystal revealed secrets. Where are you getting this?

    The president is in charge of bankrupting America. Everything else is gravy to him.

    Out of both countries? That's a good plan. Let's fight them in our malls and interstate highways instead.

  • Hi-Jinks profile image


    8 years ago from Wisconsin

    The General never learned that Loose lips sink ship?

    The President IS in charge.

    I personally would be out of both countries.

  • Writer David profile imageAUTHOR

    Writer David 

    8 years ago from Mobile, AL

    Tom, if your theory is correct, then the general did a bang up job of doing it. I suspect now that he is no longer under the thumb of Obama, he will let his real feeling known in either another magazine or maybe he will write a book.

  • tom hellert profile image

    tom hellert 

    8 years ago from home

    Ok, here it is this is what mccrystal was doing, Wea re all agreed oBama can't hold Stans jock as a general or as a man that is for sure. stan knew what he was doing- I agree with David Stan was wrong but- if you WANT to get FIRED, how could you go about doing it while letting everyone know your true feelings- you go to a radical leftist mag and bbad mouth your boss. David is correct in this case the truth does not make it right- remember you are talking about a long and highly decorated bona-Who was sick of being told what to do by a do nothing , know nothing, community organizer. I think Stan did it on purpose and when he went to OBamas office he had his resignation all ready for him. Thats why it took him 10 minutes he walked in listened to Lil Barry say a few things and when Barry started in after a little bit again he took out his resignation letter and said "I will not appologize to you because you have no clue hoe to run a war and I will not allow my men to be handcuffed like this - this is the second time we have met You cannot run a war from behind your desk sir, unless you change your tactics and allow us soldiers to do OUR JOB- I will resign", Allowing Barry to save a little face and still get his point across.

    I do not think it was right for Stan to bad mouth Barry but I think he did it to openly make sure his troops knew the real deal. 10 MINUTES i'VE HEARD STANIS A DECISIVE LEADER he did not do this on a whim. He knew exactly what he wanted to do get more help or get his message out and resign....Barry chose the latter over doing what was right.

  • Writer David profile imageAUTHOR

    Writer David 

    8 years ago from Mobile, AL

    eovery, vrajavala and fitnezzJim

    Just because Obama has no regard for the rule of law, the U.S. Constitution, why should we do the same? What makes us different in this scenario? vra, I'm not getting into that birther stuff. The time to fight that battle was during the campaign of 2008. Now, for some reason, people want to fight that battle AFTER Obama takes office. It seems disingenuous to me.

    The bottom line was my final question in this post. If General McChrystal had been publicly criticized by a subordinate over his ability to fight this war, what would he have done? He would have either demoted, court marshaled or fired the man or woman who did this. Surely everyone can agree on this.

  • vrajavala profile image


    8 years ago from Port St. Lucie

    the only problem with this scene is that Obama was born a British subject and, is hence, ineligible to serve as President.

  • FitnezzJim profile image


    8 years ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia

    Perpsectives, it's all about perspectives. I sort of like Ghost32's perspective on this one.

  • eovery profile image


    8 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

    Well, this has gotten interesting. Yes Bid BO showed everyone who's boss. Yeah, BO is the boss.

    And with this, he put Petreaus in charge, which shows the Bush was right with his decisions, and Petreaus it the man.

    It also shows how BO is thin skin and can't take any criticism.

    Also, the fact that a liberal magazine, like rolling stone is turning on BO. Who cares what Rolling Stone wrote, and also who puts much validation in that magazine.

    Beside, nothing was said that the rest of the country is saying. Maybe he will fire us.

    Keep on hubbing!


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