DoD inquiry clears McChrystal, for the record

DoD inquiry clears McChrystal, for the record

DoD has released the results of its latest official inquiry into last year’s Rolling Stone profile that terminated the career of Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal — you can read it yourself online here. (pdf) Not surprisingly, the headline is that DoD’s Inspector General couldn’t substantiate many of the events and quotes from the Rolling Stone story. The response of reporter Michael Hastings will probably be: Of course not. Why would my super high-powered mega-sources admit saying those unflattering things to their own chain of command? This was a pre-stalemate even before the investigation hit the ground.

Hastings is widely loathed inside the Pentagon and divisive among reporters on the defense beat. When he spoke to a military journalists’ conference in Washington last year, it was a very tense session; he was by turns condescending, defensive, nervous and aggressive when questioned by some of the top players in the game. Hastings believes that Washington reporters are lapdogs, afraid to endanger their cozy relationships with officialdom, and as such they were jealous an outsider like him could drop such a bombshell as the McChrystal story. For their part, some reporters believe Hastings makes stuff up, or at least plays fast and loose, and has so poisoned the reputation of all reporters in the eyes of military officials that he makes things harder for responsible journalists.

Monday’s DoD report isn’t first time the Pentagon has officially contradicted a Hastings story. When he wrote his profile of Gen. David Petraeus earlier this year, which portrayed Afghanistan as a chaotic lost cause where villains and scoundrels are waiting to take over, Hastings described a “draft report” that called for ending the war by splitting Afghanistan into sections run by local warlords. “Sources close to Gates say he reacted ‘positively’ to the plan,” Hastings wrote. But Pentagon spokesman Col. Dave Lapan, who also said he was the “Pentagon spokesman” quoted in Hastings story, said he knew of no such report and had recommended Hastings not include that detail because no one in DoD could confirm it.

Then there was Hastings’ most recent big splash, his outrageous report that the Army was using “psychological operations” to “brainwash” visiting VIPs in Afghanistan, based on the account of a single reservist who later denied it. Officials inside DoD fumed at the report, but by the time it came along they’d learned their lesson, and sat back as it played itself out in Washington. An investigation into the “brainwashing” story is quietly underway in Afghanistan, and as with today’s report, the Pentagon undoubtedly hopes it will damage Hastings even further.

The problem is, even though this document will make the people in the plush offices of the E-Ring feel better, there is a wide audience that will never believe anything the Pentagon says — especially if it contradicts Hastings’ narrative that Afghanistan is lost and that the only way the evil military can keep it going it is with deception and “psy-ops.” Not only that, the damage, as it were, is done: Although McChrystal is back in the good graces of the Obama administration, heading up a new panel, he nonetheless lost his command in disgrace and left the Army.

Should the White House have waited for an investigation like this before taking action against McChrystal?

Join the Conversation

The man child prezidnet barry and “bite me” have some splaining to do.…

Hastings is a hero he dares to expose the military leadership as men without honor. Men who will say anything, do anything and tell any lie to further their carriers.

In their press releases they always claim to be warriors but the reality is that they are just tired kick down suck up middle managers who cant even win a war against a bunch of farmers.

“Should the White House have waited for an investigation like this before taking action against McChrystal?”

I look forward to the “Sherrod-McChrystal People Who Got Screwed By Administration Overreaction” tour.

“Should the White House have waited for an investigation like this before taking action against McChrystal?” NO. McChrystal was stupid and he knew it. That’s why he made his “sincerest apology” and he tendered his resignation. Why on earth would a 4 Star General let Rolling Stones Hasting’s have that much access? Cripes, he gave Hastings more time than troops in his own command. Equally stupid is Obama, who barely met with McChrystal, which justifiablly pissed Stan off. We need new leaders with a better grasp of national priorities. Too bad this year isn’t an election year.

It wasn’t too long before McC got canned that he was in a Video on this very site (DOD) where he was giving a briefing and had the B@!!s to call NATO “the money masters” that would “allow” him to expand ops in theater.

This is seemingly contradictory to what MSN is saying about NATO falling apart without US “military” support in Libya. Get it now, like pharaoh whipping the slaves to build his pyramid? Or, more bluntly, follow the power. Or, for the average Joe — they can’t build their New World Order without US taxpayer support.

Pull the plug~!

Why on earth would General McChrystal talk to a schizophrenic reporter like this to begin with?

The farmers are too busy growing drugs to actually fight on either side Oblat. Your beloved Taliban is nothing but a power hungry, fundamentalist, drug cartel.

That’s a bit racist there, Sarah.

You’re clearly a know-nothing about our troops and combat leaders on the ground. Plus, you comment shows ignorance about counter-insurgency warfare, and its challenges. “Farmers” have been formidable opponents for centuries, from the Greeks up to the “farmers” that opposed the Brits at Concord. It’s a tough fight, which takes both commitment, ingenuity and luck.

McChrystal lied about Pat Tillman, would McChrystal tolerate that from a subordinate?
Neither the Army nor the country was well served by his actions.


Oh no that scary ‘racism’ fallback response. Have you heard of barrys GD america pastor?

Now the gutless generals are saying it didn’t happen.

McChrystal is and was a Waste of humanity. To much time at West Point!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Loooooser

Many American soldiers are famers before and after they serve. I don’t know where you are getting the “crack heads” garbage.

@William C.
Well said.

Ego. He has a big ego.

A vetted and informed opinion formed from your extensive battlefield experiences, no doubt.

Men who will say anything? As opposed to what, an alleged reporter who will write anything, regardless of whether or not it“s true?

No, my brother and brother in-law’s informed opinion based on their extensive battlefield experience.

Wait are you one of the crack heads that Oblat is talking about?


The real problem is politicians who know nothing about the deployment of forces telling a general how to conduct it. If your deplomacy doesn’t work and you see fit to call in the Military, get the H*** out of the way and let them get it done. People do not realize the the Military is considered an insturment of That national Policy. You non Military folks may not understand what I just said.

“men who will say anything, do anything and tell any lie to further their carriers [sic]” — your words, not mine; but, I guess you can lump Hastings in that catagory too — that is, if you’re trying to call it the way it is.

“Men who will say anything, do anything and tell any lie to further their carriers.”

That only applies to Navy people — the other branches don’t have aircraft carriers.

Or did you mean careers?







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