telling secrets to the one [magazine] you don’t tell secrets to

Apparently General Stanley A. McChrystal has never seen Almost Famous. If he had, he would know that journalists are the enemy. But since he hasn’t, he is on his way to Washington from Kabul to personally explain to Obama why an article in a recent issue of Rolling Stone has him and his staff  deriding “the national security team with locker-room bravado.”

Some of the articles “highlights” are:

-When…McChrystal and his staff have the journalist accompany them to a pub in Paris where they proceed to get tipsy (no jumping off the roof of a house into a swimming pool while on acid though) and sing a beautiful rendition of a song they wrote about Afghanistan. Here’s how it goes: “‘Afghanistan!” they bellow. ‘Afghanistan!'” …that’s the whole song.

-When…you find out that McChrystal and his staff call themselves “Team America.” Yup, because of the film.

-When…the article has a quote from a McChrystal aide calling “Jim Jones, a retired four-star general and veteran of the Cold War, a ‘clown’ who remains ‘stuck in 1985.”‘

-When…the following commentary is provided regarding McChrystal having to go to dinner in Paris:

“Who’s he going to dinner with?” I ask one of his aides. “Some French minister,” the aide tells me. “It’s fucking gay.”

-When…McChrystal and his gang joke about how to dismiss questions asked about Vice President Joe Biden:

“Are you asking about Vice President Biden?” McChrystal says with a laugh. “Who’s that?”  “Biden?” suggests a top adviser. “Did you say: Bite Me?”

-When…you read the title of the article: “The Runaway General: Stanley McChrystal, Obama’s top commander in Afghanistan, has seized control of the white house by never taking his eye off the real enemy: The wimps in the White House.”

Uh-oh. So we’ll have to see what happens after Obama interviews McChrystal. Maybe he’ll go back to Afghanistan, or maybe he’ll be on the next flight to Morocco.

Here is “The Runaway General”

Here is “Magazine profile captures unguarded moments of top general, staff”

Here is “Article Prompts Speculation About McChrystal’s Future”

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7 Comments on “telling secrets to the one [magazine] you don’t tell secrets to”

  1. Lime Says:

    Couple of follow up links for you:
    Here’s an article arguing this is actually part of a larger problem with the Obama administration.

    And here’s somebody pointing out that Lady Gaga is the real victim.

  2. Here’s a link to a conversation between the journalist that wrote the Rolling Stone article, Michael Hastings, and Diane Sawyer. Hastings calls the openness that McChrystal had with him part of the “natural kind of recklessness” that has followed McChrystal throughout his career.

    And here’s the front-page of the Stars and Stripes, under the headline of “A General’s Contempt.”

    AND here’s a summary of what the media has been saying…my favorite comes from Jon Stewart – “I may be a four-star general and you may be a reporter for some hippie magazine, but I feel like I can trust you.”

  3. …and what becomes clear when you read the article (or even the highlights above) is that it isn’t McChrystal himself that is responsible for the controversial comments – it’s his aides. AIDES AIDES AIDES. Even if McChrystal (who did give Hastings access to his aides in a manner equivalent to secrets running out of band members’ mouths while their plane is about to crash) isn’t given the boot by Obama, I reckon there will still be a pretty big shake up in “Team America.”

  4. Lime Says:

    Here’s an article that makes an interesting point, though I think it hurts itself a bit by being so emphatically anti-Obama. Basically the guy says that Obama’s decision to officially make David Petraeus the new commander in Afghanistan while simultaneously keeping him as the head of the USCENTCOM is essentially just handing off responsibility for the choice of the Afghanistan commander to Petraeus, because Petraeus can clearly not do both jobs at once and will therefore have to delegate McChrystal’s old job to a subordinate.

  5. Vijayaputra Says:

    Wow… is it just me, but does this whole McChrystal thing just stinks of being one of those media-inflated incidents that highbrow New Yorker types relish over-analyzing and deriving grand-sweeping conclusions from? I mean really, who is going to care about what a General with a lack of tact (or manners clearly) said to the Rolling Stones magazine in a few months, let along years?

    Also Lime, two things: First, I think you ought to reconsider relying on a blatantly neo-Conservative rightwing e-news article when attempting to critique the Obama administration. Secondly, I think this article puts it into perspective just what kind of challenges the Obama administration is facing that critics (such as apparently yourself) should factor in when attempting to evaluate Obama’s leadership intelligently :

  6. “Pentagon clears McChrystal of wrongdoing”

  7. […] In that moment, I knew I was going to have to forsake all my personal values and defend Nickelback in response to the remarks of a member of one of my favourite bands of all time ever. If rock ‘n’ roll is dying, it’s because things are becoming stale and cliched. What’s more cliched than singling out Nickelback as the enemy of good music? All Carney was doing was voicing his opinion, but the hype machine that he was doing so in can spin that any which way they want. Just ask that band from Almost Famous, or heck, even General Stanley A. McChrystal. […]

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