Saturday, April 23, 2011

McChrystal v. Rolling Stone

A Pentagon inquiry into a Rolling Stone magazine profile of Gen. Stanley McChrystal that led to his dismissal as the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan has cleared him of wrongdoing.

The inquiry's results, released Monday, also called into question the accuracy of the magazine's report last June, which quoted anonymously people around McChrystal making disparaging remarks about members of President Obama's national-security team, including Vice President Joe Biden.

At the time he dismissed McChrystal, Obama said the general had fallen short of "the standard that should be set by a commanding general."

Which is worse: (a) that the White House is so desperate to appear hip and cool that it allowed a Rolling Stone reporter to "imbed" on the staff of the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan (with unlimited access); or, (2) that military personnel and policy in Afghanistan were subsequently shuffled on the basis of inaccurate and unattributed statements by unnamed sources in the subsequent article in Rolling Stone?

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