Skip to comments.Stanley McChrystal
Posted on 10/04/2009 7:56:37 AM PDT by Saije
At West Point his classmates compared him to the charismatic renegade played by Steve McQueen in The Great Escape. But General Stanley McChrystal, the coalition commander in Afghanistan, can offer no vanishing trick for the deteriorating mission that he has been ordered to rescue. Rather, he has called on politicians and a weary public to make the leap of faith...
McChrystal, who is married and has a (non-military) son, was chosen as the man who would shake things up. He arrived in Kabul last June to declare there were two types of people at headquarters martyrs and those that are going home. Decreeing that troops had to learn to get along with Afghans, he dressed down the commander of a convoy bristling with weapons and speeding through the streets at 60mph: This is exactly the way you create the ugly Isaf (International Security Assistance Force, the coalition of American and Nato forces).
He stopped the practice of flying flags at half-mast every time a soldier was killed. A force thats fighting a war cant spend all its time looking back at what the costs have been, he said. His approach challenged the standard military culture of overwhelming the enemy with superior firepower, sometimes regardless of the consequences. He told his men to think before they shot. In August he angered Germany by apologising for an airstrike on two hijacked Nato fuel trucks. The strike, called in by the German contingent, had killed up to 90 people.
This compassion was a long way from the reputation McChrystal had enjoyed as Americas ruthless chief terrorist pursuer in Iraq and Afghanistan, caught up in a scandal over torture and prisoner abuse. His transformation into a scholar-soldier is perhaps one of his greatest achievements in a remarkable career.
(Excerpt) Read more at timesonline.co.uk ...
I know nothing of this warrior, but based on recent news, he might want to reconsider his “compassionate combat” ideology.
As I recall, the Steve McQueen character in “The Great Escape” got caught and was sent back to the Cooler.
DO NOT BE FOOLED BY THE MSM BLAMING THE GENERAL AND NOT OBAMA.
These Rules of Engagement changes are precisely the ones Obama promised he would implement., so we would no longer be--in his words--"just air-raiding villages and killing civilians, which is causing enormous problems there".
For context and further info on Gen. McChrystal, Andy McCarthy provides worthwhile reading too...not sure what has, or is, going on with the general:
has never been in combat !
Also his Bronze Star does not have a V.
While he may be “Hell on Wheels” as a Obama’s hand picked General for Afghanistan, I prefer Warrior Generals who have heard a shot fired in anger over political generals when the chips are down.
Was he made a 4 star General by Obozo? Was that part of the deal for accepting Obozo's new Rules Of Engagement?
"This compassion was a long way from the reputation McChrystal had enjoyed as Americas ruthless chief terrorist pursuer in Iraq and Afghanistan, caught up in a scandal over torture and prisoner abuse. His transformation into a scholar-soldier is perhaps one of his greatest achievements in a remarkable career."
Becoming a 'scholar-soldier' is a great achievement? - or just something he's doing to please Obozo, his CIC?
Yes, but McCrystal accepted them without even a whimper. When he accepted them Onada and his gang of angry commies knew they had him by the you know what.
No way a successful war can be fought without so-called innocent civilians getting in the way. When you tell soldiers who’re being shot at to think before shooting back you’ve lost the war.
And what was with his running around after the two gasoline tankers were blown up apologizing to everyone in and out of sight for the deaths of “innocent civilian”. I defy the man to explain to me just how he knew they were “innocent”. Oh, what was it these so called “innocents” were doing? They were helping themselves to stolen gasoline. And what was it they were going to do with the stolen gas? I’m sure they had no other intention then to fuel their cook stoves, generators or whatever.
Give me a break! McCrystal has broken faith with American soldiers.
I think it went down this way: Obama and Gates laid down the new ROE. McChrystal said fine but you gotta send lots more troops. Obama screwed him on troops and now McC will be the fall guy. Sound plausible?
Sure does sound plausible because everyone that knew the guy talked about he was a fighter.
General Stanley McChrystal has never been in combat !
From the article:
Hes lanky, smart, tough, a sneaky stealth soldier, said a retired officer. Hes got all the special-ops attributes, plus an intellect. Much of his 33-year career remains classified, including his command of a Green Beret team in 1979 and 1980, several tours in the elite Rangers and service in the Gulf war of 1991.Looks to me like he has indeed been in combat.
Resisting senior officers advice that his career would prosper if he got a desk job, he insisted on staying in the field. However, he had seen little combat in his early years: I missed Panama and Grenada and it bothered me. You always wonder how youll do.
Those two operations were characterised by Americas post-Vietnam force protection mentality of using massive firepower and minimising US deaths. A similar approach governed the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, where the riskier jobs were undertaken by US special forces. These became McChrystals hunting grounds during 2003, when he was appointed head of the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) a unit whose existence the Pentagon refused to acknowledge for years. It oversaw the clandestine Delta Force and the navy Seals. Although based in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, McChrystal was said to be fond of accompanying his men on commando raids. I wont claim I was ever any great help on the missions, he said, adding that his reason for going was to understand the challenges faced. Ive never shot anyone, he claimed. Yet, according to Newsweek last week, he has been a very effective killer.
It was McChrystal, according to former CIA officials, who in 2005 pushed for a secret joint operation in the tribal region of Pakistan, aimed at capturing or killing Ayman alZawahiri, Osama Bin Ladens deputy. It was cancelled at the last minute by Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, as being too dangerous and based on unreliable intelligence.
However, McChrystal succeeded in an operation against Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the Al-Qaeda chief in Iraq. Jordanian agents identified Zarqawis clerical adviser, who was tracked to the terrorists hideout near Baqubah, north of Baghdad. After several weeks observation, the hut was destroyed in an F-16 airstrike. McChrystal, who reportedly made an eyes-on identification of Zarqawis body, was personally congratulated by President George W Bush in a telephone call. It was his second coup, after the capture by JSOC forces of Saddam in December 2003.
McChrystal was known as Rumsfelds man and a favourite of Dick Cheney,
The war was lost in November 2001, and zero's ROEs have nothing to do with it. His ROEs will increase the COST of defeat, but the war was lost the day Operation Infinite Justice was renamed, lest it anger Allah.
The sad thing is that George W. Bush could have had anything he asked for when he addressed the Congress on September 16, 2001, and he didn't have the imagination or the balls to ask for enough.
Everything else, including the man calling himself "Barack Obama", follows from that.
You might want to do a little more research. GEN McChrystal commanded the 75th Ranger Regiment in combat. He also commanded the Joint Special Operations effort focused on High Value Targets in Iraq. He accompanied his operators on raids, including raids that involved close combat. Lots of guys with extensive combat experience who don't have valor awards and the CIB is a matter of meeting a set of specific criteria. Since he was a senior guy when the war started, I don't make much of it.
Well, Eisenhower did ok, on balance.
Read the article once more...
Colin Powell and Weslsy Clark were combat vets. Would you perfer one of them to lead the troops? Being a comabt vet dont make one a good general.It is a plus, but should be the only factor.
McChrystal is trying the “hearts and mind “ thing. Is it a good plan, who knows. Everyother plan seemed to fail. The Ahgans seem to thrive on war and accept it as a naural occurance. Show what could be conceived as weakness is fatal. Give it a shot.
The flag at half mast thing is a non issue. Morn your dead after the war, not durning it. The soliders there know the sacrifices their brother already made.
A guy—obviously—who doesn’t toot his own horn.
Read a story where the General went to an meeting with Afghan leaders after the oil tank incident. THEY wanted him to lower the hammer. My guess is that he knows they are a warrior culture.