The Defense Department has cleared Gen. Stanley McChrystal of all wrongdoing following the inspector general's inquiry into last year's controversial Rolling Stone article. In the article, senior aides to McChrystal were quoted as making disparaging remarks about the Obama administration; one aide, for example, referred to Vice President Biden by using the phrase, "Bite me." But Pentagon investigators could not confirm the events reported, and cleared the general's aides and advisers as well as McChrystal himself, the New York Times reports.
Rolling Stone and the article's author, Michael Hastings, continue to defend the article's accuracy. But the inspector general's review concluded that "not all of the events at issue occurred as reported in the article," noting that some instances did occur, but in a different context, while others were denied outright by witnesses. For example, in sworn testimony, no witnesses could confirm that the exact words used with regard to Biden were "bite me," nor could they identify the speaker—though they did confirm that someone made a comment about Biden and "that the rejoinder may have included the words 'bite me.'" A prior Army investigation had already cleared McChrystal and Army officers, but not his civilian aides.