McChrystal Takes Blame for Article That Tanked His Career

Ex-general's memoir also takes potshot at Rolling Stone reporter

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Jan 6, 2013 4:31 PM CST

(Newser) – Speaking out for the first time since he resigned, retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal takes the blame for a Rolling Stone article and the unflattering comments attributed to his staff about the Obama administration that ended his Afghanistan command and army career. "Regardless of how I judged the story for fairness or accuracy, responsibility was mine," McChrystal writes in his new memoir, in a carefully worded denouncement of the story. The Rolling Stone article anonymously quoted McChrystal's aides as criticizing Obama's team, including Vice President Joe Biden.

Biden had disagreed with McChrystal's strategy that called for more troops in Afghanistan. Biden preferred to send a smaller counterterrorism and training force—a policy the White House is now considering as it transitions troops from the Afghan war. McChrystal adds the choice to resign as US commander in Afghanistan was his own: "I called no one for advice," he writes in My Share of the Task. The closest McChrystal comes to revealing his regret over allowing a reporter weeks of unfettered access with few ground rules comes much earlier in the book: "By nature I tended to trust people and was typically open and transparent. ... But such transparency would go astray when others saw us out of context or when I gave trust to those few who were unworthy of it." See more here.

This July 23, 2010, file photo shows Gen. Stanley McChrystal reviewing troops for the last time as he is honored at a retirement ceremony at Fort McNair in Washington.
This July 23, 2010, file photo shows Gen. Stanley McChrystal reviewing troops for the last time as he is honored at a retirement ceremony at Fort McNair in Washington.   (J. Scott Applewhite)
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