General McChrysral (was) resigned today. It was a smart move—not by the president, but rather by the general. McChrystal is a brilliant real life strategist. He must have realized that the war in Afghanistan was going badly. The war was not winnable under the present constraints, requiring him to play by rules he considered wrong, poorly devised, politically motivated by men who did not understand what it took to win it. What's more, the strategy he advocated—a government in a box—was not working due to the inability of the corrupt, apathetic Afghan government to put it into a sustainable action. McChrystal's strategy has also brought about a considerable measure of criticism due to its semi-covert financial support, bribes, and disregard for the drug trafficking business conducted by corrupt officials and warlords. It was, still is, the only way he could win their backing and cooperation, protect his troops, minimize casualties.
The general did not want to go down in history as the one who could not bring home the trophy. He was not about to be nicknamed - Loser. He believed that if it had been up to him, he would have run a different war. He would have gathered more resources, troops, money, and local authority. He would not have been subject to a withdrawal date before watching a "Mission Accomplished" banner hung over the White House. He would have returned home a hero to a hero welcome; he would have been an Eisenhower.
General McChrystal made a choice. He was not drunk when he gave an interview to Rolling Stone Magazine. Not only was he sober; he was calculated and alert. He wanted out of his mission, and he wanted the reason to be out as well. He knew that the president would fire him in consequence of his interview, and he was looking forward to the boot.
His words would prove right, he supposed. The war would be another Vietnam, but he would not be blamed. On the contrary, he would be praised for his foresight; he would be considered a leader, a visionary, maybe a future president. Time would prove him right, he deemed. He would sacrifice his present job as part of this gambit. It would pay off handsomely in days to come.
Even though the Afghan war would end up badly, he knew it would no longer be his fault; he would not be responsible for the looming disaster; he would still be a winner.
Leave a Reply.