On Wednesday President Obama accepted the resignation of General Stanley McChrystal. In reality he fired the General and made a spectacle of the matter by parading General Petraeus out in the heat and humidity of a June afternoon.
McChrystal's crime? He is quoted as suggesting that the President is out of touch. The other comments including the priceless jab at VP Bite-Me were made by the General's staff, not cool but certainly not worthy of a dismissal.
The point of the Rolling Stone/Hasting article was lost to the wind as republicans and democrats whipped into a feeding frenzy by the buzzmedia and talking head punditocracy denounced McChrystal. Never before has so much been said about so little that was said in the history of the US Army.
Those reading the complete article are shocked to discover that McChrystal and staff were not planning to over throw the government and suspend the Constitution, just simply passing time while stuck in Paris. McChrystal and his staff were not making a public statement nor addressing the forces he commands. The damming analog was just talk observed by an embedded journalist, who used those comments as lead in to a detailed expose' on the Afghan war effort.
Now reacting to the uneducated public many politicians including South Carolina's Lindsay Graham have spoken out in support of the President's decision. But was it Obama's best option? Was it the best move considering what is on the line is Afghanistan?
The lesson of Waterloo is pick your battles carefully and don't try to take on all the bad guys at one time. If history teaches us one thing its not to fix things that aren't broken. McChrystal had a good handle on the Afghan war. He knew the challenge and was as hard working as he was straight talking. More importantly he was respected by the men on the ground and had built a strong relationship with the Afghans.
Petreus is a manager, a bureaucrat who was smart enough to have guys like McChrystal on the front lines.
McChrystal had complained to Petreus that POTUS and Congress were out of touch with regards to "COIN" all would be wise to read and understand "COIN" Counter Insurgency Operations here.
The truth is Obama is today and he has been in the past distracted, and this distraction will cost us the war in Afghanistan and this battle his Waterloo will leave Obama as a one term president.