Gen. Stanley McChrystal went into his meeting with President Barack Obama Wednesday morning to defend his job as the top U.S commander in Afghanistan in the wake of disparaging remarks he made about top administration officials in a Rolling Stone magazine article coming out Friday.
McChrystal headed into his meeting with Obama at 9:45 a.m., just after concluding another closed-door meeting at the Pentagon with Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. A defense official confirmed that the three met for about a half hour.
The general’s job is on the line after he and his staff made damaging comments about the president, the vice president and national security officials in Rolling Stone. One McChrystal aide called National Security Adviser James Jones a “clown”; another referred to Special Envoy Richard Holbrooke as “a wounded animal.” And McChrystal himself said of his diplomatic partner, Afghanistan Ambassador Karl Eikenberry: “Here’s one that covers his flank for the history books. Now if we fail, they can say, I told you so.'”
A handful of Democratic lawmakers have said McChrystal should be fired; other Members have condemned the remarks but stopped short of calling for his ouster.
After their meeting, both Obama and McChrystal will head into a previously scheduled war council meeting at 11:45 a.m. with Biden, Mullen, Gates, Eikenberry, Holbrooke and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and others.