The Runaway General

Topics: International Security Assistance Force, United States, Stanley A. McChrystal Pages: 2 (602 words) Published: April 6, 2014

The Runaway General - An Analytical Essay
There are many lessons that could be learned from the story of General Stanley McChrystal, Commander, International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan and his advocacy for Counter Insurgency (COIN). He led the concerted effort of the Allied Forces on the war on terrorism with Afghanistan as the theatre of war and known as Al Qaeda territory. However, this war for all indications is a losing war if the withdrawal of troops from the allied forces such as Denmark, Germany, Netherlands and Canada will be used as a gauge. Yet, it is inevitable since the United States is at the forefront with General McChrystal in command.

Although, President Obama does not know General McChrystal, he was put at the helm to command the military campaign in Afghanistan. He is a product of West Point and the academe that honed his skills as a military leader. He surrounded himself with people that are all veteran in war fighting and also employed technical savvy soldiers who are into cyber warfare.

He adhere to the authoritative style of leadership mixed with expertise in martial arts and audacity that made him successful in his early career at the tactical level. But his mettle is not yet tested in the strategic and operational level since it was his first time to command a large unit coming from the different branch of service and nations.

Being an advocate for COIN, he would like to put this into action in Afghanistan. However, the US government saw the cost ineffectiveness of the counter insurgency in Afghanistan. COIN strategy is very expensive, protracted and requires a large number of troops. His detractors from Pentagon, many US senior defense officials and other retired military officers commented that McChrystal will most likely fail in his mission.

In his ardent desire to succeed, there were collateral damages, human rights violations and loss of lives committed that further alienated the Afghan people....
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