Is President Obama an incompetent amateur with an administration full of second-rate appointees? Yes. But I'm saying that as an unknown blogger. I don't work for the government, and I'm not commanding the U.S. war effort in Afghanistan. Regardless of what you think about the Obama administration, the comments by General Stanley McChrystal and his staff are way out of line, a clear case of insubordination and attempting to undermine the civilian leadership. That type of behavior should not be tolerated from someone in his position. It's an embarrassment not only to the administration, but to the U.S. as a whole. It exposes the dissension within the ranks of our leaders to our enemies, and it's completely unnecessary.
General McChrystal is well-aware that he went way over the line, but he did it deliberately. His apology is not enough. President Obama needs to exercise some actual leadership for a change, and fire the general. Is it any wonder that we constantly have secret information leaking to the press, when even a high-ranking general like McChrystal thinks he can talk to reporters with impunity? We don't need generals who can't keep their mouths shut. If McChrystal wanted to criticize the administration, he should have done the honorable thing and resigned. But he'd rather have it both ways -- keep his job, and undermine those who are above him through the press.
Relieving McChrystal of command will be difficult. It will free him to launch even nastier and more embarrassing public criticism of the administration, and will be used as an issue against the president. Most likely it will cause at least some disruption in our war efforts in Afghanistan, as a new command team takes charge. But the president should do it anyway.