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In Depth with Francis Rose features daily interviews with top government executives and contractors. Listen live from 4 to 7 p.m. or download his archived interviews below.
McChrystal out, Petraeus in in Afghanistan
Wednesday - 6/23/2010, 6:42pm EDT
"President Barack Obama sacked his loose-lipped Afghanistan commander Wednesday, a seismic shift for the military order in wartime, and chose the familiar, admired - and tightly disciplined - Gen. David Petraeus to replace him. Petraeus, architect of the Iraq war turnaround, was once again to take hands-on leadership of a troubled war effort.
"Obama said bluntly that Gen. Stanley McChrystal's scornful remarks about administration officials represent conduct that 'undermines the civilian control of the military that is at the core of our democratic system.'
"He fired the commander after summoning him from Afghanistan for a face to face meeting in the Oval Office and named Petraeus, the Central Command chief who was McChrystal's direct boss, to step in. Obama had offered the job to Petraeus during a private White House meeting earlier Wednesday, said a senior military official.
"In a statement expressing praise for McChrystal yet certainty he had to go, Obama said he did not make the decision over any disagreement in policy or 'out of any sense of personal insult.' Flanked by Vice President Joe Biden, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in the Rose Garden, he said: 'War is bigger than any one man or woman, whether a private, a general, or a president.'
"He urged the Senate to confirm Petraeus swiftly and emphasized the Afghanistan strategy he announced in December was not shifting with McChrystal's departure."
I had live coverage of the President's remarks on today's show; you can see the President's remarks in the video below. After the speech concluded, Federal News Radio National Security Correspondent J.J. Green joined me with analysis of the speech and the events leading up to it, and what it means for the military moving forward.