The General McChrystal affair has dominated the news media today. I have no intention of debating the merit or demerits of the war in Afghanistan, but rather about the coverage of the incident itself.
A bevy of commentators and government officials are trotted out to deal with the following two questions:
- Were the General’s comments insubordination or not?
- What should be the appropriate punishment for the General?
But none of these highly paid experts have asked the far more interesting questions.
Why is the military brass in near mutiny against their civilian leaders?
Is Joe Biden respectable (that is, worthy of respect) as a world leader?
I’m not in a position to answer such questions, but they should have been asked. The easy road is “gotcha” journalism, where the only issue is whether or not something said should have been. The actual content of the thought, whether it expresses truth or not, is simply irrelevant in today’s environment.