(CNN) - Gen. Stanley McChrystal, America's top military commander in Afghanistan, has been recalled to Washington amid his controversial remarks about colleagues in a Rolling Stone article, officials said.
He was summoned to attend a meeting on Afghanistan and Pakistan in person rather than by video conference, a senior administration official said Tuesday.
"He has been recalled to Washington," another official said.
McChrystal apologized Tuesday for the profile, in which the general and his staff appear to mock top civilian officials, including the vice president. The article is set to appear in Friday's edition of Rolling Stone.
Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, apologized early Tuesday for a magazine profile in which he and his staff appear to mock top civilian officials, including the vice president. (PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images/File)
(CNN) - Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, apologized early Tuesday for a magazine profile in which he and his staff appear to mock top civilian officials, including the vice president.
The article is scheduled to appear in Friday's edition of Rolling Stone.
"I extend my sincerest apology for this profile. It was a mistake reflecting poor judgment and should never have happened," McChrystal said in a Pentagon statement. "Throughout my career, I have lived by the principles of personal honor and professional integrity. What is reflected in this article falls far short of that standard."
In the profile, author Michael Hastings writes that McChrystal and his staff had imagined ways of dismissing Vice President Joe Biden with a one-liner as they prepared for a question-and-answer session in Paris, France, in April. The general had grown tired of questions about Biden since earlier dismissing a counterterrorism strategy the vice president had offered.
"'Are you asking about Vice President Biden?' McChrystal says with a laugh. 'Who's that?'" Hastings writes.
"'Biden?' suggests a top adviser. 'Did you say: Bite Me?'"
Washington (CNN) - Finding al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and rolling back a resurgent Taliban are necessary steps toward winning the war in Afghanistan, the top U.S. commander there told a Senate committee Tuesday.
Bin Laden remains at large more than eight years after the September 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington that triggered the Afghan war, and is widely believed to be hiding along the rugged border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan,
said the world's most wanted terrorist is "an iconic figure" whose survival "emboldens al Qaeda as a franchising organization across the world."
"It would not defeat al Qaeda to have him captured or killed, but I don't think we can finally defeat al Qaeda until he is finally captured or killed," McChrystal told the Senate Armed Services Committee. But he said if bin Laden is hiding across the border, "It is outside of my mandate."
In addition, he said, pushing back the Taliban - which allowed al Qaeda to operate from Afghanistan before 9/11 - is a "prerequisite" for destroying the terrorist network.
"To pursue our core goal of defeating al Qaeda and preventing their return to Afghanistan, we must disrupt and degrade the Taliban's capacity, deny their access to the Afghan population, and strengthen the Afghan security forces," he said.
Updated: 4:16 p.m.
Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) - America's commander in Afghanistan directly addressed those who will carry out President Obama's strategy for the war there.
Gen. Stanley McChrystal focused on goals and the mission during Wednesday's videoconference for headquarters staff of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force and commanders of American troops.
"It is very important that we are clear about what we are doing," McChrystal said. "The whole world is watching. The whole world is listening. We must make sure we are of one mind."
Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama on Monday will meet with his national security team on Afghanistan, the White House said Sunday.
This comes as Obama and his advisers have held meetings in recent weeks to discuss U.S. strategy in Afghanistan and Pakistan, where Taliban and al Qaeda militants threaten the governments of both countries.
American officials continue to weigh a reported call from Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, for as many as 40,000 additional troops for the fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan.
The meeting - closed to the press - is expected to include Vice President Joe Biden via videoconference, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.
Other attendees are expected to be National Security Adviser Gen. James Jones, Deputy National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, and John Brennan, assistant to the president for counterterrorism and homeland security.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama huddled with top military, foreign policy and national security advisers Wednesday as part of an ongoing review of U.S. strategy in Afghanistan.
The meeting, the fifth such gathering in recent weeks, came as the administration continued to weigh a call for as many as 40,000 additional troops from Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan.
McChrystal has said the extra manpower is necessary to implement an effective counterinsurgency strategy.
Others in the administration are advocating a different approach. Vice President Joe Biden has called for a counterterrorism strategy, which would focus on using special forces and technology to reduce the number of al Qaeda insurgents on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Determining the amount of troops necessary to win a war is never an easy decision for a commander in chief and his military commanders if history is any guide.
And it's a dilemma President Obama facesas pressure mounts on him to decide what strategy will improve conditions in Afghanistan.
The president and his top military, national security and foreign policy advisers are conducting an intensive strategic review of the U.S. military presence in the war-torn nation.
Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, is calling for a counterinsurgency strategy that would add as many as 40,000 troops.
But others in the administration want a different approach.
Vice President Joe Biden has called for a counterterrorism strategy, which would focus on using special forces and technology to reduce the number of al Qaeda insurgents on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.
If the president should listen to McChrystal and adopt a troop "surge," the question remains: How many is enough?
One expert said such a large number is needed to reduce violence throughout the country - the 40,000 troops would allow the U.S. military to "reverse the momentum of the insurgency, which has been on the rise," said Kimberly Kagan of the Institute for the Study of War, who has advised McChrystal on Afghanistan.
That number, Kagan said, would help fill in gaps around Kandahar in the southern part of the country where Taliban forces have amassed. But she warned that eventually, troops would also be needed to tamp down the insurgency in other parts of the country.
(CNN) - Deliberations over what to do in Afghanistan are taking place behind closed doors, but the divisions among some of President Obama's trusted advisers are starting to emerge.
Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, has made no secret about his belief that the U.S. needs to send more troops now - or it will risk failure, making an unusual appearance last week in front of a global strategic think tank to present his case.
"We need to reverse the current trends, and time does matter. Waiting does not prolong a favorable outcome. This effort will not remain winnable indefinitely," McChrystal said last week in a speech in London, England.
McChrystal argued the same point in an interview that aired last week on CBS' "60 Minutes."
Obama has said he needs time to meet with his advisers and evaluate the best way forward before making a decision about resources. As discussions continue this week - including two meetings with his national security team -
some are suggesting that it would be best if talks about strategy be kept behind closed doors.
Obama also plans to host a bipartisan, bicameral meeting Tuesday with congressional leaders about the war, two sources said.