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Friday, September 24, 2010

Gibbs was delighted by humiliating downfall of Gen. McChrystal according to Woodward's new book

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs was delighted by the humiliating downfall of Gen. Stanley McChrystal, who led US efforts in Afghanistan until a slew of outrageous comments by subordinates about civilian leadership at the White House was reported by Rolling Stone, according to a new book by Bob Woodward.

"Like a pig in s- - -" is how Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell described it to others.

"Obama's Wars" chronicles widespread infighting during the Obama administration's first 19 months, especially regarding the decision to send 30,000 more troops into Afghanistan.

One of the people adamantly opposed to the decision was Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, who was concerned that it would imperil President Obama's aggressive domestic agenda.

"Nothing would make Rahm happier than if I said no to the 30,000 . . . Rahm would tell me it'd be much easier to do what I want to do by saying no," Obama told Woodward in a sitdown interview, according to

In another exchange, Vice President Joe Biden warned Obama that if he adopted McChrystal's strategy in Afghanistan, he would "own" that war.

"I already own it," Obama replied.

One drama came before Obama was even sworn in, when he decided to name Hillary Rodham Clinton secretary of state.

Top Obama political adviser David Axelrod asked, "How could you trust Hillary?" according to the book.

But for Clinton, facing a return to the Senate, the decision was clearer. 

"Say yes," pollster Mark Penn urged her in December 2008, according to Woodward. "You're still in the game, he basically told her. It's a no-brainer, a five-minute decision."  (Source)

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