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'Rolling Stone' reporter barred from being embedded with US troops

'Rolling Stone'  reporter barred from being embedded with US troops
Gen Stanley McChrystal's illustrious career came to an abrupt end when he resigned after he and his staff were quoted in a Mochael Hastings article criticising and mocking key Obama administration officials. President Barack Obama tapped McChrystal in June 2009 to be the top commander in Afghanistan. The general was known for his discretion and keeping the media at arms length, a perception that was shattered when the infamous 'Rolling Stone' article came out in June.

The author of the Rolling Stone article that ended the military career of Gen Stanley McChrystal, the former top commander in Afghanistan, has been denied permission to join US troops fighting in Afghanistan, the Pentagon said Tuesday, according to the Associated Press.

Defence Department spokesman Col David Lapan told reporters that freelance writer Michael Hastings was rebuffed when he asked to accompany, or "embed," with American forces next month. The rejection came as the Pentagon ramped up an internal investigation into the circumstances behind some of the most salacious material Hastings used in his article in Rolling Stone. The Army inspector-general is interviewing current and former McChrystal aides, the Associated Press has learnt.

The details: [Link]

The inspector-general's review began shortly after Rolling Stone published the article that torpedoed McChrystal's three-decade Army career. The inspector-general, an independent investigator, is considering whether officers were insubordinate and how far up the chain of command responsibility for decisions involving the Hastings interviews extended, officials said. Defense officials outlined the investigation on condition of anonymity because it is ongoing and has reached no conclusions.

Hastings quoted McChrystal and his aides criticising and mocking Obama administration officials, including Vice President Joe Biden. McChrystal was recalled to Washington and fired.

Lapan acknowledged that it's "fairly rare" for the military to turn way a reporter who wants to embed with front-line troops. "There is no right to embed," Lapan said. "It is a choice made between units and individual reporters, and a key element of an embed is having trust that the individuals are going to abide by the ground rules. So in that instance the command in Afghanistan decided there wasn't the trust requisite and denied this request."

Lapan did not say what unit Hastings had asked to accompany or whether he had spelled out his assignment. He is a freelance reporter currently working on a story about helicopters in Afghanistan, but also has signed a book contract that grew out of the McChrystal story.

Hastings did not immediately reply to requests for comment Tuesday.

Date posted: August 4, 2010 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 196