Ex-US commander McChrystal says no scandal in memoir

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 05 January, 2013, 5:57pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 05 January, 2013, 6:01pm

Stanley McChrystal, the former US commander in Afghanistan who was sacked by President Barack Obama over a magazine interview, said Friday his new memoir steers clear of gossip and scandal.

The retired four-star general’s book, My Share of the Task, is due out next week but he said he avoided settling scores in his account of his military career, which included clashes with Obama’s advisers over the Afghan war.

“For people looking for scandals or criticism, they will be disappointed. That’s not who I am,” McChrystal told Foreign Policy’s “Situation Report,” on the global affairs magazine’s website.

He said the book is a “pretty well-researched account of what we did,” including his tenure as head of Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), which oversaw elite special forces hunting down Al-Qaeda militants in Iraq.

“The core of the book is the transformation of JSOC during combat,” he said. “We changed completely how we operated.”

McChrystal was abruptly forced to step down in June 2010 following a Rolling Stone magazine article in which his aides displayed disdain for the White House and Obama’s civilian deputies.

McChrystal’s book was due to come out in November but its release was delayed by the Pentagon, which took months to complete a security review of the manuscript.

The former special operations officer has kept a low-profile since he left the military but he will be making a flurry of appearances on television news shows starting this weekend to tout his memoir, which is published by Penguin.

Since he left Afghanistan, McChrystal has taught at Yale University, set up his own consulting firm and been recruited to serve on several corporate boards, including a firm owned by German engineering giant Siemens.