In an interview with CTV, Rolling
Stone freelancer Michael Hastings says he expected fallout from
the investigative piece, but didn’t know McChrystal would be be fired.
” “I thought Gen. McChrystal was essentially un-fireable, that his position in the administration and in the war was very secure,” Hastings told CTV’s Janis Mackey Frayer on Thursday, in Kabul.
” “So I expected that for three or four days they’d have a rough political crisis but that he’d survive it.” “
Hastings didn’t expect go get the access he did, he told Mackey:
” “It was a bit of serendipity that allowed Hastings to have as much access as he did to the general. The journalist had been scheduled to interview the general in Paris, fly with him to Kabul and then follow him around Afghanistan a bit. But the volcanic eruption in Iceland grounded planes in much of Europe, delaying McChrystal and his entourage in Paris and forcing them to take a bus to Berlin. That allowed Hastings to mingle with the general and his staff for close to a month.”
“Hastings says he was a little stunned by how much access to the general he received, but says he knew within the first day that this interview was going to be unique.”
” “The first few conversations I had with him were unusually candid, and they continued for the whole month that I spent with him,” he said.
” “Within the first 24 hours I was there doing the story, (McChrystal) started making jokes about Vice President Biden. That was the most surprising moment that I had. And then secondly, later that night, when they all became extremely intoxicated and sang songs about Afghanistan, that was also surprising.” “
Read about Politico’s disappearing grafs that suggest Hastings, who is a freelancer, was more likely to be tough on McChrystal than a beat reporter who wanted to protect his access to high-profile sources.