Why Isn’t McChrystal Testifying to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Tomorrow?
Now that the House and Senate armed services committees have heard from Amb. Karl Eikenberry and Gen. Stanley McChrystal, there are two more hearings to go: the Senate Foreign Relations Committee tomorrow morning, and then the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Thursday. Well, two for Eikenberry. McChrystal will have a rest tomorrow, as his boss, Gen. David Petraeus, the commander of all forces in the Middle East and South Asia, will pinch-hit.
Why’s that? The Senate committee wants to hear about Pakistan, not just Afghanistan, and how U.S. efforts regionally affect conditions in both — something that’s been missing in today’s two hearings. After all, the Obama administration’s strategy “has a broader perspective beyond just Afghanistan,” said committee spokesman Frederick Jones, and so “we made the decision to invite Gen. Petraeus to testify.”
A McChrystal aide confirmed that McChrystal will not be delivering any testimony tomorrow. “Gen. McChrystal was not extended an invitation to testify,” Jones said. “Gen. McChrystal will have testified on a number of occasions prior to our hearing.” In fairness, several senators this afternoon covered the same ground as representatives at the House hearing earlier this morning.