General Stanley McChrystal will go out with all the benefits of a four-star general, even though he hasn’t been in the position long enough to retire with that rank.
McChrystal was fired last week as the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan. President Obama relieved McChrystal of his command after the general and his aides were quoted in a “Rolling Stone” article disparaging the president, vice president and top White House advisers involved in the war effort.
On Monday, McChrystal informed his bosses at the Pentagon that he is retiring from active duty. But whether he’d get to keep his 4 stars — and get the retirement benefits that come with them — was an open question. McChrystal has been a four-star general for only about a year — half the time normally necessary to qualify for a four-star general’s retirement income.
As commander in chief, it’s Obama call.
“The president believes — and has talked with Secretary Gates about this — and we will do whatever is necessary to ensure that he, somebody who has served the country as ably as he has, can retire at a four-star level,” White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said.
Photo Credit: REUTERS/Massoud Hossaini/Pool (Gen. McChrystal aboard a helicopter leaving Kandahar city June 13, 2010)