Michael Hastings’ blockbuster story for Rolling Stone, “The Runaway General,” which led to the abrupt, forced resignation of General Stanley McChrystal, was nominated for a National Magazine Award earlier this month.
Meanwhile, the Pentagon was launching an investigation of its own into the veracity of the claims made in the story. The New York Times reports that the inspector general’s report, released Monday, found no wrongdoing by the general or his aides, and moreover, challenged the accuracy of the Rolling Stone profile.
In turn, Rolling Stone and its executive editor Eric Bates maintained on Monday that the article was “accurate in every detail,” and actually questioned the Pentagon’s methods in a statement on the magazine’s website:
Much of the report, in fact, confirms our reporting, noting only that the Pentagon was unable to find witnesses “who acknowledged making or hearing the comments as reported.” This is not surprising, given that the civilian and military advisers questioned by the Pentagon knew that their careers were on the line if they admitted to making such comments.
After a story like “The Runaway General,” we’d be more surprised if the controversy wasn’t continuing on.