Yale Democrats Drop Support for Screening of Pat Tillman FIlm—After Gen. McChrystal Hired to Teach There Part-Time

Hot off the presses at The Nation:

A group of young Democrats at Yale University canceled  its support for a screening of “The Tillman Story” at the campus after former U.S. commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, agreed to teach part-time at the school this fall.

You see, McChrystal is identified in The Tillman Story (and earlier in various news probes) as a willing participant in the cover-up of how the soldier died. Mary Tillman, mother of Pat, has called  Yale’s hiring of the general  “insulting.”

The Yale Democrats have explained their move  by blaming it on the framing of a post-screening discussion that aimed to discuss McChrystal’s role in the cover-up, given his upcoming arrival on campus. But one would expect such a discussion given the recent reports of his hiring.   Event organizers usually pray for such a local angle. But Ben Stango, president of the offended organization, told the campus paper,  “The Yale College Democrats do not attack war heroes. We do not attack members of the Yale faculty.”

In a phone conversation, Stango said that statement had been taken out of context. “The real issue,” he said, “was the event not turning into an attack that was aimed at raising press for the film.”  He pointed out that his group did not have control over the post-film discussion.   However, the panel, he said, was to be comprised of the film’s drrector, a film studies professor (who has endorsed the Yale Democrats dropping their sponsorship) and Stango himself, so it’s hard to imagine how it could have turned into a “Bash McChrystal” forum. 

Mary Tillman told  the New York Daily News that McChrystal’s “involvement in the tortures at Camp Nama and in the cover-up of Pat’s death has never been satisfactorily scrutinized. The House Armed Services Committee failed to vet him properly in the spring of 2009. The fact that Yale wants to employ him to instruct courses on leadership is extremely insulting and unsettling.”

According to the Yale Daily News, key topics in the general’s seminar include:  “Role of a Leader,” “Coping with Failure,”  “Making Difficult Decisions” and “Loyalty, Trust and Relationship.”

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