Barack Obamas rådgivere er irritert på øverstkommanderende i Afghanistan, Stanley McChrystal fordi han åpent og kategorisk forkaster en alternativ policy i Afghanistan basert på spesialsoldater og droner, hvor målet er Al Qaida, ikke Taliban.
Det var under et besøk i London sist uke at McChrystal ikke la skjul på hva han mente om den alternative linjen.
He told the Institute of International and Strategic Studies that the formula, which is favoured by Vice-President Joe Biden, would lead to «Chaos-istan».
When asked whether he would support it, he said: «The short answer is: No.»
He went on to say: «Waiting does not prolong a favorable outcome. This effort will not remain winnable indefinitely, and nor will public support.»
The remarks have been seen by some in the Obama administration as a barbed reference to the slow pace of debate within the White House.
Gen McChrystal delivered a report on Afghanistan requested by the president on Aug 31, but Mr Obama held only his second «principals meeting» on the issue last week.
He will hold at least one more this week, but a decision on how far to follow Gen McChrystal’s recommendation to send 40,000 more US troops will not be made for several weeks.
A military expert said: «They still have working relationship but all in all it’s not great for now.»
Some commentators regarded the general’s London comments as verging on insubordination.
Men hvorfor blir de så provosert? Kan det være fordi generalen er så klar at det er vanskelig å komme med unnskyldninger i ettertid, hvis det viser seg at han hadde rett.
As a divide opened up between the military and the White House, senior military figures began criticising the White House for failing to tackle the issue more quickly.
They made no secret of their view that without the vast ground force recommended by Gen McChrystal, the Afghan mission could end in failure and a return to power of the Taliban.
«They want to make sure people know what they asked for if things go wrong,» said Lawrence Korb, a former assistant secretary of defence.