Meanwhile, McChrystal has finished drawing up his request for what is expected to be thousands or tens of thousands of additional trainers and combat troops for Afghanistan, but he is awaiting instructions before submitting the request to the Pentagon.
Senior defense officials said that, in effect, McChrystal has been asked to delay submitting the request.
"We're working through the process by which we want that submitted," Gates told reporters, without elaborating.
This isn't necessarily sinister in any way. But it does relate back to my recent print piece on ways in which Obama could be tempted to repeat some of George Bush's mistakes in Iraq.
Update: Via Ben Smith, CNN has an even more explicit claim of politics affecting troop decisions.