The Washington Post defends the article that allowed anonymous allies of Gen. McChrystal to attack the integrity of Rolling Stone and its writer Michael Hastings.

“The sources would only allow us to use the material on condition of anonymity,” Post National Security editor Cameron Barr told Yahoo! News. “Given the significant impact of the Rolling Stone story, we felt the public’s interest in seeing what military officials had to say about how it was reported and fact-checked was greater than in keeping that information to ourselves because the officials wouldn’t come on the record,” Barr continued. “We independently contacted several sources for the story.”

…Barr explained that “the story went through changes throughout [the] day as we added reporting to it that made the piece more comprehensive,” adding that the Post will “often revise webfiles for the paper.” The A1 print story included some additional reporting, such as when McChrystal first learned the details of the Rolling Stone story. However, it still included no on-the-record sources making the charge that Hastings used off-the-record materials or details to back up the allegation.

Still sounds like a bad call by The Post.