Screenwriters, don’t even bother, I guarantee you Clooney’s already got someone writing this: General David Petraeus, director of the CIA, has resigned after he admitted an extramarital affair. Turns out, the other woman is kind of insane and also posed a security threat.
Petraeus had earlier last week admitted to having an affair, not naming any names, and resigned his post. Quickly thereafter, the name of his biographer, Paula Broadwell, had been released by the media as having an affair with Petreaus, but confirmation from the General was not forthcoming publicly.
FBI Counterintelligence had revealed the affair after beginning an investigation of cyber-harassment against a State Department military liaison. The volunteer unpaid liaison — Jill Kelley, a family friend of Petreaus — was receiving threatening e-mails from an anonymous source.
When she made a complaint to the FBI, they traced the e-mails back to Broadwell and were able to obtain access to her e-mail account. When they dug through it, they discovered the relationship. The FBI had no idea what the hell was going on — only that a volunteer liaison was getting threatening e-mails and they were investigating.
Lawmakers have been questioning the timing of Petraeus’ reveal, suggesting that the FBI may have held out on the announcement until after the elections. The FBI flatly denies it, revealing the timeline of their investigation and showing that it was handled at the “regional” level, rather than national, until the affair was revealed.
Once they realized they had the CIA Director to deal with, FBI agents brought the case to FBI Director Robert Mueller, and then passed the information to the National Intelligence Director James Clapper on election day, who pressured Petreaus to resign.
However, what probably irks lawmakers is that their oversight committees were not informed of any of this until Friday. In case you’re wondering, Congressional oversight committees love knowing something other people don’t, so when they’re denied that, they… well, they throw a hissy fit.
There’s also the matter of Petraeus’ testimony to be given on the Hill about the attacks in Benghazi, Libya, that resulted in the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens. His resignation doesn’t mean he suddenly doesn’t have to testify, and lawmakers may plan on making him do so without delay. Right now Michael Morell, the acting CIA Director, is planned to take Petraeus’ place, but there’s debate on the Hill to bring the former Director in anyway.
Question: What a mess. Who do you think should be the next CIA director?