David Petraeus Scandal TimeLine
David Petraeus, 60, one of the nation’s most celebrated military generals, told the president he would resign after acknowledging an extramarital affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, 40, a West Point graduate who spent time with him in Afghanistan starting in 2010. His resignation adds to the embarrassment of the CIA, already reeling from the Libya violence, and fueled more questions from Congress about the agency. The White House on Sunday declined to comment on the timing of the Petraeus disclosure, but Feinstein said that his resignation had nothing to do with the Benghazi controversy.
Here is the full text of a letter ex-CIA Director David Petraeus sent to colleagues after he submitted his resignation to President Obama:
Central Intelligence Agency
9 November 2012
Yesterday afternoon, I went to the White House and asked the President to be allowed, for personal reasons, to resign from my position as D/CIA. After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair. Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours. This afternoon, the President graciously accepted my resignation.
As I depart Langley, I want you to know that it has been the greatest of privileges to have served with you, the officers of our Nation’s Silent Service, a work force that is truly exceptional in every regard. Indeed, you did extraordinary work on a host of critical missions during my time as director, and I am deeply grateful to you for that.
Teddy Roosevelt once observed that life’s greatest gift is the opportunity to work hard at work worth doing. I will always treasure my opportunity to have done that with you and I will always regret the circumstances that brought that work with you to an end.
Thank you for your extraordinary service to our country, and best wishes for continued success in the important endeavors that lie ahead for our country and our Agency.
With admiration and appreciation,
David H. Petraeus
Jill Kelley, 37, of Tampa has been identified as the woman who prompted the broader investigation into harassing e-mails that led to Broadwell, and ultimately, to Petraeus, a federal law enforcement official said. The official, who has been briefed on the matter, was not authorized to comment publicly.
Kelley serves as a social liaison to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, where the military’s Central Command and Special Operations Command are located. Jill Kelley and her husband, Scott, hired Washington, D.C.-based crisis manager Judy Smith and attorney Abbe Lowell. Kelley unwittingly found herself at the middle of this scandal after reportedly receiving several threatening emails from an anonymous account. The allegation triggered a broader inquiry when the FBI examined a trove of electronic communications, which allegedly pointed to Broadwell and the relationship with the CIA director.
Smith issued a statement on behalf of the family late Sunday: “We and our family have been friends with General Petraeus and his family for over 5 years. We respect his and his family’s privacy and want the same for us and our three children.”
The Petraeus drama unfolded as the CIA was being put on the griddle in Senate and House hearings this week as it investigates the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, where the U.S. ambassador, Chris Stevens, and two of the spy agency’s employees were killed Sept. 11 this year.
Broadwell served in the United States Army and the United States Army Reserve. She was promoted to lieutenant colonel in the Reserves in August 2012. She was Deputy Director of the Jebsen Center for Counter-Terrorism Studies at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. She also worked with the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force. Broadwell met Petraeus in 2006 when he was a speaker at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. She was a graduate student at the time. According to the Charlotte Observer, she told him about her research interests after he spoke. He handed her his card and offered his help. She began a doctoral dissertation that included a case study of his leadership, with Petraeus fully cooperating. She co-authored a biography of Petraeus, All In: The Education of General David Petraeus, with Vernon Loeb that was published in January 2012. Her account of the razing of Khosrow Sofla was criticized for minimizing the destruction. Broadwell has also written for the New York Times and the Boston Globe. Her public speaking engagements have included addressing a group of Republican women in October 2012 organized by the then Colorado House Majority Leader Amy Stephens.
Broadwell met Gen. David Petraeus when he spoke at Harvard, where she was a graduate student, according to the preface she co-authored the book “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.” She told the general about her research interests and he agreed to put her in touch with people studying the same issues. “I later discovered that he was famous for this type of mentoring and networking, especially with aspiring soldier-scholars,” Broadwell wrote.
Broadwell began her Ph.D. dissertation on Petraeus and his innovative leadership skills. Some interviews were done via e-mail. Others were conducted on occasional jogs with him, including one run Broadwell took with Petraeus and his team along the Potomac River in Washington.
Broadwell moved with her husband, Scott, to Charlotte, North Carolina, according to the Charlotte Observer.
Petraeus was tapped to replace Gen. Stanley McChrystal as the top commander in Afghanistan. Broadwell decided to turn her research into a book and follow Petraeus to that country. “We had a relationship before I went there as far as this dissertation was concerned, so it just took it to another level,” Broadwell told CNN’s Brooke Baldwin in February.
August 31, 2011
Petraeus retires from the U.S. Army, leaves Afghanistan.
September 6, 2011
Petraeus sworn in as CIA director and returns to the Washington area.
Petraeus and Broadwell began their affair about two months after he took over at the CIA, according to a Petraeus friend.
E-mails began appearing in Petraeus family friend Jill Kelley’s inbox—emails she says were harassment. The Petraeus affair first came to light when an FBI investigation looked into a complaint that Broadwell was sending harassing e-mails to Kelley, 37, a U.S. official said.
Broadwell and Petraeus end their affair about four months ago, a decision reached mutually, and the two last talked about a month ago, Petraeus’ friend said.
September 11, 2012
U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed in a terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi. The subsequent fallout fueled Republican criticism of the Obama administration’s foreign policy. The administration pointed to incomplete intelligence reports for early statements that the attack grew from a demonstration over an anti-Muslim movie.
Broadwell was interviewed twice by FBI investigators. They also gained access to her computer and discovered emails that turned out to be from Petraeus. Petreaus was also interviewed once during that same time frame, a U.S. official said.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor was made aware of an extramarital affair involving Petraeus, Doug Heye, a spokesman for the congressman, told CNN. Heye said Cantor, a Republican, was tipped to the information by an FBI employee. The congressman had a conversation with the official, described as a whistle-blower, about the affair and potential national security concerns involved in the matter, he said.
November 6, 2012
America re-elects President Barack Obama. The same day, Petraeus told Director of National Intelligence James Clapper about the affair, according to a senior U.S. intelligence official. Clapper then advised Petraeus to resign, the official said.
November 9, 2012
Petraeus, 60, steps down, admitting to an affair. The House and Senate intelligence committees were informed of the FBI investigation the same day, prompting outrage from House and Senate members. Petraeus’ resignation came just days before he was scheduled to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee about the Benghazi attack.
The scandal that took down David Petraeus has apparently ensnared another powerful general, as authorities announced that Gen. John Allen is under investigation for allegedly sending inappropriate messages to Jill Kelley, a woman who has been linked to the Petraeus scandal.
Allen, who is the commander of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force, has denied any wrongdoing, a senior defense official said. Some details about Allen, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, came from a terse overnight statement by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation referred to the Department of Defense a matter involving General John Allen, Commander of the International Security Assistance Force (or ISAF) in Afghanistan,” part of the statement said. “Today, the secretary directed that the matter be referred to the Inspector General of the Department of Defense for investigation.”
A defense official told CNN there is a “distinct possibility” that the investigation into Allen is connected to the investigation that led to the resignation of Petraeus.
Allen will still retain his position as the commander of ISAF as the investigation continues, the Pentagon said.
But Panetta asked that Allen’s nomination to become NATO’s supreme allied commander be put on hold, the statement said.
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