Obama’s Last Words on Petraeus Scandal

Recap of CIA Director, David Patraeus’ scandal and resignation

On Nov. 9, David Petraeus, the director of the CIA, resigned from his position due to his affair with Paula Broadwell, a National security analyst and co-author of the book, All In: The Education of General David Patraeus. Recently, President Obama discussed the scandal, saying that there is “no evidence” that Petraeus created a gap in national security. When Petraeus first offered to resign, Obama refused. Although Obama didn’t agree with his decision to resign, the president eventually accepted his offer.

Petraeus’ affair with Broadwell occurred not too long after he was sworn in as CIA director on Sept. 6, 2011. The affair, lasting about a year, all began when Broadwell met Petraeus at a Harvard University event, where Broadwell was in the midst of earning her doctorate degree in public policy. She decided to complete a case study on Petraeus’ position. In 2010, Petraeus was commander of the U.S. Central Command in Tampa, Fla., and led the war in Afghanistan, where Broadwell visited him.

The scandal began to unfold publicly after Jill Kelley, a supporter of the military and also a good friend of the Petraeus family, alerted the FBI about “harassing emails” she received from Broadwell. The emails included information about Petraeus and his actions that were unknown to the public.

According to the investigators, no criminal or illegal activity was released or displayed in these emails. However, “intimate” emails from Broadwell were discovered in Petraeus’ inbox which also attested as evidence of their affair. In an interview, Patraeus claims that he never discussed classified information with Broadwell. Broadwell clarified in her interview that she received classified information from someone else. Both Broadwell and Petraeus were married at the time of their affair.

“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,” said Petraeus.

After President Obama was notified about the Petraeus scandal, Obama said, “[Petraeus] has provided this country extraordinary service. My hope right now is that he and his family are able to move on and that this ends up being a single side-note on what has otherwise been an extraordinary career.” Obama no longer wishes to discuss the scandal, nor did he want Petreaus to resign at the age of 60.