This week, four-star general David Petraeus resigned from his role as director of the CIA because of an extramarital affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell. The affair was uncovered by the FBI, who had been pursuing a separation investigation—and AP now reports that Broadwell sent "harassing" emails to 37-year-old Jill Kelley, a female State Department liaison to the military's Joint Special Operations Command, whose job required that she stay in close contact with Petraeus.
Those emails, which indicated that "Broadwell perceived the other woman as a threat to her relationship with Petraeus," frightened the woman so much she contacted the FBI for help. One of the Post's sources confirmed Kelly and Petraeus are friends, and said she saw him often.
It's unknown whether Kelly also had a relationship with Petraeus, or if that was just what Broadwell perceived it to be. Officials previously said "the two women seemed to be competing for Mr. Petraeus’s loyalty, if not his affection," and the NY Post spoke to a government official who says the emails from Broadwell said things like “I know what you did,” “back off” and “stay away from my guy."
The emails weren't the only way that the FBI were alerted to something between Petraeus and Broadwell. According to Fox News, an FBI whistle-blower contacted GOP Rep. Dave Reichert who then told House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, who was then put in touch with FBI Director Robert Mueller. Cantor staffers said they didn't immediately tell the House Intelligence Committee or chamber leaders because they didn't know whether the tip was credible, so they passed it on to the FBI.
Lawmakers have questioned the FBI's handling of the investigation, because it was conducted without the knowledge of officials in the White House or Congress. Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, who leads the Senate Intelligence Committee, said she first learned of Petraeus' affair from the media. "It was like a lightning bolt," Feinstein told "Fox News Sunday." And it affected her plans to have Petraeus testify about the Benghazi attacks on September 11th: "We are very much able to keep things in a classified setting. At least if you know, you can begin to think and then to plan. And, of course, we have not had that opportunity."
GOP Rep. Peter King, chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, told CNN’s “State of the Union" that he wants an investigation into the investigation: “It seems this has been going on for several months, and yet now it appears that they’re saying the F.B.I. did not realize until Election Day that General Petraeus was involved," he said. "It just doesn’t add up...The timeline has to be looked at and analyzed. Because obviously this was a matter involving a potential compromise of security and the president should have been told about it at the earliest stage.”
Meanwhile, the NY Times Magazine editor Hugo Lindgren denied that the Ethicist column from July 13th was written by Broadwell's husband: "This @theethicist column nyti.ms/Scgf8j (2nd Q) is NOT about the Petraeus affair, based on our factchecking. Strange, I know." Which means there's ANOTHER high ranking official who could be in for a rude public awakening at some point.