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La Repubblica, Italy

CIA Director Petraeus Submits
Resignation Letter to Obama:
“I Cheated on My Wife”



By Angelo Aquaro

Translated By Linda Merlo

9 November 2012

Edited by Jonathan Douglas


Italy - La Repubblica - Original Article (Italian)

A few hours after the president's re-election, the first big trouble [began] for the administration: the former general, who led the war in Afghanistan and went on to direct intelligence, has just resigned. In his resignation letter, accepted by Obama, is a confession of "unacceptable behavior." The lover is said to be his biographer.

A lover of the head of the CIA, a scandal for the recently re-elected Barack Obama, a most inglorious end for Chief David Petraeus, the man of victory in Iraq and the [cause of the] end of the war in Afghanistan. This disruption is greater than an earthquake for America. He's leaving his post as the head of the CIA; he's leaving his post as the commander of the counter-terrorism forces only a year after Osama bin Laden's death, a month after the tragic return of al-Qaeda in the Middle East, with the killer Benghazi onslaught that resulted in the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens and a controversy over security, which threatened to burn Barack's return to the White House.

"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.” That's how the brilliant career of the generalissimo ends when this case and the chaos in Benghazi were actually in danger of being compromised — so much so that it's enough to give breath to all kinds of conspiracy theories. Now probably taking his place is Mike Morrell, Petraeus' deputy, a man who has served a long time at the agency in Langley, the man who knows the secrets of the past two decades of America. Morrell was traveling with President George W. Bush on that cursed September 11, in 2011 [sic]. It was Morrell in Barack Obama's situation room when bin Laden was captured and killed that blessed May 1, 2011.

“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,” reads Petraeus' resignation letter. And after the ceremonious thanks is the bitter conclusion: "Teddy Roosevelt once observed that life's greatest gift is the opportunity to work hard at work worth doing. I will never stop regretting the circumstances that brought my work to an end."

According to Slate magazine, Petraeus' mistress is Paula Broadwell, his biographer, author* of the book “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.”

Right away, Obama thanked the general for his "outstanding service" to the nation. The four-star general was married to another generalissimo's daughter — Holly Knowlton, the daughter of William Knowlton, who was commander of the very prestigious West Point Academy. After a life in arms (the couple's only son was also in the army) and the campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, conducted in the name of the doctrine of "counter-insurgency" of which the general was a theorist and an actuator, the doors of the CIA then opened to Petraeus in the ballet of chairs that brought the former head of the agency, Leon Panetta, to the Pentagon position vacated by Bob Gates.

The bomb has exploded now in the aftermath of the Benghazi case; while the CIA is obviously tied up by working on the scorching front of Iran, who wants nuclear power, it adds further chaos to the Obama administration, which was already preparing for Hillary Clinton's replacement as secretary of state. For a recently re-elected Barack, the troubles never end.

And in the margins of the Petraeus case, a similar case erupted in the military corporation Lockheed: The future for Christopher Kubasik, who resigned for having "violated the code of ethics of the company" by engaging in a personal relationship with a subordinate. Taking his place is a woman, Marillyn Hewson, current vice-president for electronic systems.

*Editor’s Note: Paula Broadwell is officially listed as a co-author of “All In” with Vernon Loeb.



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