Extramarital Affair Leads to the Downfall of CIA Chief, Petraeus

David H. Petraeus, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the United States of America, and one of the topmost distinguished figures in America’s modern military and intelligence community, resigned from his prestigious post, on Friday, due to his involvement in an extra-marital affair with his biographer Paula Broadwell.

Mr. Petraeus was heard lamenting his abrupt resignation where he said, “After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair.”

The FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) initially launched an investigation when Ms. Kelly (the other woman who serves as an unpaid social liaison to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa) started receiving threatening and offensive emails. She passed on this information to a friend in the FBI and so began the probing.

Who knew that at the end of this trail lay a very deplorable crime that would not only lead to the downfall of one of America’s most celebrated military and intelligence leaders, but also shame the people involved and the rest of America?

The FBI dived into the examination of these emails, when they stumbled across the personal crimes David Petraeus was committing.

The harassing emails that Ms. Kelly was receiving were in fact, from Mr. Petraeus’ mistress, which ultimately revealed the secrets they were trying to hide under the rug.

Committing an extramarital affair is no doubt an immoral act, but does it deserve such severe professional ramifications?

Boys, after all, will be boys- many men out there must be involved in affairs like these, then why condemn a military personnel so harshly?

One can compare this scandal  to the political sex scandal that Bill Clinton was entwined in; in the year 1998. His sexual relationship with a 22–year- old Monica Lewinsky, this affair led to him foregoing his Presidential position.

According to the National Review Online, “The Code of Federal Regulations (Title 32, Chapter 1, Part 147) makes clear that sexual behavior is a security concern. A person may lose a security clearance for “personal conduct or concealment of information that may increase an individual’s vulnerability to coercion, exploitation, or duress, such as engaging in activities which, if know, may affect the person’s personal, professional, or community standing or render the person susceptible to blackmail.”

Blackmail has, from what it seems like, dragged Mr. Petraeus down. According to the above mentioned newspaper, if the former Military and Intelligence leader had simply gone to the CIA’s security chief and admitted his personal fallacy, it would have saved him a bag full of face. After all, to each his own, when it comes to one’s personal life.

From what can be seen, David Petraeus angered Ms. Broadwell, which made her to send uncivil emails to Ms. Kelly, threatened that she had to fight for her lover’s affections.

In spite of the scandalous downfall of Bill Clinton, a decade ago, one can see that he hasn’t moved out of the political sphere as he was found supporting President Barack Obama during his re-election period. Possibly, this isn’t the end of the road for Mr.Petraeus but just a bump to bounce back from.

Shreya Kalra

Image Source [http://www.flickr.com/photos/hectoralejandro/4288975013/]