CIA Chief Petraeus resigns due to extramarital affair

Central Intelligence Agency Director David Petraeus (Reuters/Jason Reed)

CIA Director David Petraeus resigned after admitting to an extramarital affair. The FBI initially suspected a security breach when threatening emails mentioning Petraeus sent by his mistress to an unidentified third party were revealed in a probe.

Petraeus, age 60, released a statement on Friday obtained by CNN confirming that his resignation has already been accepted by US President Barack Obama, who nominated him to replace General Stanley A. McChrystal as the commander of US Forces in Afghanistan in June 2010. A four-star general, Petraeus retired from the Army in August 2011 and was sworn in as new CIA chief one month later.

According to the statement, Petraeus’ stepping down is due to personal reasons, namely an affair he now admits to having outside of his relationship with his wife.

“After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment from engaging in an extramarital affair,” writes Petraeus. “Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours.”

Officials have identified the woman as Paula Broadwell, a reserve Army officer who co-wrote Petraeus’ biography.

The two met in 2006, when Broadwell was a Harvard graduate student and Petraeus was a lieutenant colonel working on a counterinsurgency manual. He was at Harvard to deliver a speech, according to AP.

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