Getting The Shaft: Mining CEO Who Reportedly Forced Workers to Go To Romney Rally Responded To Obama’s Election With A Prayer and Layoffs

The Chairman and Chief Executive Office of Murray Energy, Robert E. Murphy became notorious during the presidential campaign by allegedly forcing workers to go to a Romney rally. Now, Murray has responded to President Obama’s re-election with a prayer and dozens of layoffs.

The Ohio CEO declared that the reelection would continue a “war on coal” and announced a time for prayer and firings — proclaiming “Lord, please forgive me and anyone with me in Murray Energy Corp. for the decisions that we are now forced to make to preserve the very existence of any of the enterprises that you have helped us build.” It appears that he “did not build that” alone, to use an Obama phrase.

Murray then broke away from a request for the grace of God to laid off 54 people at American Coal, one of his subsidiary companies, and 102 at Utah American Energy.

You may recall Murray from the August 2007 mine collapse where six miners were trapped at the Crandall Canyon Mine in Utah.

Later, the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) hit the mine with its highest penalty for coal mine safety violations, $1.85 million. Murray would ultimately lobby heavily against new procedures needed to avoid such deaths in the future.

The employees this week were able to walk out of Murray’s company — a certain improvement. However, before being kicked out, the employees were given Murray’s prayer as solace on their way out the door:

Dear Lord:

The American people have made their choice. They have decided that America must change its course, away from the principals of our Founders. And, away from the idea of individual freedom and individual responsibility. Away from capitalism, economic responsibility, and personal acceptance.

We are a Country in favor of redistribution, national weakness and reduced standard of living and lower and lower levels of personal freedom.

My regret, Lord, is that our young people, including those in my own family, never will know what America was like or might have been. They will pay the price in their reduced standard of living and, most especially, reduced freedom.

The takers outvoted the producers. In response to this, I have turned to my Bible and in II Peter, Chapter 1, verses 4-9 it says, “To faith we are to add goodness; to goodness, knowledge; to knowledge, self control; to self control, perseverance; to perseverance, godliness; to godliness, kindness; to brotherly kindness, love.”

Lord, please forgive me and anyone with me in Murray Energy Corp. for the decisions that we are now forced to make to preserve the very existence of any of the enterprises that you have helped us build. We ask for your guidance in this drastic time with the drastic decisions that will be made to have any hope of our survival as an American business enterprise.


Of course, he could not fire the “young people” in his “own family.” This is a familiar lament among some Romney supporters, including one at a Romney fundraiser at the Hamptons who stated:

“I don’t think the common person is getting it. Nobody understands why Obama is hurting them.
“We’ve got the message,” she added. “But my college kid, the baby sitters, the nails ladies — everybody who’s got the right to vote — they don’t understand what’s going on. I just think if you’re lower income — one, you’re not as educated, two, they don’t understand how it works, they don’t understand how the systems work, they don’t understand the impact.”

He is also not alone in threatening or actually firing people if Obama won. Indeed, a Utah CEO fired over 100 people and blamed it on Obama’s reelection. However, Murray does this all with a bit more religious fervor.

Source: Washington Post

225 thoughts on “Getting The Shaft: Mining CEO Who Reportedly Forced Workers to Go To Romney Rally Responded To Obama’s Election With A Prayer and Layoffs

  1. he is nuts, as we all are to some degree, and if you work for him you either put up with it or find another job. he has the right to treat his workers any way he wants. you have the right to not work for him.

  2. Yes Raff, this is the guy. If you go to southeast Ohio you probably would still see the yard signs about Obama’s war in coal that end with Fire Obama. I have a hunch that Murray paid for tens of thousands of these signs. Maybe someone can comment on the EPA regs concerning coal but it seems the real threat to coal is cheap natural gas due to fracking.

  3. The asshat has proven *why* people should have voted against Romney (not necessarily _for_ Obama): because greedy CEOs would try to get away – and have gotten away with – criminal and unethical behaviour.

    Ask youself this: Would he have fired employees if Romney had won to cut costs and increase profits? Of course he would. Why pay two people when you can have one person (desperate to keep his job) do the work of two people for the same wage?

  4. Can somebody walk me through this- what specific law or tax makes laying off productive employees financially beneficial?

    Is it the prospect of Clinton-era marginal tax rates? The prospect of OSHA safety regulations?

    Which ones? Lets hear an accounting here, of his actions.

  5. I just read Patreus resigned because he was involved in an extramarital affair. Poor judgement, honorable remedy. Being a man who took the vow of marriage every bit as solemn as being sworn under oath, actually more so, it’s heartening to see we had a man do the right thing here. He’ll obviously never be a politician.

  6. Wow, God is just beseiged with prayers for forgiveness. Wow, what a burden! This particular one reminds me of two others he often hears:
    Dear Lord:
    This child has been disobedient. My regret, Lord, is that this child, who has transgressed, does not yet realize why your word, represented to this child through my authority, must be obeyed for all our sakes. He will have to pay the price in the future for his disobedience, but at this point in his life, I am responsible to you for making sure he tries to l learn better ways.

    He wants to be given all the wonderful benefits of your World without doing what you require of him, and this puts me in a terrible position, but I will not forsake the sacred trust you have placed in me by giving me this child. I have turned to my Bible and in II Peter, Chapter 1, verses 4-9 it says, “To faith we are to add goodness; to goodness, knowledge; to knowledge, self control; to self control, perseverance; to perseverance, godliness; to godliness, kindness; to brotherly kindness, love.” So I must spare not the rod in administering thy love to this child.

    Lord, please forgive me for the decision that I am now forced to make to preserve the very existence of any of the family that you have blessed me with. I thank you for for your guidance in this drastic time with the drastic decision that will be made to have any hope of our survival as an American family.

    Amen. (whereupon proceed to beat the kid until the cows come home)
    ————————- and ————————

    Dear Lord:

    Once again, Lord, my wife has abandoned your teachings and behaved wrongly. My regret, Lord, is that this woman, who has transgressed, does not yet realize why your word, represented to her through my authority, must be obeyed for all our sakes. She may pay the price in the future for her ungodly conduct, but at this point in his life, I am responsible to you for making sure she tries to l learn better ways.

    She wants to be given all the wonderful benefits of your World without doing what you require of her as the wife and mother in an American family, and this puts me in a terrible position, but I will not forsake the sacred trust you have placed in me by giving me this woman. I have turned to my Bible and in I Peter 3:1-6, I have read: “Wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your respectful and pure conduct. Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves, by submitting to their own husbands, …”

    Lord, please forgive me for the decision that I am now forced to make to preserve the very existence of any of the family that you have blessed me with. I thank you for for your guidance in this drastic time with the drastic decision that will be made to have any hope of our survival as an American family.

    Amen. (whereupon proceed to beat the wicked woman until she learns)

    Indeed, prayer is the backbone of our world.

    Just a little evil reminder of George Zimmerman’s prayer:

    “Dear Lord, please bring your love into the hearts of Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Benjamin Crump, Natalie Jackson, the Fulton-Martin family and all the media, so they will see your ways clearly and so they will correct their behavior and so they will stop their regrettable campaign to interfere in your plan for me to have no further problems from the events of 2/26/2012 when I tried to help the police prevent suspicious conduct from occurring in RTL, Amen.”

    Yes yes, all our good behavior is obviously blessed by God.

  7. OT:

    Thanks, nick.

    Here is Petraeus’ resignation letter:

    HEADQUARTERS Central Intelligence Agency

    9 November 2012

    Yesterday afternoon, I went to the White House and asked the President to be allowed, for personal reasons, to resign from my position as D/CIA. 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. This afternoon, the President graciously accepted my resignation.

    As I depart Langley, I want you to know that it has been the greatest of privileges to have served with you, the officers of our Nation’s Silent Service, a work force that is truly exceptional in every regard. Indeed, you did extraordinary work on a host of critical missions during my time as director, and I am deeply grateful to you for that.

    Teddy Roosevelt once observed that life’s greatest gift is the opportunity to work hard at work worth doing. I will always treasure my opportunity to have done that with you and I will always regret the circumstances that brought that work with you to an end.

    Thank you for your extraordinary service to our country, and best wishes for continued success in the important endeavors that lie ahead for our country and our Agency.

    With admiration and appreciation,

    David H. Petraeus


    Hmmm… One has to wonder. More to this than meets the eye?

  8. AP, I concur w/ your “more than meets the eye.” This may make the Benghazi hearing a bit more interesting.

  9. Dear lord of the coal,

    We have been destroying the Earth by your command.

    The Bully Religion’s High Priest has resigned because he violated that sacred religion’s duty to kill, maim, and destroy the infidels without having any sexual affairs.

    So sayeth lord of coal and blood.

    Good bye Petro-us, good bye peasants.

    Bishop Black Gold over and out.

  10. I think Murray and other rich A-holes (they aren’t all a-holes) who supposedly lean on God (likely, lying to themselves as a way to try to sleep at night), of another religious verse.

    “For it is said, that it is harder for a rich man to get into heaven than for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle…”

  11. AP, Thanks. I don’t know much about Morell, but I love his mushrooms[morel..I know]. With Panetta[I always think pancetta], Clinton[pizza lover] probably leaving and Patreus resigning it is a difficult time. I hope Obama replaces these folks w/ good people quickly. I’m real hungry now.

  12. lol, nick… thanks — i’m hungry now, too. :-)

    Regarding Obama replacing them quickly: Yes.

    From the McGovern piece:

    “Like many senior CIA officials in recent years, Morell’s record is checkered, at best. He held key jobs in intelligence analysis over the past decade as the CIA often served as a handmaiden to the war propagandists.

    As for Michael Morell, as with many other successful CIA careerists, his strongest suit seemed to be pleasing his boss and not antagonizing the White House. If past is precedent, his loyalty will be to Petraeus, not necessarily to the truth.

    Forgive me if my thinking about loyalty to the facts seems “obsolete” or “quaint” – or if it seems unfair to expect CIA analysts to put their careers on the line when politicians and ideologues are misleading the nation to war – but those were the principles that analysts of my generation tried to uphold.

    The recent tendency at CIA to give politicians what they want to hear rather than the hard truth is not healthy for the Republic that we were all sworn to serve.

    And, if Petraeus’s own past is precedent, loyalty to the four-star general will not always be synonymous with loyalty to the truth.”

  13. Cheap natural gas drives down coal industry

    Is coal doomed? The dirty yet abundant energy source has had some rough patches before, but nothing like this.

    In 1985, coal accounted for 57 percent of all power generated in the United States. Last year, it was 42 percent. The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates it will fall to 40 percent this year. Prices for Appalachian coal are down 24 percent over the past 12 months; for coal from the Powder River Basin in Montana and Wyoming, they’re down 45 percent.

  14. AP, Bingo again, regarding the CIA being yes men to the prez. I continually hear about Obama that he doesn’t like conflict “No Drama” Obama. Well, strong leaders want conflict. Lincoln’s cabinets were extremely contentious. My take on Patreus is he was every bit as smart as Obama and maybe not a yes man. I don’t see how anyone cannot be suspicious of this timing. But I’m a patient man..the truth will come out eventually.

  15. nick and AP,
    Do you really think Gen. Petraeus was forced out? Who in their right mind would write in a resignation letter that he was resigning because he had an extra marital affair if he didn’t have one?? Tin foil time.

  16. Nick, you think Obama forced him out? I’m sure anything is possible, but don’t get the motivation. Seems to me that having Patreus inside the tent is best for Obama politically. Having an affair places oneself in a vulnerable position for such an extremely sensitive job. In other words, while it seems quite drastic for your average Congressman or cabinet head to resign over an affair, it doesn’t seem as extreme for CIA head to do so. I do wonder if there’s more to the story, but my mind wonders to whether there’s some cover up of the affair or money or other improper conduct involved that makes it worse than a simple affair.

  17. rafflaw, Please read what was’s the timing. I don’t doubt he had an affair, I’m questioning the timing a few days after the election. Early reports are this affair occurred a while ago. And, if you read what I said, I’m patient and know it will take time to know the WHOLE truth. The fact that you’re not suspicious is curious @ best.

  18. Waldo, Patreus is an honorable man. I know politicians would not resign in this situation. However, being the Director of the CIA has a higher code which Patreus recognized and honored. As I just said to rafflaw, I don’t know what’s going on. But, I was trained to spot red flags. This is a red flag. Time will tell.

  19. Interesting prayer, I wonder how god feels about being pimped out for crass political purposes by a guy that would rather kill his workers than spend a couple of bucks on safety measures? The layoffs were coming no matter who got elected (good post Nal) but this way he gets to seed the political ground for his own purposes. The only justice for a man like that is to leave him at the bottom of a deep shaft, butt-deep in cold water and bad air until nature takes its course. Karma.

    Malisha, stay away from those christian discipline sites, they will make you crazy. I ended up surfing those sites a couple of times and they were revolting. As a matter of preserving my (already fragile) mental health I won’t go back:-)

  20. I did read the whole thing nick. Time will tell, but there is no red flag here. I am sure he waited until after the election, but he is no better or worse than the politicians that cheat on their wives. If he was so honorable, why the affair to begin with?? If he was forced out it was because of the affair.

  21. Not to diminish the unreasonableness of this CEO’s behavior, (I don’t see how the economic situation in the business could change so rapidly just based on the election of few days ago and the need to make layoffs) But the below is very disturbing on how mining labor sometimes gets treated in this world.

    The video on the below link contains some rather disturbing images so you might take this into consideration.

    The setting nears a Platinum mine just out of Johannesburg, South Afrika. Miners there went on strike and it turned violent. Previously two police officers were murdered. The strike escalated and a group of strikers rushed on police forces who cut them down with submachines guns. Over 30 strikers were killed. (Later news reports were that machete knives were planted on many of the victims by the police.) This was according to the reporters the worse police shooting of civilians since apartheid ended.

    An advert might preceed the video. Sorry, but the video is in German.

  22. When did the affair begin, when did it end (if it is over)? I don’t give a phlying phuck where he sticks his dick as long as in doing so he did not compromise the security of the United States of America. Thus it is very important to know when did the affair begin, when did it end (if it is over)?

    His wife and children are his problem or he is theirs. He is only my problem if the nation was made vulnerable by his phucking habits.

  23. Quote of the Day: America’s Billionaires are Pissed Off at Karl Rove

    —By Kevin Drum
    | Wed Nov. 7, 2012 10:30 PM PST


    Via Atrios, this is pretty funny:

    “The billionaire donors I hear are livid,” one Republican operative told The Huffington Post. “There is some holy hell to pay. Karl Rove has a lot of explaining to do … I don’t know how you tell your donors that we spent $390 million and got nothing.”….Rove was forced to defend his group’s expenditures live on Fox News on Tuesday night, and will hold a briefing with top donors on Thursday, according to Politico.

    If conservative billionaires are looking for something else to be mad about, I’d recommend the Romney campaign’s apparent habit of paying about 50 percent more for TV spots than the Obama campaign. That helped line the pockets of the consultants who both recommended the buys and got the commissions for placing the spots, but it didn’t do much to win the election.

    In the end, it turned out that one side ran its campaign like a business, while the other side ran its like a local PTA. Ironically, it was the ex-community organizer who did the former and the ex-CEO of Bain Capital who did the latter. Mother Jones:)

  24. rafflaw, He is flawed, as are we all. “Let he who is w/o sin cast the first stone.” However, he did the honorable thing in resigning.

    blouise17, You ask an important question..who was the mistress? Was she someone who could have had ties to another country? However, if you’re the head of the CIA you have the highest standard of conduct expected. Being a libertarian, I don’t care if people f@ck chickens. And, we’re all assuming the affair was hetero. Statistically that’s a good bet. But, we don’t know. As I’ll keep saying, we know virtually nothing @ this point. I’m smelling fall guy on Benghazi, but that’s a shoot from the hip guess..that’s all.

  25. Where is it written that a man who has had an affair is an honorable man? I have no doubt he resigned because his “honorable” affair was going to come out. Patraeous lied to Congress and the American people. His affair is no surprise. He never should have been appointed in the first place.

    As to the holy CEO, God has had it with you and Christ wants his religion back. It is pretty clear that this guy is a liar and some might say a murderer.
    It is time the Labor Board and the mining regulators start taking these guys on. I think the Obama excuse was crafted to get some negative mileage against the president for something he intended to do anyway.

  26. Petreaus had an affair with his biographer. No wonder he was asleep at the wheel during Benghazi. His surges in Iraq and Afghanistan did not work so well either. Obama can get someone better.

  27. Seems like the “law of compensation” has worked in one “situation” discussed here, but needs to get cracking in the other…

  28. Maybe it just keeps Obama from having to fire him after he testifies. Having extra maritial sex didn’t stop Clinton or Edwards.

  29. Srefanie,

    So if all employers decide to run sweatshops with slave wages and conditions, we employess can either accept that or do what??????? We used to call them unions, and then Reagan sabotaged them. Remember?

    Any answer?

  30. Now, I am not a legal advisor, but being that he threatened an action that he would let go any employee that voted for Obama, and has now actually carried through on that threat, without any time to pass to show that the election of Obama has hurt of hindered his business, isn’t that election tampering?? Can’t he be charged?

  31. AP,

    I roll down to answer your question directly after reading it:
    “Hmmm… One has to wonder. More to this than meets the eye?”


    1) The CIA mandarins sabotaged him as being uncomfortable to their way of life. He is military
    not accustomed to inefficiency, moral degeneration, risk avoidance as primary mission of all supervisors, and making large demonstrations and noises and calling them successful missions. All have 60 yaars as established practice at the CIA.

    2) He was found to be behind the Benghazi “Al Quaeda” raid on the consulate, to Romney’s immediate advantage for his press release 2 minutes after Hillary. Somebody fingered Petraeus.

    3) It was an FBI sting operation for reason number 2, can’t have a traitor against the Prez left there to plan the next assassinations. Honey buckets still work very well, especially on those who are accustomed to lots of free nucky.

    4) Somebody found and has leaked proof that he was running the export of the dope from Afghanistan, and they had to find a less greasy reason to ease him out the door. It was not cynanide and he took it.
    He’ll be hired by a corp in 2 weeks, quietly.

  32. Rafflaw,

    It is better than a treason trial. Ii is also a personal matter that is accepted and will not readily be investigated. So they gave him a way out. He
    could not refuse it.

  33. I’m thinking that maybe some lawyer will take those fired employees into a plaintiffs’ group for a class action for wrongful discharge based on 42 USC 1983, depriving them of their property interests under color of the state law that allows him to engage in “employment at will” without showing that he HAD to fire them or that they did anything wrong. Who knows? Anybody getting any remedy for anything is becoming more and more difficult.

  34. SWM, Patreus is not going to testify this week as scheduled. If you think he won’t testify @ all I have some land in Florida to sell you. And, to say the surge in Iraq didn’t work is flat ass wrong. Even Obama who voted against it admitted it was a success. It was inspired and superbly orchestrated. And SWM, looks like you’re complicit in the “fall guy” plan. How in the hell do you know he was asleep @ the switch. He may have been, but do you have classified sources. Sell that horseshit to someone else. We don’t know shit @ this point but this is America..spin away.

  35. Blouise and others,

    Your comment suggests this answer. There used to be so much foreign nucky trying to establish liasons with men (and some homosexual agents too) that all officers
    in the CIA are required to report any new acquaintance that “they leave their toothbrush with” to the company.
    Contact by a foreign person required immediate report and justification, and it was usually declared a forbidden contact.

    Now this could be another “honey bucket” in exchange for favors by a foreign service, arranged to get him out—he was too good.

    Obviously, CIA failed in their protection service done normally for the top brass.

  36. The next time I throw a shovel of coal into the furnace I will think of this guy. Wait, we got rid of that furnace in 1956. It was something to do with air pollution in Saint Louis. Peabody Coal is a good buy on the stock market right now by the way. I like Arch Coal as well. I thnk steel mills steel need this stuff.

  37. Do you really think Gen. Petraeus was forced out? Who in their right mind would write in a resignation letter that he was resigning because he had an extra marital affair if he didn’t have one?? Tin foil time. -rafflaw

    1) I didn’t say that he was forced out.

    2) I didn’t say that he didn’t have an extramarital affair.

    3) As for “tin foil time?” I’m grilling and happen to be using it on the barbie, as I type. (…a tired, old cliche, the “tin foil” thing.)

  38. Ambinder says:

    “His brief tenure at the CIA had been shadowed in recent weeks by the terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, which led to the death of four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens. The CIA had a far bigger “annex” next to the consulate that reportedly housed agents charged with securing stray rockets and missiles used by the regime of deposed strongman Moammar Gadhafi. Questions have been raised as to whether the CIA and Petraeus bungled security at the consulate.

    Petraeus was scheduled to testify before Congress next week. With his resignation, he will no longer do so. The timing of Petraeus’ resignation, especially coming on the heels of Obama’s re-election, has already led many conservative commentators to suggest that it is all somehow connected to Benghazi.”

    What the phuck did I write many days ago, saying that the consulate was a death trap in terms of security. Again I will repeat the fact that the firing and
    fireworks went on for 3 hours in total, as reported to Washington. Now we learn that the CIA had an annnex next door. WTF were they doing? All of them could not have been stoned or doing the attack. So that will really be an interesting investigation.

    Why can not Congress call him now on the Benghazi question? (See Ambinder above quote) Seem weird to me. It is not a trial but an investigation.

  39. AP, Bingo again. He’s stale as year old bread w/ his tired cliches. His usual comment is, “I agree w/ Gene.” After that he’s hopelessly lost.

  40. Somma u folks don’t watch enough Covert Affairs episodes do ya?

    The law of that jungle is “thou shalt not screw enemy spies doods and doodettes.

  41. Borowitz is on the money although he won’t point and call it for what it is as he is a responsible journalist.

    She is a Russian spy or somebody’s.

    B says:

    “As a journalist, she was embedded with his team in Afghanistan. They seem to have gone running together a great deal.

    Read more:

    Now you don’t get that kind of placement unless somebody arranges it. And it was either him or her backers. Whichever, our military counterintelligence people did not do their work. If Petraeus wanted to have his nucky close at hand, calling her embedded is a cute way to do it and a good pun.

  42. Anonymously Posted and Nick Spinelli,

    I’ve been saying this about Rafflaw for over a year now. He only say what GeneH says or what Messpo says, or OS says, etc ad infinitum. But nasty Idealist707 get skit for it.

    The first hhing he said to me was “tinfoil hat” and show me proof. Hasn’t changed in over a year. He is usually brief which is nice in itself.

  43. Nick S,

    it is your privilege to kick ass but why SwM? And why don’t you get off your “let’s wait and see—holier than thou horse” and join she and us in chasing scandals.

    First you defended mom who got cavity searched and was not “mother of the mont” as you called her. That was find, she needed it.
    Even if Insane GeneH gave you skit for it today. How his mind does not work we can leave aside for now.

    But leave your principles and joined the fun following the media’s chase for excitement. People were falling asleep after the election. Ratings were falling. Dicks were not rising in the couch sofas.

    Don’t kick the ladies. Or did she kick first?

    NOW, you can tell me off. –

  44. Nick, I do think that knowingly violating the CIA code of ethics while at the same time having knowledge that your girlfriend is being investigated by the FBI for possible hacking of your emails is a major distraction. Have you ever heard the words “security breach”? Yes Petraeus will eventually be called but hopefully Feinstein will conduct her hearings better than that clown Issa. His quickly turned into the usual fiasco,

  45. Amazing absolutely amazing….. Now, how are they justifying this….. I guess the same principal that Romney would use to fire FEMA works….

  46. In this social networking smart-phone age, why can this guy expect to do something like this and avoid the appropriate public shaming?

    Don’t any of his former employees or their supporters have the motivation and ability to start a Facebook page or something and keep the truth hanging around his neck until it is good and ripe?

    If not now, when?

  47. AP,

    Thanks for the answer on Broadwell. Like Jon Stewart implied: Did you ever stop at mile 15 to get the breath to do an interview (and maybe do something else after yyou had hung off his security detail?)?

    Did you see her muscles, former military, triathlon!

    Moscow sure trains their spies well. Most of them in the FBI/CIA were fat couch potatoes only interested in money. She is as her book title says: All In. (for it)

    Maybe she had Mata Hari in mind when she started her career. She contacted Moscow instead of being recruited. She had her hubby in the audience. Was he unknowing of the affair? So many questions and so much scandal.

    This is a serial that will last for 3 months and get us past the idiot phase of post-erection Congress, with all those playlets to ignore, while laws expire.

    Good night all, 3AM. Gotta get back to my circadian clock again.

  48. SwM,

    At times like these I wish that I knew more. When will the first timeline come up?

    So what is the investigation all about, if not Benghazi?
    And what is the connection to P and B and who blew the whistle on the compromised PC.

    Don’t waste your time, I must learn to do my own research. Thanks for the tip.

    (I once left a doc in the stall in the men’s room—-bad boy. Only confidential, Sergeants don’t let Lts go out with Secret and TS in their grubby hands.)

    Time to bed now, old man tired. G’night.

  49. SWM, re glad big money lost. I agree but I heard a discussion last night that postulated that he lack of obvious effectiveness of the big money would be used as a rationale for retaining Citizens United un-regulated. Also, the less obvious influences like making the other side scramble for more money, campaign more and spend less time actually working etc. were not being talked about.

  50. SWM, I agree w/ you on ISSA. Again, Patreus may have been preoccupied and not on top of his duties, but it’s merely a guess @ this point. Here’s my thinking. This attack @ Benghazi happened on 9/11. I believe, or @ least I would hope, all defense people, CIA, FBI, are on full duty and alert that day annually. However, I also know the govt. Unlike you, SWM, I have high regard for Patreus and so does our president and virtually everyone who knows him. So, I don’t want to see him be the sacrificial lamb. Conversely, if he f@cked up I want to know that also and see justice served.

    ID, I don’t believe I “kicked” SWM. If I did I know she would say so and she hasn’t. If you want to chase the scandal, knock yourself out..this is America, well here it is. You’re a Swede!! I am not above doing that also, but I get queezy on matters as serious as this. To each their own, paisan.

  51. SWM, I think you know that if I did “kick” you that you should say so. I respect you and enjoy engaging w/ you..friendly and substantively. Whether I agree w/ people has little to do w/ how I think about them. I would be bored to death if I only engaged w/ people who thought like me.

  52. Petraeus didn’t impress me at all. He would write columns that dissed the Administration’s prosecution of the war(s) and blame (rightly no doubt) the mis-handling of money and guns on his superiors and the Administration. He is/was a big advocate of nation building and a whole-country approach to our wars This was the Bush administration and you know I have no love lost for them. My attitude then and now is that such actions are inappropriate, self-serving and an attempt to make policy- something precluded to the military.

    I think Obama promoted him to get him out of the limelight, shut him up so the withdrawal would be facilitated and neutralize his popularity as a general. He was like MacArthur or Patton. He couldn’t keep his mouth shut and had his own agenda. Now, with a second term, Obama can get rid of him (if the conspiracy theories are correct) and sooner is better than later.

    Petraeus should have resigned the military and made his criticism known as a civilian IMO, as should all military leaders that have fundamental disagreements with their civilian masters. I’m leaning towards ‘good riddance; later better than never.

  53. There is only one answer for a man such as this….. His body should be discovered, under a ”cave-in” at the bottom of his mine….

  54. Someone tell coal schmuck that the last month that Bushie II was in office the Dow was at about 9600. It is up 60% under Obama. So, if schmucko thinks we are going to hell can we short his stock and see if it goes down? Is it publically traded?

  55. LK,

    Did it bother you that Petraeus with his military background was placed in charge of one of the key civilian intelligence agencies? OS and I had a discussion that touched on that over dinner this evening. That relationship certainly smelled of inherent conflict of interest to me. As to your other criticisms of him, I’ll just say “Yep.”

  56. Swarthmore mom

    Petraeus was being secretly investigated by the FBI for a compromised PC, and they found his affair.


    Holy crap!!! The FBI uncovered the affair?! Do you have any idea what that means in D.C.? For the FBI to catch the Director of the CIA in a clandestine affair is bigger than big!

    Petraeus is a complete idiot … he just handed his Agency and his President a huge black eye. HUGE!

  57. Blouise,

    Yep. It is staggeringly dumb to be in that position and give your enemies – both foreign and domestic – instant leverage against you. But let’s face it, Petareus isn’t a great general/tactician/strategist and more of a politician and he always has been. Dumb is kinda par for the course with pols.

  58. Oh yeah, Blouise. Without a doubt there are some of the higher level G-men whooping it up tonight. As we’ve discussed extensively both online and off it is no secret those two groups really do hate one another. Politically this is a Grade B+/A- disaster.

  59. The FBI Has Been Investigating Petraeus’ Biographer (And Reported Mistress) Over Access To Classified Info
    Kim Bhasin
    Nov. 9, 2012

    Now, NBC is reporting that the FBI has been investigating Broadwell, fearing that she had access to some confidential information.

    From NBC News chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel on MSNBC:

    Also we have learned from law enforcement sources — law enforcement officials — that the FBI is now investigating, and this is an ongoing investigation, into Paula Broadwell.

    … The FBI investigation is seeing whether she had improper access to General Petraeus’ emails and may have had access to his … may have accidentally or deliberately had access to classified information. And so we know this investigation is taking place, and that it has identified Paula Broadwell.

    The investigation began last spring, reports Ronald Kessler at conservative magazine Newsmax.

    Kessler’s report claims that the FBI intercepted Petraeus’ emails with Broadwell, and they had included sexually explicit references, like “sex under a desk.” The pair reportedly broke up some point after Petraeus become CIA Director, but he continued sending thousands of emails to her over the past few months.

    Fox News also has some information about the investigation. It’s reporting that the FBI was originally investigating an unrelated case and happened to stumble upon Petraeus’ affair:

    The FBI had been investigating an unrelated and much broader case before stumbling on the affair. Fox News has learned that during the course of this investigation, the name of journalist and Petraeus biographer Paula Broadwell came up. The FBI followed that lead and in doing so, uncovered his affair with her. The FBI for some time was concerned that perhaps Petraeus was some sort of victim, but there has been no evidence discovered to back up such concerns.

  60. “The FBI had been investigating an unrelated and much broader case before stumbling on the affair.”

    Okay. Now that has really piqued my curiosity. What has the Feds digging at CIA? Couldn’t possible be a turf war over domestic surveillance? Inquiring minds want to know . . . especially if the CIA is out of control again.

  61. “Okay. Now that has really piqued my curiosity. What has the Feds digging at CIA? Couldn’t possible be a turf war over domestic surveillance? Inquiring minds want to know . . . especially if the CIA is out of control again.” (Gene)

    this just gets better and better … the FBI is leaking little bits and pieces

    Obama has a real mess on his hands

  62. Gene, yes it did. A lot of stuff at the highest levels of power strike me as odd and disturbing, I assumed it was another path to consolidate power among other things. The military and CIA (actually, broaden that to the entire intelligence community) have the same kind of organization culture: insular, loyalty to and within the chain of command, bigoted and antithetical to a meritocracy (in my experience), order followers, free from legal challenges and oversight for all practical purposes. You are right by implication though, in retrospect it’s way more disturbing than I ascribed to it. Personal experience lulled me into complacency in that regard.

    Most senior managers in the Intelligence community are (or were) ex military, at least on the ops side. A lot of civilians worked for Agencies (now rolled into the Intelligence community) that had as Directors Military people but the rest of the chain of command was primarily civilian. DOD Agencies all had that model. DOD and Intelligence have been merging since the late 90’s, look up “National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency” in Wikipedia. That was the beginning of a bad trend.

  63. from wikipedia

    The NGA campus, at 2.3 million square feet (214,000 m²), is the third-largest government building in the Washington Metropolitan Area, and its atrium is spacious enough to hold the Statue of Liberty.[3][4] Its budget is classified.

    can’t cut their budget if you don’t know what it is.

  64. I wonder if there are sex-sniffing dogs? Obviously the underneath sides of all those desks at the NGA campus need to be checked.

    I’m going to call HenMan. See if he wants to partner up in a new business venture … we can use the bobcats and disguise them as dogs.

  65. Blouise, If HenMan can’t partner with you maybe Newt Gingrich and Ken Starr can, If you leash them you won’t even need the dogs. (Or cats)

  66. I wonder how the axe of fate fell on these employees. I wouldn’t be surprised if this CEO just took this as an opportunity to fire those he didn’t like. I can’t help but be cynical about these CEOs. I get the sense that some are firing to communicate the wisdom of their prophecy (didn’t I tell you that Obama brings misery?) or to instill fear (do what I say or else the axe is coming for you) or both. It would be interesting to see whether there will be new hires in the near future to replace those fired. I heard a great interview on C-SPAN last night. David Cay Johnston talked about his book, The Fine Print, in which he explains how energy, Telecom, and other companies game the system so well. I’m about to buy the e-book. Sounds fascinating.

  67. If this was France it would not be news. The French response would be:: a) nice set of boobs. Lucky guy. b) Ok I will read the book. c) Keep him happy while in office. d) Did they meet in Paris?

    In watching the tv commenters last night I was struck by the mean comments by the females barking at him. Neither of the two bedmates were under age and there was no evidence that one or the other paid the other for the sex. So, no crime on our dime. Let the poor schmuck be. If he and wifeypoo break up then its none of our business. Be fair and balanced here and treat the fox like a lady.

  68. “The FBI had been investigating an unrelated and much broader case before stumbling on the affair.”

    Gene H

    That doesn’t indicate or even suggest the FBI investigation was of the CIA or anyone inside the CIA. It says the FBI was looking into an unrelated matter. An example: While Ken Starr was investigating Bill Clinton regarding “an unrelated and much broader case” (Clinton’s potential involvement in the Whitewater development), he stumbled onto the Lewinsky matter. I’m not saying your concern is baseless, but there are other viable explanations.

  69. Yes Murry or Murphy or whatever your name is, put those guys and gals on the unemployment roster. We dont need your coal.

  70. At least this FBI investigation lead to something, unlike the Arizona AG not reporting a fender bender. Patreus did a dumb thing, as we all do. But, people who cavalierly call someone “dumb” “stupid” for merely doing something dumb or stupid need to watch Forrest Gump again.

  71. Looks to me like the FBI investigation got to Broadwell. In looking at her they found the emails from Patreaus. They told Patreaus and he decided to get out in front of the scandal by announcing it himself. A couple more news cycles and it’s forgotten.

  72. “Official tells me several people who knew Petraeus got anonymous harassing emails. So investigation started. Emails then traced to Broadwell.” Martha Raddatz

  73. Raddatz is a good reporter as is Jim Martin w/ CBS. Good ol’ fashioned defense dept. straight news people. Is the Polish, Jim Mick….ski still w/ NBC. He’s also good.

  74. SMom, Yes, he needed to resign in the hopes that it would be forgotten after only a couple of news cycles. If he didn’t admit the affair he would be plagued with reporters’ questions about it until he did.

    If the investigation was of the harassing emails that lead to Broadwell, then it looks like a woman scorned getting even. We’ll see. There are more shoes to be dropped.

  75. Found this:

    MSNBC’s Richard Engel reported on Friday evening that the FBI is conducting an ongoing investigation into Broadwell to see whether she had improper access to Petraeus’ emails and may have seen classified information. Engel added that it doesn’t appear that any charges are going to be filed, and that Petraeus himself is not being investigated.

    and this:

    Broadwell, like Petraeus, graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point….

  76. How Was Petraeus’ Affair Uncovered and Did he Really Have To Resign?
    By Daniel Politi
    Posted Saturday, Nov. 10, 2012, at 10:39 AM ET

    In a town where watching powerful men and women fall from grace is a particularly perverse sport, no one in Washington seemed to be taking joy at the resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus, the man many have qualified as the best military mind in decades, after admitting he had an extramarital affair. As Slate’s Fred Kaplan has reported, the woman with whom he was having an affair was Paula Broadwell, co-author of his biography.

    There’s a bit of disagreement over how exactly the unfair was uncovered. While everyone notes the affair became public during an FBI investigation, the Wall Street Journal specifically notes that an inquiry into access to Petraeus’ Gmail account led to the belief that Broadwell, or someone close to her, tried to access his e-mail. NBC News says Broadwell is currently under an FBI investigation for “improperly trying to access his e-mail and possibly gaining access to classified information.”

    Politico, however, hears that is likely an exaggeration and that concern over access to Petraeus’ e-mail was not what initiated the investigation. McClatchy hears similar information, noting that sources say “the FBI did not investigate the author for attempting to compromise Petraeus’ computer.” According to this version it seems that, as Reuters hears, investigators stumbled across evidence of the affair while investigating news leaks. Although it’s unclear exactly why the FBI was monitoring Petraeus’ e-mail, a source tells the Washington Post, the FBI found e-mails describing the affair.

    Did Petraeus have to resign? In Foreign Policy, Thomas Ricks, who has described Petraeus as the best post-Sept. 11 commander in the U.S. military, hears that President Obama tried to talk him out of resigning. And Ricks describes Petraeus’ decision as the result of overabundance of honor: “Petraeus took the samurai route and insisted that he had done a dishonorable thing and now had to try to balance it by doing the honorable thing and stepping down as CIA director.”

    Yet it seems Petraeus didn’t really have much of a choice. It’s not just that an extramarital affair is a no-no for the intelligence community due to fears that it could be used as a tool for blackmail. But the fact that the affair was all seemingly registered in Petraeus’ personal account may have been the decisive factor since foreign hackers have been known to access e-mail of officials in sensitive posts, points out the Wall Street Journal.

  77. Petraeus admits affair, quits as CIA director
    By Jonathan S. Landay and Hannah Allam | McClatchy Newspapers

    The precise circumstances that prompted Petraeus to make his adultery public and to resign weren’t immediately known. But his statement indicated that the affair was recent. Keeping it secret could have become a potentially crippling security breach had a foreign power learned of it and used it to try to compromise or blackmail Petraeus.

    If he committed adultery while in the Army, Petraeus could have been court-martialed.

    Petraeus has been at the center of a political storm over a Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate and the CIA station in Libya’s eastern city of Benghazi since it emerged last week that two of the four Americans who were killed were former Navy SEALs on contract to the CIA as security officers. The U.S. ambassador to Libya and another State Department employee also died.

    A former aide to Petraeus who’s known the general for two decades said he’d exchanged emails with him since the scandal broke, and that Petraeus was adamantly against news of his resignation being spun into a conspiracy theory involving the Benghazi tragedy.

    “The general insists that he felt this was the right thing to do,” said the former aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation. “He insisted that this has nothing to do with Benghazi, nothing to do with Libya, nothing to do with his relationship with the president. Actually, the president took 24 hours to decide on the resignation.”

    In a statement confirming Petraeus’ departure, Obama made no reference to the reason for the resignation. He said that the retired four-star general “has provided extraordinary service to the United States for decades. By any measure, he was one of the outstanding general officers of his generation, helping our military adapt to new challenges, and leading our men and women in uniform through a remarkable period of service in Iraq and Afghanistan.”

  78. “At the agency, Petraeus presided over an expansion of the CIA’s Predator drone campaign in Yemen and was recently behind a push to expand the agency’s drone fleet. He was involved in decisions to carry out controversial strikes, including the Predator attacks last year that killed two U.S. citizens: the al-Qaeda figure Anwar al-Awlaki and his teenage son.

    Petraeus, who retired from the military last year, is still subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which classifies adultery as a crime.

    Practically speaking, however, the odds are extremely low that the military would prosecute a retired officer for having an affair, said Eugene R. Fidell, a prominent military law expert who teaches at Yale University.

    “They’re as close to zero as you can get,” Fidell said. “It would have to be a grave matter before the executive branch would prosecute a retiree.” WAPO

  79. NickS (and also SwM),
    First let me apologize to both. How to explain: LK called me donw today for doing the “let’s you and him fight”. I call it the irresistible urge to take sides in somebody’s ongoing arguments, or at best offering opionion which I have learned offers nothing and is generally ignored

    by those disagreeing. I tell myself that I am fighting this habit, but you are proof that I fail, too often.

    Now to NIckS. was just trying to prove that I was not hanging on your coattails as I was afraid some would think.

    “You’re a Swede!! ” What do you mean by that.

    As for scandal chasing, yeah I do. But I also as you do, regard it with a serious view also. But feel resigned that we will never know what lies behind it all.
    The walls are too thick, the strings are too many, and the fog is to well laid so our chances are null.

    His becoming Dir CIA could be celebrated or deplored. HTF could we know. What was Obama’s purpose in that? Clean up the sewers and bureaucracy, get it under some kind of control, just find a warm competent body to put in the chair. Obama must know that there are more black ops there than he will ever learn about.

    If you want to reform it, then break it up, as Kennedy wanted to do so. Only Allen Dulles whom he fired and others got him killed first.

    Try reading the appendix to Ishmael Jone’s book. He has a solution to offer. And he was there in the field as a cover op for over 16 years. And kept on the good side of HQ,, and managed to do meaningful work in intelligence gathering.

  80. ID, Just a ballbust, entirely good natured and affectionate. While I know the written word is often bad for subtle communication, I thought you got me by now. I deplore emoticons, maybe I just need to label ballbusts, “ballbust”. For you dumb Swedes[ballbust!]

  81. nick,

    There were a few “intelligence officers” in my family so I really do know what I’m talking about. What Petraeus did was beyond dumb and stupid and there was no honor in it.

    Once, over 10 years ago, a family member sent me an email and had I responded to that email by hitting “reply” everything would have been okay. Instead, I copied the address and wrote a stand alone email from my account … I wanted to attach a picture and the “reply” command wouldn’t allow me to do so.

    Oh brother … that was a huge mistake! My email ran into the “firewall” and both my relative and I had to spend weeks explaining ourselves before the government was satisfied … and this was pre 9/11! Needless to say, my relative was in far more trouble than I for using the email address in the first place.

    Nope, Petraeus’ phuck phest and phurther actions would have landed any regular “intelligence officer” in prison and any “military officer” in front of a Military Court. That Petraeus was simply allowed to resign indicates a whole lot of info nobody wants to see the light of day.

    Don’t forget … the FBI has a whole slew of emails this lovesick idiot sent to his true love.

    I can guarantee you that no serious intelligence officer has one ounce of respect left for Petraeus.

  82. Why David Petraeus’s Gmail account is a national security issue
    Posted by Max Fisher
    November 10, 2012 at 11:14 am

    The beginning of the end came for CIA Director David Petraeus when Paula Broadwell, a younger married woman with whom he was having an affair, “or someone close to her had sought access to his email,” according to the Wall Street Journal’s description of an FBI probe. Associates of Petraeus had received “anonymous harassing emails” that were then traced to Broadwell, ABC’s Martha Raddatz reported, suggesting she may have found their names or addresses in his e-mail.

    The e-mail account was apparently Petraeus’s personal Gmail, not his official CIA e-mail, according to the Wall Street Journal. That’s a big deal: Some of the most powerful foreign spy agencies in the world would love to have an opening, however small, into the personal e-mail account of the man who runs the United States’ spy service. The information could have proved of enormous value to foreign hackers, who already maintain a near-constant effort to access sensitive U.S. data.

    If Petraeus allowed his Gmail security to be compromised even slightly, by widening access, sharing passwords or logging in from multiple addresses, it would have brought foreign spy agencies that much closer to a treasure trove of information. As the Wall Street Journal hints, investigators were concerned about Petraeus’s Gmail access precisely because of the history of foreign attempts to access just such accounts:

    Security officials are sensitive to misuse of personal email accounts—not only official accounts—because there have been multiple instances of foreign hackers targeting personal emails.

    A personal e-mail account like Petraeus’s almost certainly would not have contained any high-level intelligence; he probably didn’t keep a list of secret drone-base coordinates on his Google docs account. But access to the account could have provided telling information on, for example, Petraeus’s travel schedule, his foreign contacts, even personal information about himself or other senior U.S. officials.

    Private e-mail services like Google’s, though considered significantly more secure than most, still have susceptibilities to foreign intrusion. And it happens. Technology writers have sometimes discussed what one writer called the “password fallacy,” the false sense of safety created by access systems such as Google’s that balance security against ease of use. Even with Google’s extra security features, the company must also avoid making security so onerous as to drive away customers, making it an easier target for foreign hackers even before Petraeus possibly started sharing access and thus diluting the account’s integrity. And, as a Wired magazine investigation demonstrated in August, personal e-mail accounts often allow hackers access to other personal accounts, worsening both the infiltration and the damage.

    All of this might sound a little overly apprehensive – really, U.S. national security is compromised because the CIA director’s personal Gmail account might have been a little easier to hack? – until you start looking at the scale and sophistication of foreign attempts to infiltrate U.S. data sources. Chinese hacking efforts, perhaps the best-known but nowhere near the only threat to U.S. networks and computers, suggest the enormous scope and ferocious drive of foreign government hackers.

  83. Lesson: Don’t put in an email or post anywhere information that would cause unacceptable embarrassment if published on the front page of the NYTimes.

  84. All In? An apprapo title in light of this fact.

    She is like the diaper wearing astronaut. She has some serious self image problems and so does Petraeus. Nut jobs most always rise to the top in any organization.

  85. bettykath:

    no, the lesson is if you are D/CIA and cannot keep an affair secret there is no hope for the average man. Said by Jay Leno.

  86. Mr. Bron,

    From my experience, that is the expectations of anyone that is honest with themselves. The nut jobs always try and be in charge. Take for instance Cook County, IL. How many well connected nut jobs in power, regardless of the size of the organization or its purpose?

  87. F.B.I. Said to Have Stumbled Into News of Petraeus Affair
    Published: November 10, 2012

    WASHINGTON — The F.B.I. investigation that led to the resignation of David H. Petraeus as C.I.A. director on Friday began with a complaint several months ago about “harassing” e-mails sent by Paula Broadwell, Mr. Petraeus’s biographer, to an unidentified third person, a government official briefed on the case said on Saturday.

    When F.B.I. agents following up on the complaint began to examine Ms. Broadwell’s e-mails, they discovered exchanges between her and Mr. Petraeus that revealed that they were having an affair, said the official, who spoke of the investigation on the condition of anonymity.

    The person who complained about harassing messages from Ms. Broadwell, according to the official, was not a family member or a government official. One Congressional official who was briefed on the matter on Friday said senior intelligence officials had explained that the F.B.I. investigation “started with two women.”

    “It didn’t start with Petraeus, but in the course of the investigation they stumbled across him,” said the Congressional official, who said the intelligence officials had provided no other information about the two women or the focus of the inquiry. “We were stunned.”

  88. rc,

    “I’m not saying your concern is baseless, but there are other viable explanations.”

    Undoubtedly. Turf war, leak, counter espionage, theft, there are a lot of things that could have led to the FBI sniffing about the CIA but that they were doing so at all is (as you acknowledge) inherently interesting. I think even more so given our steady decline into a surveillance police state. “Who’s watching the Watchmen?” is an interesting question but usually not as interesting as “Why are they watching the Watchmen?”

  89. That they could have an affair is equally as disturbing as much else here. All CIA personnel have to pass the “box”, why would Petraeus be an exception. His physical security is so important that he should be monitored 24/7 by if not SSA then by equivalent service.

    Some psychopaths rise high, and can not do more than suspect them both of this, and they rarely fail so capitally.

    Overachievers have many pitfalls, we had one who turned over the Swedish plans for defense to the USSR. Reason: He felt that he did not get the recognition that he deserved. This woman may have felt the same, and can have recruited herself for the highest achievement of all—-traitor.

    We never placed a spy behind the iron curtain. Not one placement. Some volunteered only. USSR and Russia have
    had well-placed ones in the CIA (2) and FBI (1).

  90. Rcam’
    He’ll have to testify to protect his reputation. I don’t think he’s going to take one for the administration. There leaving this administration like rats leaving a sinking ship.

  91. Report: FBI investigation into CIA chief’s email “started with two women,” not Petraeus

    Xeni Jardin at 11:51 am Sat, No

    The Washington Post reports that the investigation into CIA chief David Petraeus began “when a woman whom he was having an affair with sent threatening e-mails to another woman close to him,” citing “three senior law enforcement officials with knowledge of the episode” as sources.

    News accounts circulating yesterday suggested instead that the FBI began snooping on the spy boss’ Gmail account for other reasons, so this is a new and significant twist: if the report is true, Petraeus paramour Paula Broadwell used the same email account to send A) Sexmail to Petraeus, and B) Threatmail to the woman she believed to be her rival for his attentions.

    By various accounts, the “other other woman” was neither a government employee nor a family member, indicating that it wasn’t, say, his wife—and that the four-star general was perhaps even busier than first thought. My goodness, but this would make a good Jerry Springer episode.

  92. “The recipient of the e-mails was so frightened that she went to the FBI for protection and help tracking down the sender, according to the officials. The FBI investigation traced the threats to Paula Broadwell, a former military officer and a Petraeus biographer, and uncovered explicit e-mails between Broadwell and Petraeus, the officials said.

    When Petraeus’s name first surfaced, FBI investigators were concerned that the CIA director’s personal e-mail account had been hacked and security had been breached. But the sexual nature of the e-mails led them to conclude that Petraeus and Broadwell were engaged in an affair, the officials said.

    The identity of the woman who received the e-mails was not disclosed, and the nature of her relationship with Petraeus is unknown. The law enforcement officials said the e-mails indicated that Broadwell perceived the other woman as a threat to her relationship with Petraeus.” WAPO

  93. Murray as with a lot of the pius holier-than-thou types uses his religion to slap at other people. To curse them. It would never dawn on his imagination to look to the Bible for solace. To see what words Sweet Baby Jesus has to salve his soul. He uses the Bible as some people might use “The Yale Book of Quotations”
    Its the night of the election and he sees the returns on his TV. Karl Rove throws his tantrum and the Fox execs don’t back down. It really is all lost!He says to himself, “Wait till those ungreatful Obama voting Ex-employees get a load of this” and starts lookin in his favorite reference book for telling others how they should live their lives.
    He had that rich man eye of the needle bit edited out of his copy.

  94. Blouise, Thanks, I don’t doubt you know what you’re talking about. You’re one of the folks here w/ many life experiences. I have a cousin who graduated from West Point and was in Army intelligence, mostly in South America since he spoke Spanish. He’s out now but working for the murky Rand Corp. Also have a friend who is a retired Navy Seal officer in San Diego. We get to spend time w/ him when were in SD for the winter. Neither of these guys talked about anything they did when in the service and still say very little. The one thing my Seal buddy has said that going into Iran would be very difficult, much more so than Iraq, where he spent a lot of time.

  95. Ishmael Jone’s suggestions for the split-up of the CIA included moving the operative side to the Military Intelligence who were much better for several reasons.

    Being correctly informed and knowing the risks while willing to take them without considering career effects was one example he cited.

    What he proposed for the analytical side, I don’t recall. It is all in the appendix to his book. “Human Factors”

  96. nick,

    What I really want to know is how he hid this affair during his vetting for the Directorship and how he managed to keep the CIA in the dark through each of his bi annual checks. That’s a whole lot of falsehood which, by the way, is as illegal as hell.

  97. “That’s a whole lot of falsehood which, by the way, is as illegal as hell.”

    Which in itself is interesting, but not nearly as interesting as it could have shaped up to be. A crazy mistress episode is all well and good for the FBI to be using resources on, but there are a lot more serious illegalities surrounding governmental official actions that merit their attention more. This is now just another dumb pol thinking with their groin story.

  98. Blouise, May I submit the names Robert Hansen and Aldridge Aimes as Exhibit 1&2 as how the FBI and CIA can be betrayed on a MUCH more serious level. This is the govt., Blouise. The govt. is incompetent, bureaucratic, petty and stupid. Certainly a smart, woman of the world, knows that. Have you ever heard, “Good enough for govt. work”?

  99. SWM, Credentials do not equal competence. In my varied career I worked for Federal and County govt. I also worked for small and mid sized companies along w/ a major corporation. Finally, I had my own small business for almost 30 years. Govt. had the least motivated and competent employees by far. My experience is not unique.

  100. “The recipient of the e-mails was so frightened that she went to the FBI for protection and help tracking down the sender, according to the officials. The FBI investigation traced the threats to Paula Broadwell, a former military officer and a Petraeus biographer, and uncovered explicit e-mails between Broadwell and Petraeus, the officials said”

    Maybe I’m crazy, but I don’t think the FBI gets involved in most instances of harassing email. Makes you wonder who was the unknown woman who is high enough up that the FBI starts digging when she gets a harassing email.

    Also, I wonder whether the FBI had a court order to read Broadwell’s emails. Kinda ironic if the D/CIA lost his career and reputation because of America’s ever growing security state and loss of civil liberties.

  101. “Maybe I’m crazy, but I don’t think the FBI gets involved in most instances of harassing email. Makes you wonder who was the unknown woman who is high enough up that the FBI starts digging when she gets a harassing email.”

    It was likely his wife, immediate family or a co-worker. Waldo.

  102. Smom,

    I’m going to have to partially agree with nick on the motivation issue, but it’s a ratio and a psychological issue. There are people in government every bit if not more motivated than any in the private sector, however, you must consider what motivates them. The motivated people you find in government tend to motivated by principle. The motivated people you find in business tend to be motivated by greed. There are a lot less principled people in the world than greedy people in the world. Consequently, you tend to see less motivated people overall in government. There is also the scalar difference in size. Most corporations (but not all) run on a much smaller workforce than a given national governmental agency which also skews the numbers. You see the same skewing in small and mid sized companies versus large Fortune 500 companies. The smaller companies have more motivated people as a ratio than the large corporations. However, motivated people do exist in both areas.

  103. “It was likely his wife, immediate family or a co-worker.”

    I think someone intimately involved in national security is a good guess. Someone like that getting harassing emails might well motivate the FBI to investigate where as your average person complaining to the FBI about receiving harassing email would likely not get the time of day from the FBI. His wife getting harassing email would certainly get the attention of the FBI, but you’d think his wife would tell him first and, if that happened, you’d think he would not get the FBI involved.

  104. Interesting new report out. Says “The identity of the woman who complained about the harassing messages from Ms. Broadwell has not been disclosed. She was not a family member or in the government, the officials said, and the nature of her relationship with Mr. Petraeus was not immediately known. But they said the two women seemed be competing for Mr. Petraeus’s loyalty, if not his affection.” Also quotes an unnamed government official as saying “Think of a small circle of people who know each other.”

    If all correct, there goes my speculation that it’s a high placed coworker. But, maybe the wife or family member of a VIP?

  105. Biographer’s threats led to Petraeus FBI investigation
    Recipient of emails sought the FBI’s help
    By Greg Miller and Sari Horwitz | WASHINGTON POST
    NOVEMBER 11, 2012

    The identity of the woman who received the e-mails was not disclosed, and the nature of her relationship with Petraeus is unknown. The officials said the woman did not work at the CIA and was not Petraeus’s wife, Holly.

    The law enforcement officials said the e-mails indicated that Broadwell perceived the other woman as a threat to her relationship with Petraeus…

    The e-mails from Broadwell indicated that she thought the other woman was becoming involved with Petraeus, according to the officials. They said the e-mails were ‘‘threatening and harassing’’ but not specific enough to warrant criminal charges.

    One of the officials said that the recipient of the e-mails complained to Petraeus about them and that the FBI later obtained e-mails between Petraeus and Broadwell in which they discussed the harassment.

  106. One does not have privacy if he or she accepts a clearance. You can be investigated. If you don’t like it, don’t apply.

  107. FBI Probe Uncovering Petraeus Affair Followed Complaints
    By Phil Mattingly and John Walcott
    November 11, 2012

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation traced the e-mails to Paula Broadwell, the author of a Petraeus biography identified as having the affair with him, these officials say. They say her messages warned the other woman to stay away from Petraeus.

    In their probe, investigators stumbled across what one of those familiar with it describe as extensive online correspondence between Broadwell and Petraeus, most and perhaps all of it using their respective G-mail accounts…

    Concerned after discovering correspondence because of an earlier Chinese hack into the Google Inc. e-mail service, which the McAfee Internet security company dubbed “Operation Aurora,” the FBI was investigating whether Petraeus’s private or CIA e-mail accounts had been compromised, the official said.

    They so far have found no evidence of a security breach, any loss of classified material or any evidence that another foreign power was aware of Petraeus’s infidelity, which the official said could have exposed him to blackmail.

  108. Yet more security concerns emerge about Paula Broadwell’s access to Petraeus
    Posted by Max Fisher on November 10, 2012


    Broadwell’s access to Petraeus appears to have been high, perhaps inappropriately so, even before the e-mail threats and FBI investigation. The Associated Press reports that some in the CIA had worried at how freely their director had invited her into his world, and at the spotlight-seeking Broadwell’s care with what she learned.

    But her access was unsettling to members of the secretive and compartmentalized intelligence agency, where husbands and wives often work in different divisions, but share nothing with each other when they come home because they don’t “need to know.”

    In one incident that caught CIA staff by surprise, Broadwell posted a photograph on her Facebook page of Petraeus with actress Angelina Jolie, taken in his 7th floor office where only the official CIA photographer is permitted to take photos. Petraeus had apparently given Broadwell the photo just hours after it was taken.

    Posting a photo of Petraeus with a movie star on a Facebook page is obviously not much of a national security breach. But what may have raised concern is the pair’s apparent disregard, at least in this incident, for following security procedures and for circumspection. If she was posting unapproved photos of the CIA director’s office on her Facebook wall, then, you have to wonder, what did she see as too sensitive for social media but fine to share with friends? Or what did Petraeus feel was appropriate to share with her privately?

    The point is not that Broadwell had access to anything more sensitive than a forbidden photo of her secret lover’s office, or that Petraeus had to share anything more. The point is that they, based on the reports out so far, disregarded normal CIA security procedures — which would also require disclosing a secret affair, given the potential for blackmail — and appeared to have invented their own. That Petraeus would invite someone into his personal and professional world — especially someone who was well known for being temperamental — without regard for normal security standards would be no small breach.

  109. Dianne Feinstein: David Petraeus News ‘Was Like A Lightning Bolt’
    By Elise Foley
    Posted: 11/11/2012 9:57 am EST

    WASHINGTON — Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said Sunday her committee will investigate the Federal Bureau of Investigation after it failed to inform them in advance of its findings on former CIA Director David Petraeus, who resigned Friday after admitting to an affair.

    “We received no advance notice. It was like a lightning bolt,” she told “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace.

    The FBI is required by law to keep Intelligence Committee members abreast of developments of this nature, but Feinstein said did not hear of its findings on Petraeus until Friday morning, when her staff faced inquiries from the press.

  110. Ex-Spy Chief David Petraeus Gave His Mistress Access To His Email
    By Kashmir Hill
    11/11/2012 @ 9:39AM

    …The FBI stumbled upon the affair during an investigation of Broadwell, after she was accused of harassing a woman in Florida who she apparently suspected was competing for the affections of the general, reports the Wall Street Journal.

    Yes, cyber harassment is what led to the unraveling of one of the country’s most powerful leaders. The FBI became concerned about a security breach because the emails that Broadwell sent to the woman included private emails that Petraeus had sent to the unnamed woman. The FBI was worried that Broadwell had hacked into Petraeus’s personal Gmail account. After they investigated, they found out that’s not what happened. What actually happened was that the defense expert and head of the country’s intelligence bureau had a privacy breach. Via the WSJ:

    “The FBI and prosecutors in Florida and North Carolina began investigating the possibility of email hacking, because at least some of the emails sent by Ms. Broadwell to the other woman included contents of messages that appeared to come from Mr. Petraeus’s own account, these people said. The Justice Department and high-level officials, including Attorney General Eric Holder, were aware of the investigation for months, having to approve certain parts of the investigation.

    “Over the course of the probe, prosecutors realized there wasn’t a cyber-breach. Instead, Mr. Petraeus had shared some access to the account with Ms. Broadwell, possibly to exchange messages, these people said.”

    Seriously. Our intelligence chief gave his mistress access to his email account. In a worst case scenario, he gave her his email password — which is a spectacularly bad idea, by the way. More likely, he may have stayed signed into Gmail on a computer she had access to. She read his email and apparently saved or forwarded messages that made her suspicious.

  111. Wait, wait, let me get this straight.

    Broadwell is having an affair with Petraeus, who is married. That’s step 1, OK?


    How does somebody who is having an extramarital affair with a married public figure manage to accumulate the chutzpah to get JEALOUS?

    So she gets jealous so she not only allows herself to go there, but she actually confronts some other woman because she thinks the other woman is stepping where she shouldn’t oughtta step? Excuse ME?

    So in the midst of this psycho-inanity, you’re telling me she uses her lover’s e-mails as “evidence” of something she feels gives her a right to feel JEALOUS of somebody?

    Will somebody please tell me how everyone in this country has become so insanely entitled? We’re not talking here about being entitled to enough of an income to put white bread and peanut butter on the table; we’re talking about a whole different kind of entitlement and where, I’m asking you, where did THAT come from?

  112. SwM,

    Can you answer what the Congressional invvestigation is about? I asked in reply to your saying it had started in spring.

    To mine him and pay in services (including daily snow jobs and ego pumping) seems to be an exclusive business right that Broadwell felt she had.

    Why should FBI/DoJ tell the truth and admit that it was the wife contesting her rights? Then it would all become so ordinary. Can’t sell commercial time on that, now can you.

    Mystery, intrigue, secret persons/witnesses, high drama.

    Was he kicked now for the simple reason that they want us to vorget the election and our vows tó change the nation?

  113. Elaine, Patreus knew he was busted 3 weeks before the election. I take back my “honorable” comment on him. He should have resigned immediately. I surmise the Chicago gang had something to say about that. It comes back to the stinky timing. No October surprise. Horseshit.

  114. Gene,

    From ABC News:

    Jill Kelley, Friend of David Petraeus, Received Harassing Emails That Launched FBI Probe
    Nov. 11, 2012

    The Florida woman who received harassing emails from Paula Broadwell, spurring an FBI probe that ultimately uncovered the Gen. David Petraeus’ extramarital affair with his biographer and led to his resignation as director of the CIA, has been identified as Jill Kelley, a local concerned citizen who volunteers to help the military.

    “We and our family have been friends with Gen. Petraeus and his family for over five years. We respect his and his family’s privacy and want the same for us and our three children,” Kelley said in a statement.

  115. Andy Borowitz ‏@BorowitzReport

    I don’t often buy into right-wing conspiracy theories, but clearly Petraeus started an affair last year to avoid testifying about Benghazi.

  116. Well, I usually support women in principle, but obviously all individuals don’t get a pass.

    The former(?) mistress is clearly in the photo inappropriately dressed, she revels in and markets blatantly her sex appeal, her husband is a foil for her fun and games, and Mrs. Petraeus is obviously resigned to the burdens of being an army wife.
    Compare her frontal stance and the former mistress profiling of boobs.

    Don’t know why either Petraeus or Broadwell bothered to act. Broadwell is not so bright if she got suckered into replying at all, much less with threatanting letters.
    Unless the former mistress threatened to expose them.

    It is a LARGE security breach but did not have to become public in a CIA handling. But there are always the yellow press to turn to.

    Did I do military officers wives, occasionally and only when visiting fleet bases, not on my home base. There, the CG’s daughter and other single ladies sufficed for my needs.

  117. “Juan Cole: Real Petraeus Failure Was Counterinsurgency in Iraq, Afghanistan”

    “CIA director David Petraeus has resigned following revelations of an extramarital affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, a married U.S. Army reservist. “This personal issue that cropped up that ruined his career at the end, I think, is very much a minor thing … compared to his big exploits in Iraq and Afghanistan,” says historian Juan Cole, who responds to the surprise departure of the former head of U.S. forces in Afghanistan. Petraeus retired from 37 years in the military to head the CIA last year. Over the weekend, new revelations suggested Broadwell had sent harassing emails to Jill Kelley, a 37-year-old from Florida and a family friend of Petraeus and his wife, Holly. The FBI launched an inquiry after Kelley said she had received vicious emails from the CIA director’s biographer. Its investigation revealed the affair and led agents to believe Broadwell or someone close to her had sought access to his email. On Sunday, Democracy Now! spoke to Cole about the significance of Petraeus’s resignation and about Malala Yousafzai, the 14-year-old Pakistani activist who was shot in the head by a Taliban militant for demanding the right of girls’ education. Cole is professor of history at the University of Michigan, and his most recent book is “Engaging the Muslim World.” [includes rush transcript]”

    JUAN COLE: … And the Project for the New American Century simply wouldn’t come to terms with that reality. And so, in many ways, General Petraeus’s career got ruined twice.

    AMY GOODMAN: And what do you mean, Project for a New American Century, PNAC? Explain what that is.

    JUAN COLE: Well, the Project for the New American Century was thought up by the neoconservative movement in the late 1990s. They felt that the Soviet Union had fallen, the U.S. was now the sole superpower, what the French call a “hyperpower,” and that it could act with impunity. So if it wanted to invade and occupy Iraq and reformulate Iraq and put a government in and exploit Iraq’s natural resources, like the petroleum, that it could do so without opposition.

    And while it is true that, you know, Russia and China didn’t interfere with the United States going into Iraq in that way, the Iraqi people did. The Iraqi people were educated, mobilized. You know, Iraq had had a big pharmaceutical and other industries, petrochemicals. They were wired. They were—they were educated, then networked. And they inflicted damage on the U.S. military all along the way, and it came both from Sunnis and from Shiites. Many Iraqis simply never accepted the idea of a foreign occupation of their country, and it failed.

    The Project for a New American Century formulated as a proposition that the U.S. could be an empire on the old British model, that you could bring back the age of empire in that way. That crashed and burned, and it crashed and burned because people in the Global South are now mobilized, both politically and socially. And it was the lack of mobilization in the old 19th century empires, when people were in three—300 people in a village, and they weren’t literate, and they weren’t connected with each other—OK, then maybe the British Empire could exist. But that’s not the situation anymore. And what I’m saying is that Petraeus was sent to these countries by the Project from a New American Century. It was the big neoconservative thinkers who thought up these kinds of wars and these kinds of projects for occupation and reformulation of entire countries. And they are anachronistic. You can’t do this anymore. The age of the British Empire had passed.

    AMY GOODMAN: And you’re saying that the Project for a New American Century persisted under President Obama; he didn’t change it.

    JUAN COLE: Well, I’m saying that, in some ways, the Afghanistan troop escalation or surge was one last iteration of some of that project to try to formulate Afghanistan in a way favorable to the United States before we then left.

    And again, I should be clear, I don’t think that that’s what President Obama wanted. He went to the Pentagon and asked, “Give me three plans,” you know, an ambitious one, a less ambitious one and a minimal one. And they stonewalled him for nine months. And he was in a position where people in Washington were saying, “Well, what are you going to do? You’re president now. You need a plan.” And he went back to the Pentagon and said, “Well, where’s the plan?” And they said, “Well, we’ve got one for you, but the others are going to take a while.” So they kind of boxed him in to this troop surge.

    AMY GOODMAN: And Petraeus’s role in that?

    JUAN COLE: Petraeus was the one who boxed him in. So, Petraeus got what he wanted. But in my view, he got a failed policy.

  118. Thanks for the FP link, Elaine M. (I saw the story earlier, but was wary of the source.)

    ” Broadwell, who attended the university’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies, spoke at length of her career ambitions.

    “My longterm goal had always been to become national security advisor,” she said.

    That’s probably not going to happen now.” (Foreign Policy link, above)

  119. November 11, 2012
    A Petraeus Puzzle: Were Politics Involved?
    Posted by Jane Mayer

    According to the Times, approximately two weeks ago, F.B.I. investigators confronted Petraeus personally about the matter. After talking to him, they were satisfied that there were no breaches of national security or other crimes involved. It was then, the Times reports, that Petraeus certainly became aware of the investigation, if he had not known of it before. Interestingly, he did not offer his resignation at once, raising the question of whether he would have resigned at all if he hadn’t been asked to when the issue was about to become public. With the election two weeks away, and the C.I.A.’s potential intelligence failures in the fatal ambush of American’s diplomats in Libya a campaign issue, Petraeus surely recognized that if he resigned, the scandal would shake the Obama Administration, perhaps giving more fodder to its Republican critics in what appeared to be an extremely close election.

    The Times uses the word “murky” to describe what happened next, and there are many puzzling aspects. But according to the Times, at the end of October, a week or so after the F.B.I. investigators confronted Petraeus, an unidentified F.B.I. employee took the matter into his own hands. Evidently without authorization, he went to the Republicans in Congress. First he informed a Republican congressman, Dave Reichert of Washington state. According to the Times, Reichert advised this F.B.I. employee to go to the Republican leadership in the House. The F.B.I. employee then told what he knew about the investigation to Eric Cantor, the House Majority Leader. Cantor released a statement to the Times confirming that he had spoken to the F.B.I. informant, whom his staff described as a “whistleblower.” Cantor said, “I was contacted by an F.B.I. employee who was concerned that sensitive, classified information might have been compromised.” But what, exactly, was this F.B.I. employee trying to expose? Was he blowing the whistle on his bosses? If so, why? Was he dissatisfied with their apparent exoneration of Petraeus? Given that this drama was playing out in the final days of a very heated Presidential campaign, and he was taking a potentially scandalous story to the Republican leadership in Congress, was there a political motive?

    According to the Times, Cantor said he took the information, and “made certain that director Mueller”—that is Robert Mueller III, the director of the F.B.I.—“was aware of these serious allegations, and the potential risk to our national security.” This is a strange way to explain his contact with the F.B.I. on this matter, because it is almost inconceivable that director Mueller was not already aware that the bureau he runs had examined the e-mail account of the director of the C.I.A., and, further, confronted him in person. Such a meeting between the bureau and head of the C.I.A. would have been extraordinary, and it is fairly unthinkable that Mueller wouldn’t have been consulted. So what information was Cantor conveying when he got in touch with Mueller?

    One obvious point of the call would have been to inform the F.B.I. director that Republicans on the Hill knew about Petraeus’s vulnerability, and also about the investigation. If the F.B.I. had ever entertained hopes of keeping it secret, the odds of doing so were fast diminishing. The same message would have become clear to Petraeus, who was due to testify in front of a House panel next week.

    If Cantor spoke with Mueller on Halloween, as the Times chronology suggests, what happened between then and November 6th, which is when the F.B.I. reportedly informed James Clapper Jr., the Director of National Intelligence, about Petraeus’s extra-marital affair? The internal pressure must have been enormous on Petraeus during this period. Perhaps he tried to outlast the election in order to shelter Obama from the fallout of his own personal foibles. Perhaps the F.B.I. director, Mueller, who has a reputation for integrity, tried to keep the scandal from political exploitation by keeping it under wraps until Election Day. Cantor, too, appears to have kept quiet, despite the political advantage his party might have gained from going public. Why? It is possible that, because the investigation had national-security implications, those in the know needed to tread carefully for legal reasons.


    Why did Paula Broadwell think the CIA had taken prisoners in Benghazi?

    Posted by Max Fisher on November 12, 2012 at 11:28 am

    “I could be missing other possible scenarios, but all of these further raise the concern that, even if Petraeus did not allow classified intelligence to be compromised, his relationship with Broadwell may have heightened that very serious risk.

    The full story of Broadwell’s access to Petraeus’s world at the CIA is still not clear, but it appears to have been intimate, perhaps problematically so. The Wall Street Journal now reports that FBI investigators found classified documents on her computer. That Petraeus’s relationship may have jeopardized sensitive intelligence would seem to remain the strongest case for his resignation.”

  121. “What did Obama know and when did he know it.” The WH claims Obama knew NOTHING until 2 days after the election. If possible, take your partisan hats off for a moment and ask yourself if that passes the smell test.

  122. Thanks to our informers, and thanks for the caveats mentioned, I guess to suggest caution for concealed bias.

    Do we need a name for all this? All these seemingly independent organizations which have definitely concealed inter-relations and agendas????

    Take Foreign Policy, which I believe is the press/PR
    organ for a conservative organization claiming to have the good of the nation as its goal.

    That is just one of many organizations, from the flimsiet of fronts with emotionally appealing names, to hidden ones without known names.
    An example would be the 143(?) member private empire discussed in the recent days.

    My purpose, to fight the enemy, you must know him in all measures possible. How can we do this?

    Surely as battle is certain there must be foundations, university institutes, etc who have analyzed the combatants on both sides, written studies, books, etc.
    These works hopefully are available to us.
    Are they?

    And what nmee shall we use for the paraply which those of us believe is the central control function to convert the age of nation states to the age of commercial empires which has nullified the nation states’ sovereignity.

    A name might help us keep concentrated on the concept that it IS controlled to a large degree, and it is money which rules, not the people. And that this is a real conspiracy.

    Some of their meetings are declared but still secret in content, where some meetings function as contact points giving possibility of cooperation between parts that don’t usually do so.

    Seeing the trees instead of the forest hampers us.

  123. Nick S,

    It suits me fine and even others here, no names.

    Because——-no President has had control of the CIA since before JFK and even there I would not venture to
    name the President who could have controlled them.

    The same is basically true for the FBI since Hoover’s time and even since his death.

    One good reason is that in both these cases, their own chiefs have not had control, not even Hoover or H W Bush.

    An OT is that this is true for most bureaucratic federal institutions of any size. They each see to their own interests and livelihood.

  124. Looks like I must thank FP Passport for the Broadwell transcript—the video later.

    On one item I wish she had directly addressed in a judgemental mode, and not as a information source.

    The presence of a CIA annex, even if missioned for militia capture missions, should be better lead, and is certainly capable of materially adding to the defencse of the consulate compound.

    Calling for a Delta Force for help screams for serious critque—at exactly which weak point I am not certain:
    leadership, scenario planning, resourcing, simple lack of guts, failure-avoidance culture, etc.

    My dislike for the ineffectualness of the CIA deepens.

  125. Nick, I won’t say Obama not knowing anything until two days ago is what I would have expected. But, what’s the motivation to lie about it? In other words, so what if he did know about this investigation a while back? It’s not like Petraeus is intimately connected to Obama and him resigning because of it somehow hurts either Obama or Democrats politically. I’ve always seen Petraeus as being hero worshiped by the right and talked about as a possible Republican presidential candidate, although if this had come out months ago I fail to see how it would have hurt Republican either.

  126. The big question I still have with Petraeus is why he resigned. If you take the news stories at face value, then Obama did not force him out. He wasn’t going to be prosecuted for any crime. Yes, he broke CIA rules, but it seems like he enjoyed such widespread, bipartisan support that no one would have blamed Obama for keeping him on. So, that leaves me with (1) he viewed this as the honorable thing to do, which seems to be the public explanation, or (2) there’s more to it than meets the eye. I’m a little skeptical of one since he supposedly learned the FBI knew about the affair a few weeks ago and he did nothing. I wonder whether there’s evidence that he did more than simply have an affair, such as sharing confidential information or if someone wanted him out and is holding as yet undisclosed, embarrassing information.

  127. nick,

    I can understand Obama not being told … you don’t tell the President something like this unless you a have course of action to recommend … not if you want to keep your job as DI.

    What I find much more interesting is who was the FBI agent who blabbed the whole thing to Eric Cantor and maybe also Dave Reichert over a week before anyone in the Executive was notified?

    What effect did that security breach have on the decision to tell the President? Was there a Petraeus coverup going on that got blown out of the water?

  128. From the WSJ article anonymously posted linked:

    “WASHINGTON—A federal agent who launched the investigation that ultimately led to the resignation of Central Intelligence Agency chief David Petraeus was barred from taking part in the case over the summer due to superiors’ concerns that he had become personally involved in the case, according to officials familiar with the probe.

    New details about how the Federal Bureau of Investigation handled the case suggest that even as the bureau delved into Mr. Petraeus’s personal life, the agency had to address questionable conduct by one of its own—including allegedly sending shirtless photos of himself to a woman involved in the case. ”

    Wow. This is starting to sound a lot like the Keystone cops with sex.

    Interesting find there, ap. Thanks.

  129. OMG, how is it that nobody is ever embarrassed about anything any more?

    Guys, you have JOBS now, you have to grow UP now and act like grown-ups! You know, those guys who get to carry guns on TV? Like THEM! Hello Hello!

  130. “FBI’s abuse of the surveillance state is the real scandal needing investigation”

    “That the stars of America’s national security establishment are being devoured by out-of-control surveillance is a form of sweet justice”

    “So not only did the FBI – again, all without any real evidence of a crime – trace the locations and identity of Broadwell and Petreaus, and read through Broadwell’s emails (and possibly Petraeus’), but they also got their hands on and read through 20,000-30,000 pages of emails between Gen. Allen and Kelley.

    This is a surveillance state run amok. It also highlights how any remnants of internet anonymity have been all but obliterated by the union between the state and technology companies.

    But, as unwarranted and invasive as this all is, there is some sweet justice in having the stars of America’s national security state destroyed by the very surveillance system which they implemented and over which they preside. As Trevor Timm of the Electronic Frontier Foundation put it this morning: “Who knew the key to stopping the Surveillance State was to just wait until it got so big that it ate itself?”

    It is usually the case that abuses of state power become a source for concern and opposition only when they begin to subsume the elites who are responsible for those abuses. Recall how former Democratic Rep. Jane Harman – one of the most outspoken defenders of the illegal Bush National Security Agency (NSA) warrantless eavesdropping program – suddenly began sounding like an irate, life-long ACLU privacy activist when it was revealed that the NSA had eavesdropped on her private communications with a suspected Israeli agent over alleged attempts to intervene on behalf of AIPAC officials accused of espionage. Overnight, one of the Surveillance State’s chief assets, the former ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, transformed into a vocal privacy proponent because now it was her activities, rather than those of powerless citizens, which were invaded.

    With the private, intimate activities of America’s most revered military and intelligence officials being smeared all over newspapers and televisions for no good reason, perhaps similar conversions are possible. Put another way, having the career of the beloved CIA Director and the commanding general in Afghanistan instantly destroyed due to highly invasive and unwarranted electronic surveillance is almost enough to make one believe not only that there is a god, but that he is an ardent civil libertarian.

    The US operates a sprawling, unaccountable Surveillance State that – in violent breach of the core guarantees of the Fourth Amendment – monitors and records virtually everything even the most law-abiding citizens do. Just to get a flavor for how pervasive it is, recall that the Washington Post, in its 2010 three-part “Top Secret America” series, reported: “Every day, collection systems at the National Security Agency intercept and store 1.7 billion e-mails, phone calls and other types of communications.”

    Equally vivid is this 2007 chart from Privacy International, a group that monitors the surveillance policies of nations around the world. Each color represents the level of the nation’s privacy and surveillance policies, with black being the most invasive and abusive (“Endemic Surveillance Societies”) and blue being the least (“Consistently upholds human rights standards”):

    And the Obama administration has spent the last four years aggressively seeking to expand that Surveillance State, including by agitating for Congressional action to amend the Patriot Act to include Internet and browsing data among the records obtainable by the FBI without court approval and demanding legislation requiring that all Internet communications contain a government “backdoor” of surveillance.

    Based on what is known, what is most disturbing about the whole Petraeus scandal is not the sexual activities that it revealed, but the wildly out-of-control government surveillance powers which enabled these revelations. What requires investigation here is not Petraeus and Allen and their various sexual partners but the FBI and the whole sprawling, unaccountable surveillance system that has been built.”

  131. Gene,

    From ap’s post above “Who knew the key to stopping the Surveillance State was to just wait until it got so big that it ate itself?”

    Now I don’t know if that’s going to stop it but I do believe it is starting to eat itself as Allen is now caught up in the mess.

    The notes run along the same lines

  132. Quote of the day?

    “Put another way, having the career of the beloved CIA Director and the commanding general in Afghanistan instantly destroyed due to highly invasive and unwarranted electronic surveillance is almost enough to make one believe not only that there is a god, but that he is an ardent civil libertarian.” -Glenn Greenwald (from his article today, link above)

  133. “CIA Director David Petraeus and Paula Broadwell, a former military intelligence officer and his biographer, adopted a well-worn online trick, in an apparent attempt to keep their communications secret.

    They wrote their “intimate messages” as draft e-mails in a shared Gmail account, according to the AP, allowing them to see one anothers’ messages while leaving a much fainter data trail. When messages are sent and received, both accounts record the transmission as well as such metadata as the IP addresses on either end, something the two seemed to be seeking to avoid.

    Petraeus and Broadwell apparently used a trick, known to terrorists and teen-agers alike, to conceal their email traffic, one of the law enforcement officials said.

    Rather than transmitting emails to the other’s inbox, they composed at least some messages and instead of transmitting them, left them in a draft folder or in an electronic “dropbox,” the official said. Then the other person could log onto the same account and read the draft emails there. This avoids creating an email trail that is easier to trace.

    The trick has achieved notoriety as a tactic of terrorists who are rightly wary of espionage.

    It’s the sort of measure you take if you fear there’s a risk that someone will look in on you. And it’s been around for quite some time, which may be why the FBI investigators were not fooled by it.” Washington Post

  134. From Glenn Greenwald’s article today:

    “(1) One of the claims made over the last week was that Broadwell, in public comments about the Benghazi attack, referenced non-public information – including that the CIA was holding prisoners in Benghazi and that this motivated the attack – suggesting that someone gave her classified information. About those claims, a national security reporter for Fox reported:

    “that a well-placed Washington source confirms that Libyan militiamen were being held at the CIA annex and may have been a possible reason for the attack. Multiple intelligence sources, she also reported, said ‘there were more than just Libyan militia members who were held and interrogated by CIA contractors at the CIA annex in the days prior to the attack. Other prisoners from additional countries in Africa and the Middle East were brought to this location.'”

    Though the CIA denies that “the agency is still in the detention business”, it certainly should be investigated to determine whether the CIA is maintaining off-the-books detention facilities in Libya.”

  135. )O
    2) ff the books detention centers—of course they are.
    This why, and why the CIA can’t do crap right.

    1) CIA has no undercover officers to recruit agents in the Middle East.
    2) CIA has only embassy-placed officers there.
    3) CIA embassy officers are prime targets for disinformation for many reasons, economic, political, etc.
    4) CIA needs places to detain and interrogate suspecs fingered by local disinfomation spreaders.

    QED A tent in the desert will not do!

  136. Get ready for a movie of the week!

    Jill Kelley, Woman Who Sparked Petraeus Scandal, Ran Questionable Charity
    Posted: 11/13/2012

    WASHINGTON — Tampa, Fla., socialite and military hostess Jill Kelley, one of the women at the center of the ever-expanding scandal that brought down former CIA Director David Petraeus, founded a questionable charity for cancer patients with her surgeon husband, Scott Kelley.

    Based out of the couple’s mansion, the Doctor Kelley Cancer Foundation claimed on its tax forms that it “shall be operated exclusively to conduct cancer research and to grant wishes to terminally ill adult cancer patients.”

    From the records, it appears that the charity fell far short of its mission. While the origins of the seed money used to start the charity in 2007 are unclear, financial records reviewed by The Huffington Post reveal that the group spent all of its money not on research, but on parties, entertainment, travel and attorney fees.

    By the end of 2007, the charity had gone bankrupt, having conveniently spent exactly the same amount of money, $157,284, as it started with — not a dollar more, according to its 990 financial form. Of that, $43,317 was billed as “Meals and Entertainment,” $38,610 was assigned to “Travel,” another $25,013 was spent on legal fees, and $8,822 went to “Automotive Expenses.”

    The Kelleys also listed smaller expenses that appear excessive for a charity operating from a private home, including $12,807 for office expenses and supplies, and $7,854 on utilities and telephones.

    Jill Kelley’s sister, Natalie Khawam, was listed as the only other officer of the charity. This past April, Khawam filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, listing more than $3.6 million in liabilities, including $53,000 owed to the Internal Revenue Service and $800,000 owed to her sister and brother-in-law.

    Efforts to reach the Kelleys and Khawam were unsuccessful.


    New twists in Petraeus case: Another general accused of ‘inappropriate’ emails, ‘shirtless’ FBI agent taken off probe
    By Liz Goodwin, Yahoo! News

  137. C’mon folks. You didn’t think these people are clean?
    Sorry ElaineM, I mean all those making over 50,000 a year. Oh, you’re making that. Let’s raise that to Obama’s favorite number: 250,000. Will that do you?

    And the most interesting thing is how easy it is to turn up dirt on this “class” of people. You don’t
    think that just these people are the only dirty ones?
    Only Republicans are that stupid.

    With 10K to 30 K emails between Gen Allen, our boy in Aghanistan, and this Ms Kelley, they must have a lot to talk about. What can be that interesting. Is it money or sex. My guess and that of journalists is sex. Cluster-forking as one called it.

  138. Wait until the CIA starts in on the FBI. CIA has more folks all over the country, more than overseas.

    And then the DoD will hop into the cage and then Panetta will defect to Austrlia. He always did want to do it with a “roo”.

    And then Congress reveals that the JCS have a service team with volunteers from girl’s colleges around the Pentagon.

    Only a few hours rto a new day.


    “The curious case of the Kelley family is explored by the Tampa Bay Times, where Jill Kelley’s social activities meant “the Kelley mansion became the place to be seen” for military personnel stationed nearby in Tampa.

    But the Tampa Bay Times article also shows an unhappier side to life:

    Just three months after they posed with David and Holly Petraeus, strands of Gasparilla beads hanging from their necks, the Kelleys were hit with a foreclosure lawsuit.

    The suit, brought by Central Bank against the Kelleys and Kelly Land Holdings, centered on a three-story office building at 300 E Madison St in downtown Tampa. Court records show they owed the bank nearly $2.2m, including attorney fees.

    In 2011, a judge ordered the property to be put up for sale.

    And there’s more:

    Since the Kelleys have been in Tampa, records show, one or both have been subjects of lawsuits nine times — including an $11,000 judgment against them that originated in Pennsylvania.

    Ongoing cases, the court records show, include an indebtedness case from Chase Bank; a foreclosure case from Regions Bank; and a credit card case from FIA Card Services.

    Not long after the couple arrived in Tampa, Jill Kelley and her identical twin sister, Natalie Khawam, appeared for a taping of the Food Network’s reality show, Food Fight.

    The segment featured sibling rivalry, with the twins cooking off against two brothers.

    12.33pm ET

    Those US generals and CIA directors appear to have more time on their hands than you’d imagine. According to the New York Post, both David Petraeus and John Allen intervened in a child custody law suit involving Natalie Khawam, the twin sister of Jill Kelley.

    The Post has copies of both letters the two men wrote to the court as character testimonials for Kelley’s sister – which reveal that Petraeus hosted both sisters and their families for Christmas dinner in 2011.

    Soap opera and telenovela writers everywhere are throwing their hands up in dismay, complaining that there’s no way they can top this stuff.”

  140. “”I am an honorary consul general,” Jill Kelley said in one call Sunday to a police non-emergency number.” (from the following link/article)

    TAMPA —

    “Upset at reporters and others outside her home, Jill Kelley has called police four times over the past two days, in one case requesting “diplomatic protection.”

    In another instance, a man called 911 from the same address to complain.

    “I am an honorary consul general,” Jill Kelley said in one call Sunday to a police non-emergency number. “I have inviolability. They should not be on my property. I don’t know if you want to get diplomatic, uh, protection involved as well. It’s against the law to cross my property. It’s inviolable.”

    By the time of her fifth call, on Monday, the police knew the address and asked whether Kelley was complaining about media presence.

    Jill Kelley’s personalized Florida license plate reads, “Honorary Consul, JK1.””

  141. “WASHINGTON—The adultery scandal that led to the downfall of David Petraeus as CIA director widened Tuesday as President Barack Obama put on hold his nomination of Marine Gen. John Allen as commander of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, one of the world’s top military posts.

    The Pentagon said a Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into Mr. Petraeus’s communications had revealed that Gen. Allen, now the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, exchanged numerous emails with Jill Kelley, the Florida woman who triggered the investigation. Ms. Kelley had complained to the FBI about receiving harassing emails that the agency later traced to a woman involved with Mr. Petraeus.

    On Tuesday, people familiar with the case said that at one point in the summer, after the investigation began pointing to larger potential national security issues, Ms. Kelley tried to get the FBI to drop the matter. The people said she made the request because she was worried about the personal information being provided to investigators.” WSJ


    “A former military officer told us that Kelley often sought to bypass protocol officers and make direct connections with the top generals such as David Petraeus, and General John Allen. She also courted their wives. Sources describe her as a prolific emailer and caller. One admiral instructed an aide: “You’ll have to manage her for me.”

    Living in a million-dollar home, the Kelley’s seemed to perfectly blend social status, patriotism, and philanthropy. But records on file with the state of Florida show nine different court actions involving debts, mortgages, and a foreclosure.

    Kelley’s powerful military connections surfaced in another court matter when she sought help for her twin sister, Natalie Khawam, in a bitter child custody fight.

    General John Allen and former CIA Director and retired General David Petraeus signed letters to the court that bear four-star-general emblems and are dated five-and-a-half weeks ago.

    “Natalie clearly dotes on her son,” wrote Petraeus. “It is unfortunate, in my view, that her interaction with her son has been so limited by the custody settlement.”

    General Allen says the toddler shouldn’t be penalized by “limiting his expectations to experience the love, mentorship, and guidance of his mother.”

    The judge in the case had a different view. He expressed “profound concerns about Ms. Khawam’s “extreme distortions” and “severe psychological deficits.” He called Khawam a “psychologically unstable person” with an “unsteady moral and ethical compass.”

    CBS News spoke to Natalie Khawam’s lawyer, who didn’t address the judge’s comments directly, but allowed that any custody hearing involving children is an excruciatingly sensitive, painful, and personal proceeding. He also said he’s not representing her any more.”

  143. “In the email received by Gen. Allen, Ms. Broadwell—writing under the pseudonym KelleyPatrol—described Ms. Kelley as a “seductress” and warned the general about being entangled in a relationship with her, the official said. A lawyer for Ms. Broadwell didn’t return messages seeking comment Tuesday.

    Gen. Allen was concerned by that email and forwarded it to Ms. Kelley, the official with knowledge of Gen. Allen’s thinking said.

    FBI agents conducted a consensual search at Ms. Broadwell’s home in Charlotte, N.C., Monday, though it was unclear why. Multiple government officials have said that while the FBI doesn’t believe Mr. Petraeus committed any crimes, they are still examining Ms. Broadwell’s conduct.

    Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said that the Pentagon received the information concerning Gen. Allen from the FBI on Sunday.

    Some officials believe that if Gen. Allen’s account is proved true—that there was no physical relationship and that flirtation was mostly on the part of Ms. Kelley—his nomination to become NATO commander won’t be derailed. Gen. Allen will remain commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan while the facts are ascertained, Mr. Panetta said.” WSJ

  144. WTF? I give. (Yes, appropriate music, Gene H.)

    ” Jill Kelley, the Tampa socialite connected to ISAF Commander John Allen and former CIA Director David Petraeus, is an “honorary consul” of South Korea, a diplomatic official with direct knowledge of the arrangement told The Cable.

    “She is an ‘honorary consul’ of the Republic of Korea,” the official said. “She assumed this position last August thanks to her good connections and network.”

    The position of honorary consul is symbolic and has no official responsibilities, the official said.

    “She does not work as a real consul. They play a role to improve the relationship between the ROK and the U.S.,” the official said. “Jill Kelley helped to get support for [the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement] and she arranged meetings between the ROK Ambassador to Washington and local businessmen when the ROK Ambassador visited the Tampa area.”

    There’s no implication that the South Korean government has anything to do with the growing scandal that involves Kelly, Allen, Petraeus, and Paula Broadwell, Petraeus’s biographer and alleged mistress. But her work on behalf of the South Koreans may explain some of the 20,000 to 30,000 pages of e-mails between her and Allen that the Defense Department’s Inspector General’s office is investigating now. “

  145. “Elaine M.
    1, November 13, 2012 at 9:13 pm

    I don’t have a clue as to why you keep trying to poke me with a stick.”


    Can you:

    1) explain what poking with a stick is? I am not familiar with that American term?
    2) give a recent example of my doing so?

    Not understanding, I can not offer to stop, nor apologize for what I don’t understand is the fault involved.

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