Petraeus Plot Twists: Shirtless FBI Agent and Another Flirting General
The media coverage of David Petraeus and Paula Broadwell is finally taking a detour from its heavy focus on sex.
Now journalists are asking the overdue question: What the hell were FBI agents doing snooping around the CIA director’s e-mail over an affair that broke no laws and is not exactly unusual behavior in Washington?
Not only that, there’s another general whose emails to a woman not his wife have come under investigation–and promptly leaked to the press.
Turns out the FBI agent who launched the probe is himself under investigation, says the Wall Street Journal. The paper says the agent sent a shirtless photo of himself to Jill Kelley, the Tampa activist who received what she considered harassing e-mails from Broadwell.
This is turning into a really bad Hollywood potboiler.
The unnamed agent was a friend of Kelley. His bosses grew so concerned that he had become obsessed with the matter that he was taken off the case.
Naturally, there has been plenty of media speculation about exactly what Broadwell told Kelley that prompted her to call the cops. The emails were sent anonymously. According to the Journal:
One asked if Ms. Kelley’s husband was aware of her actions, according to officials. In another, the anonymous writer claimed to have watched Ms. Kelley touching “him” provocatively underneath a table, the officials said.
Not pleasant, but not exactly threatening.
So for all the coming melodrama about who knew what when and when the ill-fated affair started, journalists should not lose sight of the FBI may have committed a gross breach of privacy–and because one guy may have been hot for Jill Kelley.
But wait! The Washington Post reports this morning that the FBI probe has expanded to include Gen. John Allen, the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, over 20,000 to 30,000 “potentially inappropriate” e-mails between Allen and Jill Kelley. How did he have time to run the war?
And “potentially inappropriate”? Don’t they know it when they see it?
This story, for the media, is clearly the gift that keeps on giving.
Footnote: Broadwell’s ghostwriter, the Washington Post’s Vernon Loeb, says he never suspected the affair, declaring: “My wife says I’m the most clueless person in America.”
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