Timeline of events surrounding CIA Director Petraeus' resignation

WASHINGTON Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:00pm EST

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The following is a timeline of events related to the resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus, according to U.S. officials, public statements and other sources:

Spring 2006: Paula Broadwell meets David Petraeus at a Harvard University function.

2008: Broadwell decides to pursue a doctorate in public policy and conduct a case study on Petraeus' leadership. Petraeus invites her to go on a run in Washington, D.C.

2010: Petraeus is put in charge of the war in Afghanistan and Broadwell would visit and observe him in Afghanistan.

August 2011: Petraeus retires after nearly four decades in the U.S. Army.

September 6, 2011: Petraeus sworn in as CIA director.

January 2012: Biography of Petraeus co-authored by Broadwell, "All In: The Education of General David Petraeus," is published.

2011-2012: Broadwell and Petraeus extramarital affair started after he left military service and ended about four months ago.

Sometime within the past four or five months - one official said "early summer" - a woman complained to the FBI about harassing emails that were later determined to have been written by Broadwell. In the course of investigating that complaint, the FBI discovered an affair between Broadwell and Petraeus.

Week of October 21: Federal investigators interview Broadwell.

Week of October 28: Federal investigators interview Petraeus. Prosecutors conclude afterward they likely will not bring criminal charges.

Tuesday, November 6, Election Day, at about 5 p.m.: the FBI notifies Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who oversees the CIA and other intelligence agencies, about Petraeus. Clapper speaks to Petraeus that evening and again Wednesday and advises him to step down.

Wednesday, November 7: Clapper informs White House National Security Council official that Petraeus may resign and President Barack Obama should be informed. The president is told about it later that day.

Thursday, November 8: At 11 a.m. a Petraeus meeting with foreign dignitaries scheduled for 2:30 p.m. is canceled and his visitors are informed he has to go to the White House to meet with Obama. Petraeus meets with Obama at the White House and offers his resignation, explaining the circumstances behind it. Obama did not immediately accept the resignation.

Friday, November 9 - Obama calls Petraeus and accepts his resignation.

- Clapper issues public statement: "Dave's decision to step down represents the loss of one of our nation's most respected public servants." No mention of the reason for his resignation.

- Petraeus message to CIA workforce is made public: "After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair."

- Obama statement: "By any measure, through his lifetime of service David Petraeus has made our country safer and stronger."

Sunday, November 11 - News media report that the woman who made original complaint to FBI was Jill Kelley, described by sources as a long-time family friend who had no romantic involvement with Petraeus.

(Reporting by Tabassum Zakaria, Rick Rothacker, David Ingram, Matt Spetalnick and Mark Hosenball. Editing by Warren Strobel and Eric Walsh)

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Comments (3)
treybrant wrote:
Anybody in Petraeus’s situation would claim what he says: “After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair.” He is definitely inclined to claim that there was only one affair because he could risk dishonorable discharge and losing his retirement pay if it had happened any earlier than they claim that it did.

The fact of the matter is that it should be investigated whether he committed adultery before the end of his military career because that is a serious criminal offense in the military, which may even result in up to one year in prison.

Nov 12, 2012 8:56am EST  --  Report as abuse
NancyT wrote:
I had heard that Broadwell was snooping in Petraeus’ email but don’t see anything about that on the timeline and haven’t heard anything about it lately. So, I have to assume this information was false. The snooping in Petraeus’ email sounded like the spy on Covert Affairs – sleeping with someone and peeking in their email for secrets. Exciting and delicious, but not true I take it. Just a petty jealous email sent from one woman to another and an extramarital affair. Yawn…

Nov 12, 2012 12:45pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Janeallen wrote:
For this case, I would place the privacy concerns for Mrs. Holly Petraeus over my curiosity.

However, I hope that the higher academic institutions of our country takes seriously the common phenomenon of the problem of unfettered discretion of PhD advisors on the Thesis panel. In this case, the material available makes it sound like the woman took, or at least shared the initiative, but we’ll never find out the truth.

In real life, women graduate students are at the complete mercy of the integrity of their academic advisors, once the advisors are assigned. And the exemplary and impeccable reputation of Petraeus highlights the reality that the most reputable senior men advisors are often in a predatory position, because at the graduate level, grades hardly matter, only the evaluation of advisors. And evaluation can be completely subjective, and often biased but it’s nearly impossible to prove. It highlights one of the reason there is significant pressure on graduate women in academics as well as in the military. Of course, some men advisors are absolutely honorable, but there is no way young women graduate students can tell. To be fair, senior women advisors can be predatory too, but the lower percentage of women faculty, particularly in some male dominant fields.

I believe Harvard has some answering to do, and should take the lead in setting some higher internal standard of ethical behavior for Harvard students studying for their PhD degrees. Then, the rest of the higher academic institutions in the country will feel the pressure to follow and doing something about this common problem in American higher education that is taboo to talk about.

Nov 12, 2012 4:29pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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