F.B.I. and Justice Dept. Said to Seek Charges for Petraeus

The F.B.I. and Justice Department prosecutors suggested bringing felony charges against the retired general for providing classified information to his former mistress while he was director of the C.I.A., officials said.

Comments: 255

  1. Even the Times is propagating the nonsense that the surge resulted in victory in Iraq? Huh? The surge, which largely was comprised of paying Iraqis millions of dollars not to shoot at us, transformed an utter catastrophe back into a mere criminal disaster. The country's infantile need for a hero story was what was needed, much more than anything in reality, and Petraeus fit the bill. His work in Afghanistan was less than great, and he failed completely as CIA chief. I hope the Times finds a way to return to reporting facts soon.

  2. ?

    The surge worked well enough.

  3. This isn't about Iraq, it is about an Army general.

    Clinton was impeached and lost his law license. John Edwards had to go to trial. Why not the same here?

    Sounds like a plan to me.

  4. Yeah!

  5. If Petraeus is guilty, then he should be dealt with accordingly. Not that those who intentionally outed C.I.A. agent Valerie Plame were ever all brought to justice. Let's see what happens. It might demonstrate a stark difference between the Bush and Obama administrations. Or it might not.

    And how many corporate officials or private citizens who have supplied information, material goods, or weapons to our listed enemies have been appropriately dealt with?

    The problem with creating heroes is that when they turn out to be human, the rest of us tend to get overly disillusioned. But, then again, both politicians and the media have a tendency to exaggerate the virtues and faults of everything from people to gadgets to their pet project to their crusade-of-the-month.

  6. Re-read the correct history of the Plame affair. She was not a covert operative therefore she wasn't outed.

  7. Attorney General Eric Holder has no choice on this. He must go forward with this criminal case.
    He represents all Americans, not just the President, and he should follow the law.
    Let the process commence and let the chips fall where they may.

  8. NooYakk, one of the funiest comments I have ever read. Holder does not represent the people of the US, he never did and never will. He emphatically stated his "belief" system regarding prosecution and it had nothing to do with "the people" or "arbitrary legal precedents".

    My firm was contacted to represent a well respected academic and a president of a major university because of documents that were leaked after a judge had them sealed.

    Hmm, anyone think that the administration might have a little bit of incentive to start covering their tracks by playing the distraction game?

  9. What is more likely is that he was sloppy, and used his lover's computer for work, then failed to erase his trail. That sloppy behavior runs all through our upper echelons of military, business, and government.

  10. Attorney General Eric Holder has no choice on this. He must go forward with this criminal case.
    He represents all Americans, not just the President, and he should follow the law.
    Sarcasm, right?

  11. The standard for Petraeus is higher than that of an enlisted person. He must be punished to the full extent of the law or the message to not only the troops but to the broader country is that rules are for those without the power to alter them.

  12. Since the beginning of human civilization the rules have been for those without the power to alter them. That's precisely why so many work so hard to get power. I don't think we need to worry about sending the message that humanity remains the same. Petraeus may end up one of the rare exceptions, but it will be insignificant to the big picture.

  13. Thank you for making this point that the law is not applied blindly.

    Think of all those white collar crooks that headed up the mortgage-backed securities departments who knowingly committed fraud on a daily basis. Not a single one of these investment banking executives, whose bonuses depended on all the money that got made in that business, has ever done a single day behind bars.

    If the pattern holds true to form, Mr. Petraeus will also never see the inside of a jail cell.

  14. That message is already ringing in our ears so often that our eardrums have developed calluses.

  15. It's sad to think that Petraeus could be prosecuted and sent to prison basically for sharing with his "girl-friend". Still the breech of security is a criminal offense, and once you know about it, you have to make a decision. What is far more frustrating is the lack of charges for those who lied our way into war - who committed war crimes, covered up criminal activities and whose actions have made our world a much more dangerous place.

  16. Hmmm. Trading sex for access. Not exactly anything new. Mata Hari paid for this with her life, and wasn't there someone named Delilah mentioned in the Bible? Last time I checked, sharing with your "girlfriend" isn't an exception written into applicable law, and looking back to Mata Hari and Delilah, can be just as damaging as sharing confidential information with other pesons.

  17. It's not about "sharing" per se, and nobody's going to prosecute him for transferring GENETIC information (his DNA is not classified). But the information on Ms. Broadwell's computer, apparently, was highly classified.

  18. Suppose the "girl-friend" with whom he "was sharing" had been a carefully picked embedded spy? Both the Army and the CIA expressly forbid adultery for *just that reason.*

  19. What a joke. The guy is making a fortune and mccain is worried that we are losing his advice. His main claim to fame is paying millions of dollars to the sunnis in iraq to keep them quiet. The so called surge was a surge in dollars to the sunnis.

  20. Remember when both parties were trying to get him to run for President?

  21. Why bother. Hasn't he sacrificed enough. He has admitted his poor judgement, has quit the CIA, is no longer in the military, and her biography revealed nothing of any national security interest. If in the throws of passion he revealed his password to her slap him with fine and be done with it. The Justice Department has bigger fish to fry...

  22. Let's keep in mind that other DoD and CIA personnel who have released classified information to the press have had the book thrown at them. Harley's suggestion doesn't hold water.

    But don't be surprised to hear that he will be pleading guilty to a wrist-slap charge and receive a retroactive reduction of rank and a down-grade of his military pension, none of which would be likely to affect his consulting work.

  23. Isn't the justice department about exactly this kind of crime. Isn't that the FBI's job?

  24. Oh! So it is ok to give away secrets as long as you admit your crime?

  25. Don't we have more important matters to deal with? Focus our tax monies on feeding the poor, educating our youth, and aiding those out in the field trying to curb the spread of ISIS. Just don't indict him. We don't need to read endless media rehash about the affair. Let's move on to address real problems.

  26. Wouldn't it be hypocritical to let Petraeus get away with it when people under his command would have the book thrown at them. When did the US become an elitist society?

  27. I think our country is capable of multitasking. This crime should be prosecuted.

  28. You are exactly correct in saying there are other serious issues but that absolutely does NOT exclude prosecuting passing classified information! Having an affair does not give you privilege to do this and it needs to be stopped in its tracks.

  29. in the interest of fair play they have got to charge Petraeus. otherwise justice is not served.

  30. A sick and disgusting episode of lust, betrayal and shocking egoism and a total lack of judgment by the head of the CIA. Such incidents are usually not isolated either, so dig deeper. Broadwell had classified documents on her computer, Petraeus says he didn't give them to her, he care says Petraeus gave her access to his CIA computer and e-mail. This is just so simple...find the truth and if needed prosecute him to the full extent of the law.

  31. This was the fellow the outgoing Chancellor of CUNY wanted to set up in a cushy, almost no-show job at great expense. Student and faculty protests forced them both back to a position of a-dollar-a-year seminar, if my memory serves me correctly.

    I think that even at a dollar, CUNY is over-paying. This is NOT the model we want for our future leaders!

  32. The original position carried a salary of $150K per year. I know, becse my daughter is in the Macaulay Honors College of City University of New York, where he still "teaches." While his "salary" was supposed to be privately endowed, granting such a generous salary at time when tuition was being increased yet again created, as PR people say bad optics. So did the protests. His seminar is open to "hand-picked" students, those not likely to clash with him You'd think a West Point grad, holder of a PhD from Princeton, four-star general (an appointment requiring the advice and consent of the US Senate), and Director of Central Intelligence, could handle anything Public College Honors College Students could dish out. That administration seeks to "protect" him speaks volumes.

  33. A while back, somebody (not me!) on this forum rhymed "Petraeus" with "betray us" and was roundly criticized for doing so. Seems they were on to something.

    I can't begin to say how tired I am of "Leaders" who can't keep their pants zipped...

  34. His affair is none of our business.

    His unauthorized disclosure of classified information is very much our business.

  35. "Leaders" who can't keep their pants zipped -

    Are you referring to Bill Clinton?

  36. That was me! And while it seems longsighted, frankly I never thought this day would come. I hope he's dishonorably discharged and imprisoned.

  37. OK then, how did that classified information get onto her personal computer? Does he talk in his sleep?

  38. I suspect Sharyl Attkisson's lawyers have an answer to that.

  39. If Petraeus says he didn't do it but the Obama administration said he did, I know whom I believe. And it isn't Obama.

  40. You can reach conclusions a lot faster by eliminating the thinking part.
    And Petraeus hasn't said he didn't do it.

  41. The Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, whose entire educational and professional life was, until 2012, funded by US taxpayers, gives classified documents to his mistress, and we're seriously questioning whether he ought to be prosecuted? If anyone should be held accountable, it is he!

  42. I published quite bit about Iraq in the period 2006-2010. I was not and am not a Petraeus worshiper. On the other hand, he played a bad hand quite well in 2007-2008. True, the Surge was not a victory in the classic sense of the word, but it did represent a tactical success that gave Iraq a chance to reach some sort of political arrangement between the sects, while at the same time giving America (and the US Army) the opportunity to leave without its tail between its legs.

    I would give the general a pass on this, given his undeniable achievement in Iraq and his longtime service to our country. I have to wonder if he would take the soldier's way out if he was actually prosecuted. That would be far more tragic than any harm his pillow talk may have caused.

  43. How can you be a leader if you don't lead honestly and honorably? How can a country claim to deal decently with its troops when it allows the top men to cheat!

  44. Gosh, @leena, I don't know. How can you let guys like Cheney, Bush and Rumsfeld be leaders? If ever an axis of evil deserved to be called to account, it is they. At least Petraeus served honorably for decades, even if he is an egotistical, arrogant guy. Looks tome like a slow week at Justice, if this is all they have on their plate.

  45. Obviously he wasn't "allowed" to cheat. Obviously he has been punished and must live with his shame and tarnished record. What more would you impose on the man?

  46. Make the punishment severe enough, even for "golden boys" like Mr. Petraeus, and perhaps the next higher-up in the U.S. having an affair will not be so stupid. Otherwise I don't see how you get such behavior to stop, if people exercise such poor judgment while conducting clandestine affairs. Being seduced for secrets is as old as history, is it not?

  47. Exactly. What would we all be saying if Ms. Broadwell had been a Russian spy? It is ludicrous to give Mr. Petraeus a pass because of his military career. He used poor judgment, as he admitted, and I suspect (and expect) that he wouldn't allow such poor judgment from his previous subordinates at the CIA. For crying out loud!

  48. I never saw the "brilliance" of this man who was lauded by so many. He's obviously an adept political "operator" and knew how to navigate the halls of Congress and how to end up quite wealthy as a partner at KKR. So I repeat: I never saw any evidence of his "brilliance" for the job he supposedly was appointed to do. Now it turns out that he let information of a "national security" nature slip out while his fly was unzipped. Please remind me why we would prosecute Edward Snowden yet we could vet Petraeus and put him in charge of Iraq and then the CIA, get these results and then have the president speak of his illustrious career. The problem is that he was approved by everyone in power and they'll defend their bad decisions all the way down the line. And these are the people who decided to spy on you and me. Makes one feel very uncomfortable.

  49. letter of the year so far

  50. I say cut the guy some slack. Yes, he used poor judgment and lost his job as a result, but that doesn't justify a prison sentence, particularly in light of his distinguished service record.

  51. His career is certainly a factor worth considering if he is found guilty, but there needs to be a trial first. We don't "cut people slack" before even finding out what they may have done wrong.

  52. Like a lot of myopic military men, he thinks not only does he know the world, he is pretty damn special in addition. His media image concerns and interest in running for president had no business in his job in the military. Trying to be a politician and celebrity was not his job either, but he constantly acted like one. His lavish, totally unacceptable entertaining was yet another facet of this guy. His military service record was neither outstanding or distinguished. Think of Douglas MacArther or Alexander Haig. Out sized egos with no real basis for them. He should be prosecuted as among the few things he actually knows, he knows military order and procedures are not to be disregarded or trashed.

  53. Then let's let Ed Snowden off the hook.

  54. How do you justify the long list of prosecutions of other leakers, and the years they're spending in federal prison, if you let Petraeus off the hook for the same thing? The Obama administration has shocked me with their relentless, unprecedented pursuit of leakers, so why stop now? When Obama pardons Edward Snowden, I'll support a "boys will be boys" excuse for letting Petraeus off the hook. At least Snowden had noble motives, unlike Petraeus, who was pursuing a sexual relationship. What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.

  55. dumb. pettraeus did stupid guy thing. there are countless reasons why we just let him slink away. so lessers got hit. so the world isn't perfect. going after petraeus would cause more harm than good. let it go….

  56. Going "after" Petraeus would only cause harm to Petraeus, where it belongs. The military grunts at the bottom of the ladder should know that the rules apply to everyone...........

  57. Obama has a double standard, he is only human. I tend to think that where there is smoke, there is much more fire than is evident from the smoke. If Petraeus betrayed his wife of 37 years, what would keep him from betraying his country in the single-minded pursuit of vanity and sexual pleasure? I wonder if Petraus can be prosecuted under military law, criminal law, or both. The American people deserve an accounting of any compromises Petraus may have made in pursuit of his own self-interests during his tenure in power.

  58. And meanwhile back at the farm, so to speak, his wife Holly, was supporting military families and was honored for doing so.

    Too bad Gen. Petraeus was not so honorable. Sometimes the price paid for such dishonor is very high and here is an example. All the medals in the world cannot put Humpty Dumpty back together again this time around.

  59. Holly was given that job by the administration...why?

  60. Don't even try, Suzie. Don't attempt to shift blame from Petraeus to the President.

  61. Giving a pass to the well placed is a worse crime than than sharing secrets. Petraeus may have violated the trust of the American people, the military pledge he swore to and could have endangered our combat troops due to this transgression. He himself appears ready to have his day in court.

  62. So he used poor judgement . He was fooling around with a young woman and
    his judgement was hormonally impaired. He did a great job, is of value to the President and U.S. Military. Enough said. Look at John Kennedy and Newt
    Gingrich. They didn't set any great examples for keeping their pants zipped.

  63. We are supposed to be a nation of laws.

  64. He was a disastrous commander, pushing for the "surge." He was not good for the president or the country. He may have been good for the previous president. We know the level of that one.

  65. Tom, I think you missed the reason for the possible charges. It would be for sharing classified information to a person without the proper security clearance. The charges are not for having an affair.

  66. I hope it goes to trial. It would be great to have someone on trial who knows the inner workings of what has been going on. Between this, what the CIA did to the Senate Committee and what happened to that CBS reporter. We need a public trial to force accountability.

  67. Exactly. He says he didn't do it. We know they can plant classified information on your computer without your knowledge. It's been done.

  68. Why on earth is the AG even weighing in on this decision? This ought to be handled at the US Attorney level. The very act of the AG considering the case lends the appearance that the potential Defendant is getting special consideration because of his former position or rank.

    I have no idea whether the man is guilty or not. But indict him, let the prosecutor take his best shot, and let the chips fall where they may. If he's not guilty, hopefully the AUSA trying the case won't be able to persuade the jury. But Patraeus won't be the first guy who might beat the rap, but can't beat the ride. It happens every day somewhere in our criminal justice system. He shouldn't be treated differently than any other Defendant.

  69. The man was former DCIA, that is why the AGUSA is involved.

  70. Please , Mr. Holder don't set up a grand jury because he was a four-star (just decorative on his lapel - not earned ) General. Please don't give it any thought. Send him to prison because that is what he deserves. Putting his love-life before our country's security - he should be indicted for treason!!

  71. If General Petreus committed a felony in disclosing classified information to a female friend, he of all people should have known better and he should be charged with his transgression. I would not like to see him serving time for anything he might have done, but he should be charged and tried and if guilty he should acknowledge and apologize for a regrettable, if human, weakness.

  72. He should serve the same time as any other military member who shares classified information in exchange for sex. He is a disgrace.

  73. Why shouldn't he serve time if found guilty? Surely others who leak classified information end up in the brig.

  74. Just out of curiosity, why would you "not like to see him serving time for anything he might have done"?

  75. I'm less concerned about his keeping his fly zipped than his mouth. Of course he should be prosecuted--his "suffering" seems to be of the type that modern oligarchs have come to expect. He can plead guilty, forfeit his government pension, and do a little time in the brig--during which his KKR draw will be sent to Switzerland. Then Obama can pardon him on his way out, while most sentient Americans continue to shake their heads in resigned bemusement.

  76. Having deployed three times I have to say that ignoring his behavior sent a very strong message to us, the troops on the ground. This sort of corrosion in this case and others has led to a serious credibility problem in our military at every level. In addition those soldiers who knew about this and aided and abetted this behavior before he got out bear some culpability. One can expect that this breaking down of discipline and respect will lead many in the ranks to not fully do their duty and some others will die as a result.

  77. Excellent point, as. Petraeus' behavior is a disgrace to the "grunts" who got no special treatment and lost limbs from IED's.

  78. What?! You mean one of the good old boys may not get to just say, "Mistakes were made" and go about his business? Unbelievable!

  79. Yeah, just like Holder. See Fast & Furious, then try to make that same comment with a straight face.

  80. "Why bother" uhh maybe because people get fired/trialed for this ALL THE TIME

  81. I think a lot of this is designed to keep Patraeus out of politics. Plenty of fear of Petraeus exists in our political class. I read the book. Interesting. So let's hear what big secrets Patraeus let out of the bag....show me some facts guys.

    Tell me again how many generals Obama took down. How much did Obama like and follow their advice. Wonder what General McChrystal thinks of this situation with Patraeus?

  82. Give him a pass.

  83. No.

  84. SMH, what a bummer... I am still wondering, if he feels, it was worth it... What is wrong with some males? The humiliation, Mrs, Petraeus, has gone through. These women, seeking powerful males, make me sick. Of course, he could have done the smart thing. Remained faithful... Now, look at the mess. The pain for two families and the trust, gone... Charge him, he has more than $280,000.00 pension and should have that greatly reduced. He is just another dumb guy... She, the other woman, is just another dumb woman... No class, no excuses... Sigh...

  85. The power of a beautiful woman's allures can overwhelm the defenses of even the greatest general of the greatest nation in human history. A thing like this can not be diminished by any legislation or fear of retribution; it can only be compassionately forgiven. We can only hope no other harm has been done.

  86. So. . .you're saying that men (specifically) cannot be trusted with any degree of freedom? This is pretty sad.

  87. So let's see:
    Blow the whistle on unconstitutional activity? Prosecute to the fullest extent of the law.

    Hack the computers of congressional staff? Not even worth an investigation.

    Disclose classified information to your mistress? Requires further review.

    Got it.

  88. There has to be a M*A*S*H episode with Frank and Margaret that covers this. It has to be comical. The lady lives in Charlotte and disappeared for a while. She has hired Dee Dee Myers to help her image. Most people know what she is. What scares me is Petraeus put the nation at risk because of his actions. Had it been President Clinton, some news outlets, including some on the NYT staff would be livid and indignant. This is an easy call -- let a civilian jury sort it out.

  89. We do NOT yet know whether Petraeus put the "nation at risk" based on his actions.

  90. That's why he should be tried -- to find out the truth.

  91. The general must be prosecuted as we have done with others that have committed crimes. Of course we don't really know if he committed a crime so he is still innocent until we prove he is guilty. The notion that he was having an affair is between the general and his wife. A women having an affair with a married man usually can't be trusted.

  92. I don't recall prosecuting Sandy Berger for criminally removing classified documents from the National Archives...do you?

  93. Can the married man having the affair be trusted?

  94. It's very possible that the classified information on her computer consisted of the names of the members of the Afghan cabinet, or the results of the latest Iraqi election. The military classifies everything - a CYA and a result of their technical set-up. Is there any info about whether or not this "classified" information was something that was common knowledge (available in the pages of the NYT and elsewhere) or not? I think there is a growing tendency in the military to be careless with classified information because so much information that has no business being classified is.

  95. He's too close to the Admin for charges to be filed. Being the CIA director and a friend of the administration I'm sure he has a lot of information that can cause serious problems. My money is on this quietly disappearing.

  96. If the information he has is classified, then he won't be able to reveal it in testimony. If he blows it to the media, that should make for a very interesting sentencing hearing.

  97. It's time to mete out justice equally to all persons found guilty. Why should the powerful who commit crimes against the State.....Bush, Rumsfeld, Cheney and Petraeus among others......get away with it when we lesser beings would be sentenced without a thought.

    We deserve to live in a country that truly abides by the declaration: "with liberty and justice for all". And justice cuts both ways.

  98. Prosecute him. Bradley Manning (now Chelsea Manning) was sentenced to 35 years for leaking classified documents. The elite should pay a price as well rather than just the little guy/gal.

  99. About time. Now they should break him and take away his pension. A few years in the brig would be appropriate. Then out with no money and no more consultantships with the military industrial comples.

  100. To clarify... they both deserve the stockade and then DD!

  101. I guess my question is why wasn't Sandy Berger or William Webster get prosecuted when they also took/stole/misused classified information?

  102. Will these prosecutors be going after the administration that provided classified materials to the makers of Zero Dark Thirty? Will Kathryn Bigelow and Sony pictures be 'brought to justice'?

  103. This has been timed to silence Petraeus during the Benghazi hearings.

    This is Obama playing hardball.

  104. Which of the thirteen hearings are you referring to?

  105. You will never do anything in this world without courage. It is the greatest quality of the mind next to honor.
    Don't find fault, find a remedy

  106. Is there a back story behind this revelation? Why did the Attorney General take 3 years to decide whether to prosecute, and if Holder decide to prosecute General Petraeus, will he also be required to charge Paula Broadwell for similar crimes? This will certainly provide some voyeuristic distraction from the incessant coverage and speculations about the 2016 Presidential election.

  107. This is not a difficult issue. Mr. Petraeus should be treated no differently than any other CIA or Intelligence Community employee when it comes to disclosing classified information to an unauthorized person. If that's where the evidence points, he should be indicted and brought to trial. It will be another black mark for Attorney General Holder if he fails to do so.

  108. Don't we have more serious concerns?

  109. The point MAS is making is that we shouldn't have selective prosecution based upon political affiliation.

  110. That's an assumption and it's a tired one, at that. I have read nothing that leads me to believe that this is political. That's a claim made by those whose principles waver depending on whether or not the accused is on their team. It's sad and it's petty.

  111. Sandy Berger takes classified papers and stuffs them down his pants. Just a mistake--no prosecution for anything. Martin Indyk "mistakenly" takes his secure computer out of the Embassy and is reprimanded with a 90 day suspension, then back to work and promotions.

  112. Did they pass classified information to unauthorized people? No? Maybe that's why they weren't prosecuted.

  113. It would be a tremendous mistake to give General Petraeus a pass on the disclosure of classified information to an unauthorized party, particularly during the time he held the most sensitive intelligence job possible.

    It is irrelevant whether there is no evidence that it “in any way would have had a negative impact on our national security,” as Obama stated. And Obama should have known better.

    Performing extremely valuable service to the U.S., as Petraeus did, does not empower someone to break the law with impunity.

  114. If he did it, do him. The privileges of rank do not extend that far - I spent 20 years in the military, and he should be treated the same as he would treat others. Also, if he was helped in any way by other GIs, they should be gone after also. It may not be obvious to civilians, but even the lowest ranks know and understand what is going on.....

  115. It is ironic and sad to see the prosecution of General Petraeus for alleged security breaches but no prosecution or even investigation by this administration of the war criminals who tortured prisoners in their power to reveal information they did not possess or which did not even exist.

    General Petraeus never ordered the torture of prisoners to find the (non-existent) connection between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein, nor did he torture prisoners to reveal the (also non-existent) Iraqi nuclear program. Yet war criminals who did just that are walking about scot-free and making public statements that seem to revel in their crimes.

    "War criminals" is not an issue, but a fact. We executed Japanese for water-boarding US prisoners of war after WW II and at Nuremberg we dismissed the defense of Germans who said that they were only following orders and punished them harshly, sometimes with death.

    Petraeus has shown some bad judgment and made some mistakes. I doubt he has caused any great harm to our nation and our security. Dick Cheney has damaged this country in ways that may take generations to repair and yet he is not only at large, but seemingly under no threat of prosecution for his crimes.

    I call on President Obama and Attorney General Holder to reset the priorities of the Justice Department and to pursue the real criminals among us.

  116. "Harm" is not the problem. He violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which every GI understands, down to the very lowest rank. And expects it to be applied to all ranks......

  117. They should do that as well but not ignore what Petraeus did because you or anyone else find it a lesser crime. It's not a choice. They should proceed with prosecutions for all.

  118. On September 10, 2007 The New York Times printed an advertisement paid for by a group called MoveOn.org, in which Petraeus was referred to as "General Betray Us". There was a big backlash against MoveOn.org, and they rapidly backtracked.

    It may well be, that they had hit the nail on the head, even though their labelling of Petraeus could not been due to any knowledge of the issue at hand, which occurred later on.

    Like Nixon, Petraeus is a commander who lost his war; and therefore subject to the full force of the law.

    Victory, on the other hand, would have covered any level of perfidy on the part of either man - Petraeus might well be the forerunner for the 2016 Republican nomination, had we actually won in Afghanistan, and Nixon would be revered by Republicans the way Ronald Reagan is today.

  119. All this because he disagreed with Obama Iraq strategy. Thought this only happened in the Kremlin. What next, going to have him removed from old photographs?

  120. You think Obama made him head of the CIA as punishment?

  121. I suspect Justice is sitting on this because it would be difficult to prove any substantial damage from the allegations, and if the charges don't stick, it's going to look like a witch hunt.

  122. What's the matter with a "witch hunt"? This IS politics, you know.........

  123. It ought to be a no-brainer. Petraeus should be prosecuted based on the FBI inferences. But I doubt he will be because there exists a double standard. Remember that no one besides a few small-fry were made to stand trial and be punished for torture. This despite the Gen. Taguba report that said the torture led right up to the oval office.
    Apologists for Petraeus make the claim that he (singlehandly) helped to turn around the Iraq war. Not so. He was a Major general doing a good job and then as things got desperate, appointed to lead and promoted. With no authorization he (by his own admission) paid off the Sunnis to stop fighting the Shiites so we could leave without appearing to cut and run. See how successful that was. Those same Sunni are now ISIS.

  124. Yawn.
    Big deal. How secret were the secrets? So much of what gets classified is nonsense. Did any of the classified info get into enemy hands? Did ANY of it ever get out? If not, chastise the General, and let's move on.
    Double Yawn.

  125. Agree. This is just another tempest in a teapot.

  126. So the Obama administration claims they found classified information on Petraeus’ lover’s computer. First, I would consider the source. The Obama administration has not been the most forthcoming entity with the truth. And second, there’s the problem of Edward Snowden, who absconded with pretty much all of the classified info this country had…so I’m not quite sure we had not already seen and heard of what was on her computer. I hope he writes a book.

  127. The Petraeus/Broadwell scandal preceded Snowden's leaks by a couple of years, I believe.

  128. The mistake he made was disobey a commander in chief, that's why he needs punishment, what a Country we are.

  129. Isn't there a word for disobeying your CinC? Oh yeah--"insubordination."

  130. My comments appear to differ than the others. The General has served America and President Obama well. He fell in love and made terrible mistakes. His disgrace has been punishment. We need to show mercy.

  131. Nobody would say this about some captain or sergeant, they would be hammered.

  132. Can't find those IRS emails, but going after the General they found those emails real quick. Could it be that it's his fondness for Republicans is the actual crime?

    I see the NYT doesn't bring up the full page ad general betray us...

  133. Will Obama pardon him to keep him quiet?

  134. Like Scooter Libby?

  135. Justice Holmes? Really?? Think he'd have to be convicted of something first before he could be pardoned.

  136. Holder drug this out so Patreaus would keep his mouth shut, hopefully he will write a book exposing this administration for what it is, dishonest, corrupt and inept.

  137. You mean, like Nixon? And George W.? THAT kind of dishonest, corrupt and inept? Does the name Spiro Agnew ring a bell with you? Or Watergate?

  138. If Petraeus didn't do anything, why would Holder drag anything out? Moreover, what would Petraeus have to benefit from if he did nothing wrong?

    If Petraeus did do something wrong, why would Holder have to try and keep his mouth shut? You see a lot of felons publishing their stories from prison?

  139. No matter how successful, distinguished, intelligent and effective they may be, when some men get to a certain age, they lose all judgment where sexual behavior is concerned. I have seen it many times. Friends and associates lose all influence as these men march toward divorce, separation from their families, loss of their careers. disgrace, and, sometimes, impoverishment. Many of them know where their misconduct will lead, but they are helpless to back away. How are the mighty fallen.

  140. Thinking with the wrong organ.

  141. Considering all the leaks of actually important national security secrets from Obama administration officials to, among others, the New York Times, which promptly published them for the world to see, prosecuting this guy for showing off to his girlfriend is just bizarre.

  142. How about some examples of Obama administration officials who are believed to have leaked national security secrets but have been let off the hook? You'd better not be talking about Snowden!

  143. If you have proof of classified evidence, you should contact the FBI. If you don't then you are just repeating gossip and they have tea for that party you attend.

  144. Nixon looks like an Angel compared to this administration

  145. I do not see how Holder can possibly AVOID doing it!

  146. Steve P,

    Go back to the original sources and you will see the lowest level of
    cowardice in most of the people closest to Nixon. They feathered
    their nests to the Nth degree.

  147. Compared to the presidents we've had since then (Jimmy Carter excepted), I would forgive and take Nixon back in a nano-second. At the very least, and despite his personal psychology, he had the ability to make some hard decisions.

  148. He must know something very important for them to go to this length to keep him quiet. I hope he sees that there is no hope and reveal all he knows. Government employees that keep their mouth shut (Lois Lerner comes to mind) never get prosecuted.

  149. How does this keep him quiet? I don't get how that works.

  150. Well, Petraeus might want to review the Bob McDonnell trial in Virginia before deciding whether he has any interest in talking about a plea deal to spare himself and his family an embarrassing trial.

  151. The new CEO to be of Lockheed Martin stepped down within hours of Petraeus for the identical reason...makes t harder to be called to testify if not still employed by the offending company it would seem

    ......were they not shipping arms to AL Qaeda through Benghazi to Turkey then Syria...It almost appears they are going after Petraeus so he keeps his mouth shut, right Mr. Comey?

  152. Another rw hero falls. Some leader huh?

  153. Nearly every military leader in the nation is a Republican. Your head would be on a stake without them.

  154. As much as I dislike Petraeus, I think we need to change our policy. Everyone in Washington leaks information - whether to reporters, wives, girlfriends, golf buddies. We need to stop making this a crime, and simply demote/fire or ignore people who do this. I think 3 recent CIA directors have been accused/convicted of either taking classified documents home, stealing them from a library etc. This is all nonsense. So lets stop prosecuting government officials, or reporters, or even this dumb general.

  155. Please, do not even consider prosecuting this man until we have the bulk of the wall street mob behind bars.

  156. It isn't and should never be an either/or proposition. What Wall Street did is in no way related to what Petraeus did. No connection at all. Stick to the subject at hand.

  157. Seems to me to be the incompetent picking on the competent.

  158. >

    I'll believe it, when I see it.

  159. When you look at the full context of Petraeus's career this one blip seems insignificant. When you look at the past careers of those with high leadership roles who have been embroiled in scandal and went on, got past it and were the least worn for wear, proceeded to contribute to our national discussion, you feel this one should also be given a pass. ... In this time of encroaching terrorism around the world we should envelop his council and expertise to combat this scourge in the years ahead .

  160. If you look at a bank robber's career, it is not just "that one bank" which was a "blip" on his record..........

  161. Sometimes equal justice for all leads to the wrong result. When the greatest military leader of his time leaks classified information to his girlfriend, provided there was no substantial harm, this is one of those times. Obama has taken great steps in immigration by choosing not to prosecute 5 million deportation cases. If there was no great harm here this should be case 5 million and 1.

  162. He committed adultery under UCMJ. This is a crime. I think it's stupid but it is the law and hundreds or thousands of others have been prosecuted for this crime. If he disclosed national secrets or confidences to his paramour? Come on -- it is a crime.

  163. False equivalency.

  164. Let's focus on the charges. Whether Petraeus had an affair is irrelevant.

  165. There is no doubts that Mr Petraeus is an incredible patriot, especially for his unwavering devotion to the service of his country. In the time when our nation needed someone with astute judgment in the fight against extremism which has threatened the American way of life, and global peace as a whole, Mr Petraeus answered the call, for that we as a nation are indebted to him. As a public servant, one is held at a very high standard so Mr Petraeus should have been cognizant of that before indulging into infedelity, and I am incredibly disappointed; however, he is still a human who is subject to mistakes, regardless of his place in society. Also, he should have known that it is his responsibility to protect sensitive national security information regardless of the nature of threat that the breach of such information would cause. The question would be, was his intent unscrupulous when he leaked information to his allege girlfriend? And if the answer is undoubtedly yes, he should definitely be held accountable. I certainly don't think he was trying to jeopardize the security of our nation, but whatever the case maybe, justice must be served.

  166. How ironic and sad that a man of his learning, rank, and demeanor can be seduced by an attractive woman. It speaks volumes about how easy it was for him to compromise his values. I don't blame her. He should have known better. A court hearing should serve as a lesson to other leaders in the military, or in government who are a liability to this country by their actions.

  167. Don't let his mistress off the hook. We don't know who was the primary mover in their adulterous relationship. From what I read about her at the time, she was a social climber and name dropper. If she was the mover, shame on the general falling prey to it. If he was the primary mover, then his womanizing and pillow talk (which made its way onto her computer) disgraced his uniform and cruelly betrayed his wife and country. He should be prosecuted to get all of the facts on the table.

  168. Rank has its privileges, but they don't include immunity from prosecution. To those with the highest privilege goes the highest responsibility for probity. Prosecute him.

  169. Our President has said he has no plan for defeat of IS. This week another great example of our present ineptitude in Iraq was announced when it was revealed our weaponry, body armor and armored vehicles are being used by Iranians. We just found out the tribal attacks are continuing and the new Iraqi President doesn't think it can be stopped ala Al Maliki whom our President was instrumental in getting rid of. Why would we expect him to have a plan, a man with no military experience or understanding; when the most well qualified, most expert American military men, who have vast experience in military matters are side lined, the subject of political attacks and fired and now one is under threat of indictment. This is a statement related to many senior military men. This has been a trend throughout the Obama administration. No wonder.

  170. Apparently, your " finest minds, now sidelined" weren't able to handle what another "fine Texas mind, G.W.Bush" got us into. Hope he's still cutting brush on the ranch!

  171. Prosecuted? Petraeus saved the surge by unilaterally buying off Sunni warlords with $400 million. A brilliant move! He's an American hero.

  172. He's a traitor that handled classified material like it had no importance. He has no morals or principles and is certainly not the family values man that the right wing would pretend he is.

  173. ...thought you spent 33 years in the legal profession?

    an accusation of guilt is not the same thing as guilt. sorry but you need to let a trial and a conviction get in the way before you get to call him a traitor.

    you'll see from my other posts that I'm no petraeus fan but i would want him to have the same due process that i would want in the same circumstance and the same that you had in your incident while enlisted in the usmc

  174. ...my apologies, i meant "23 years in the legal profession" not "33 years". regrets if i made you feel older than you actually are....

  175. This generation's MacArthur. Another pompous, ego-driven hack flattered by the media into believing his own PR. He let the CIA and Halliburton run wild.

  176. Wonder if he made millions off of Halliburton like Cheney and W did via Halliburton's involvement in their Iraq fiasco.

  177. There is more to this folks than the writer or story suggests. Petraeus knows what went down in Bengazi and knows Obama, Clinton's and Holders cover up in those murders.

  178. At last, the conspiracy theorists have finally arrived and the gloves are off at the NYT.

  179. Gen. Petraeus is not just a former commanding general, but he us a great patriot and one of the few war heroes of this generation. For the likes of Holder and Obama to even consider prosecuting him and sending him to prison is an absurdity.

    In fact, the people who should be tried and sent to prison include, Obama, Holder, Jarrett, and a few others. They are absolutely criminals of our time who have lied, cheated, and covered-up for other dishonest people in the Administration.

    If they dare to prosecute Petraeus, they'll have a citizen revolt on their hands.

  180. You might want to rethink that comment since Petraeus said
    “It marks an important victory for our agency, for our intelligence community, and for our country. Oaths do matter, and there are indeed consequences for those who believe they are above the laws that protect our fellow officers and enable American intelligence agencies to operate with the requisite degree of secrecy.”
    He was speaking about the Kiriakou’s conviction at the time.

  181. The War in Iraq was the biggest military debacle of our lives outside of Viet Nam. Billions of our money, burned, squandered. The actual war criminals, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, et. al. still breathe free air but you want to go after members of the current administration? Idiocy.

  182. If Petraeus was as great a man as you say, he would not have forsaken his duty and honor in the course of also cheating on his wife. Checkmate.

  183. So many variables here. What was the information? How classified was it? What could have the consequences been?

    The fact she had it on her computer makes me think it was not extremely detrimental information.

    Essentially, the world is not as cut and dry as people try to make it. Its impossible to take a side here without knowing more.

    On a side note, this goes to show what a woman can do to a guy. This Petraeus character is a disgrace to the male gender.

  184. Let the TRIAL determine if things were serious enough, and the sentence might be based on the gravity of the proven charges.

  185. So you shift the entire burden of responsibility to the woman involved and not the 4-star general? How convenient. I actually think the man did this to himself.

  186. This is another window into the strength of weaknesses. Yet again, the pull of a human weakness outweighs professionalism, training, family. It's a reminder not to be shocked when someone "who doesn't look the type," "was idolized," or whatnot is a person like the rest of us.

  187. Sad situation for all the concerned individuals, even sadder for the military and the country. Leadership is not just being the boss or being smart, it's also about setting an example for others to follow.

  188. How is this for setting an example?:
    If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.
    If you like your policy, you can keep your policy.
    Obamacare will cost the average family $2,500 less.
    The attack on the Benghazi consulate was spontaneous and caused by a youtube video.
    I could go on and on about the leadership you spoke of and the examples the president displays to all Americans.

  189. An incredible mistake for the Director of the CIA. Too bad the general's mind was disabled by his zipper. He should be prosecuted and, if found guilty, punished. If anything, the fact that he was DCIA makes his decisions even more outrageous.

  190. For those who see political motives, understand this. The case has gone through the career professionals and they have recommended prosecution. The head of the FBI has weighed in, but he is not known to be terribly partisan. The politics kick in now, with Holder, who weighs the prosecution decision from a whole different perspective. To this point, case decisions have mostly been nonpartisan. Those who see political purposes so far are most likely jumping the gun.

  191. Petraeus' military service to the country is irrelevant as to whether or not he should be criminally charged. Not to prosecute Petraeus will only deepen the mistrust and cynicism that a majority of Americans have of this country's justice system and will do great harm to this country's democratic and political institutions.

  192. Holder isn't worthy of carrying Petraeus' mess kit.

  193. “Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours...”

  194. Holder doesn't need to be worthy of any of that. He just needs to bring Petreus to justice.

  195. Wow, 16 of the first 17 comments I read in some way blame Obama for this. I find it hard to believe that this is representative of NYT readers. Call me paranoid (and maybe I am, seriously) but I smell shenanigans.

  196. Sad testament of the times, isn't it?

  197. Just think, he could have retired and lived a fantastic life, instead he takes the CIA job and royally screws up everything.

  198. No, even worse, he takes a job with KKR and screws the whole of society doing private equity deals. So much for decades of serving the country -- now it's cash-in time.

  199. Am I crazy or were very similar articles published before? Do we have to hear about Petraeus and his lover/biographer again and again?

  200. He is the *only* reason Iraq didn't fall into irrevocable civil war and that is the *only* reason the US was able to exit Iraq with even a shred of national integrity. He nearly single handedly won the war that Bush and Rumsfeld lost. We owe him a tremendous amount and he has already suffered sufficiently for his personal relationship mistakes. Just give the man a presidential pardon.

  201. He bought off the Sunni tribes. They then attacked the Al Qaeda.
    It wasn't great military genius. Please

  202. Too many comments suggest these leaks were the result of a sexual liaison. These leaks were made to give Paula material because Petraeus's amorata was writing a hagiographical biography of him. The only glory attaching to Petraeus is the result of self glorification.

  203. "F.B.I. agents discovered classified documents on her computer after Mr. Petraeus resigned from the C.I.A. in 2012 when the affair became public.
    Mr. Petraeus ... has said he never provided classified information to Ms. Broadwell..."

    Either she is a hacker, or Sen. McCain has gone off the deep end again, voicing his concern that Mr. Petraeus is necessary for the Nation's security.

  204. Or it was placed there by the same people who disrupted Sheryl Atkissons computer and planted files there. She is pretty sure she would have been accused for having them.

  205. Or Petraeus is lying.

  206. If the US Courts obey their Constitutional duty to dispense equal justice to all its citizens, the Military Court must apologize to Bradley Manning for the torture we subjected him to and President Obama must pardon Edward Snowden. Then I would agree that his pardon of General Patreaus would be in the best interest of our Country in this politically polarized time.

  207. It's incredibly revealing how many comments are posted on this thread that attempt to steer the discussion away from Mr. Petraeus and his irresponsible, unethical, immoral, unprincipled and, yes, illegal behavior, and onto someone...anyone from the Democratic side of the aisle. Contrary to what so many here seem to believe, this is not a game and his mishandling (intentional or otherwise) of classified information is no game. Given his prior standing in the military, he was/is expected to conduct himself at a higher standard than those he commanded. He failed to do so and should be held accountable to the fullest extent that the law allows. To do anything else is to send a morale-crushing message to those in uniform that should never, ever be sent.

    Stop the politics and the childish diversionary games, people. This is about Petraeus...his actions and his failures of duty. It is about no one and nothing else.

  208. Katie,
    Would it be too much to ask you to wait on judgment until Patreaus is found guilty, should that take place?
    Have you stopped to think what the reason may be that Patreaus is not dealing with negotiations and is willing to go to trial?
    This is an effort to keep him quiet about something, as this supposedly took place four (4) years ago and now for some reason it comes to the forefront?
    This probably is taking place at the instructions of Hillary Clinton and her run for the Presidency in 2016. That and because of the Congressional hearing on Benghazi that is not going to go away, like the others.

  209. Ask Sharyl Attkisson about how her computers were hacked during the same time frame and some confidential documents were "planted" on her computer. She has filed suit against the government.

    Obama was getting ready to fire Mr. Petraeus about the same time. As slimy as this administration is, it would not surprise me if the FBI or NSA planted those records on Paula Broadwell's machine to make sure Obama had a case to fire Mr. Petraeus. Consider how the administration continues to withhold documents unless ordered by the courts and even then efforts to delay the documents are made. How about the lost e-mails belonging to Lois Lerner.

  210. they are 'steering" it that way because it was chosen to be leaked right at the end of a Presidential Campaign, to deflect the media attention from the President who was not doing very well at the time.

  211. "Well a hard headed woman
    A soft hearted man
    Been the cause of trouble
    Ever since the world began, Oh yeah"
    --Elvis Presley--

  212. I used to admire and hope Mr. Petraeus would run for president, but no longer. With power comes great responsibility. I cannot imagine giving the man the greater power of the White House after what he had done as a general and a CIA director.

  213. I'm just curious -- how does the Justice Department go from finding classified information on Paula Broadwell's computer to assuming that General David Petraeus necessarily gave it to her? Could she not have stolen it from him?

    That wouldn't excuse his poor judgment in having an extramarital affair while heading up the CIA in the first place, but it would downgrade the behavior from willful negligence instead to just stupid carelessness on his part. It also makes you wonder just how close Monica Lewinsky was in getting away with classified material from Oval Office computers despite Democrats' claims that it was no big deal, although a naïve 19-year old intern doesn't raise near the alarm bells that someone of Ms. Broadwell's stature does.

  214. You will have to wait for a court trial for the evidence you seek.

  215. To a lot of people,this Petraeus is a hero.Mr Obama even call Petraeus is an experienced leader.All this Petraeus did was throwing the dollars anywhere he went and the Arab were busy to pick-up the dollars and forgot to fight the American forces.I wonder how this experienced leader will do when he encountered a REAL ARMY insteads of a band of an armed men.....

  216. As a retired Regular Officer, he is held to a higher standard and should be held accountable for incredibly poor (zipper) judgement

  217. A speedy and fair prosecution and trial is warranted, especially given the high position of trust he was in.

    And the carrying-ons that led to the potential felony charges were obviously not a simple lapse "after being married for over 37 years." But never underestimate the power and lure of "the affair"—and all that goes with it.

    Profound disappointment in Mr. Petraeus.

  218. Having an affair with your 'biographer' is so Gary Hart or John Edwards. Cheap and pathetic, but it is good to see at least that Petraeus had a pulse.

    That said....

    Paula Broadwell was pretty hot. If she were writing my autobiography I'm certain I would have cratered as well.

    I always have thought of Petraeus as a craven, egotistical, political driven hack. The antithesis of who should lead our military.

    This only confirms that for me.

    Indict him, try him, convict him. But I certainly understand.

  219. Too bad. They look quite happy together.

  220. I had that thought momentarily, but then I started thinking about how Paula Broadwell ended up cyberstalking another woman. This was a serious error in judgement by Petraeus.

  221. Hopefully, we show to the World at large that here we do not subscribe to the philosophy of some being more equal than others!

  222. The case against General Petraeus is built upon the fruit of a poison tree. The boys from Hoover's outhouse have over- stepped the powers of search and seizure. We have filled the FBI with Lilliputian pigmies capable of raising political backstabbing to felony retribution. Our enemies must be very joyful.

  223. Do you have better information on this case than the FBI?

  224. He was the Director of Central Intelligence, the highest ranking intelligence officer in the country. He leaked to his mistress/biographer/hagiographer. He might as well have been a mole.

  225. No excuse for releasing classified information to an unauthorized person. This is what happens when you let your penis do your thinking rather than your brain.

  226. The dumb stick has done in many a man.

  227. I anticipate a reprise of "General Petraeus or General betray us?".

  228. holder's job has been to protect the powerful.
    and despite petraeus's disgraceful exit, i suspect he retains a power base of some very influential friends.

  229. Influential friends? Seems far more likely that the former General had very influential enemies -- especially in the Army.

  230. The apologists for Petraeus on these posts are alarming. I wonder if they use the same reasoning for a 12 year old playing with a toy gun or a guy selling cigarettes on the side walk and was choked by the police? How many justify stop and frisk of young black and Latino males simply because they are young black and Latino and not guilty of anything except living?

    To read some of these comments is sickening and appalling that we can excuse one of the highest leaders of the land who not only betrayed the trust of his wife, but also his position. What a wonderful example to the lower rank and file. And how convenient to speculate that they are going after him because they are trying to cover up something? Surely that would make him spill his guts quicker.

    Grow up and let go of your hatred of The President for goodness sake.

  231. Petraeus should have known better then leaking information.

    My problem with this story is that he is using his reputation to lobby for KKR. For you less educated Kolberg Kravis Roberts is a notorious leveraged buyout firm. He should be ashamed.

  232. Holder, obviously, is delaying any action here hoping that he will have resigned as Attorney General (which is about to happen any time now) so Loretta Lynch will make the decision. She is a straight forward tough lady and will prosecute Petraeus as dictated by law.

  233. President Nixon was pardoned, so why not Petraeus? All those years of service by both men meant something.

  234. The pardon for Nixon was a serious mistake, just like the tacit pardons for the torturers of the Bush administration.

  235. These people have paid enough. Their careers have been ruined and they have had to make make whatever amends they can to their spouses, and in a marriage the scar of infidelity often lingers. They have both apologized and I believe their apologies to have been sincere. I read Broadwell's book when it first came out and there was no classified information that couldn't be found in a hundred other places, which is to say, if there was classified information at all, that information was commonplace. Petraeus was a godsend in helping us to get out of a war that we shouldn't have fought in the first place, a first-rate general. On the the hand, we have millions of people who have lost their jobs, their homes, and their health insurance thanks to Wall Street. You can devise CDOs designed to fail, bet against them and make billions without a hint of prosecution coming your way in the financial world. And yet we want to prosecute Patraeus and Broadwell? Give me a break.

  236. Just because it wasn't published in her book doesn't mean there was far more classified information that came into her possession via Petraeus. And she and Petraeus aren't being prosecuted for their immoral conduct in an extra-marital relationship. The charges against Petraeus, if they come, are about things far more serious and that should not be ignored simply because you or others like him.

  237. While America has a long history of revering its war-heroes -- Washington, after all, was the first president -- it also behooves us to forgive those who have fallen from grace. To do less is to advance the implausible idea that a perfect American hero actually does exist. We should be lucky at all that volunteers such as David Petraeus actually take a bullet for us on the front lines in the name of those ideals we so casually exercise on this forum.

  238. We don't and shouldn't cherry pick those whose crimes we deem forgivable and those whose crimes we deem worthy of prosecution. All held to the same standards. Anything less and our entire nation is a fraud and we should admit as much and stop touting ourselves as the shining beacon for the rest of the world to emulate.


  239. How is Petraeus a war hero? For doing what? Shall we consider Iraq his handiwork? Afghanistan?

  240. Sorry, but I have to remind you of Audie Murphy. He was and still is the closest we had to perfect. Selfless, honest to a fault, fearless, and a man of continuing integrity. Even later in life with major money trouble, he turned down offers to appear in tv commercials to sell booze and I think cigarettes because he did not feel that was being a good role model.
    The trash we have now cannot hold a candle to the heros of the past.

  241. Surely we have better things to do than to look for ways to prosecute General Petraeus.

  242. The problem is that the government doesn't have to look for ways, Paula Broadwell already provided them. What don't you understand about providing classified information to an unauthorised person? The only shoe that hasn't already dropped is whether Paula had access to the Director of the CIA's CIA email account. Doesn't take too much imagination to figure out why that is a serious criminal offense and an even more serious security breach.

  243. He will face as much prosecution as former Sen. John Ensign, i.e., none, for the same reason - both are affiliated with The Fellowship/The Family/C Street/National Prayer Breakfast.
    Doug and David Coe train their disciples, like Mark Sanford, James Inhofe, Sam Brownback, Hillary Clinton and scores of others in politics, business, the Pentagon that they are anointed by God to lead. These Christians have NO humility.
    Due to his 'friendship' with Sen. Dr. Tom Coburn, I have been concerned for years that Obama was involved with this group, too. The failure to prosecute Ensign and, now Petraeus (see Jeff Sharlet's book 'C Street') makes that look depressingly more likely.

  244. I'm going to share a personal experience from my military service in the USMC because it's relevant to this article in a tangential way.

    One of my collateral duties while in the Marine Corps was handling the classified information vault. I was assigned that responsibility with one other NCO in my command and we were supervised by a 1st Lieutenant.

    While on deployment during a training exercise, at a time when I was assigned responsibility for an attache holding classified information, I sliced open my thumb all the way down to the bone. It was a severe enough injury that I was shuttled off to the military hospital for treatment. In that brief moment of pain and chaos, I left the attache case behind in a secured area inside the intelligence tent at our deployment site. I breached all protocols for proper handling of classified information and I was removed from the classified vault and all my duties related thereto taken away. I did not lose rank but I was disciplined and had to forfeit 3 months of pay, as a result. I was given no pass, no mercy and it was appropriate that I was not. I learned an important and costly lesson that day.

    General Petraeus was far more irresponsible and neglectful than was I and his failures were done at a time when the nation was at war. He should be held responsible to the fullest extent the law allows because he did, in fact, put the nation at risk. Giving him a pass would send the absolute worst message to those in service.

  245. Well said Katie. Petraeus's punishment to date has been a $220k/year pension, mid five-figure speaking engagements, fat pay from corporate board memberships and now most despicably appointed CEO of a division of KKR, one of the buy-out/private equity firms that has destroyed the US manufacturing base, looted pensions, and ruined tens of thousands of American lives and likely prevents possibly you, but surely tens of thousands of your USMC comrades from getting decent jobs at home after risking life and limb for their country.

    What did I miss? Aside from great self-promotion resulting in very high rank, what did this Petraeus accomplish? Subduing the Kurds? Oh wait, they are ostensibly on our side.

    By the way, when did Petraeus lose his gray hair? It looks like he has the same colorist as Sheldon Adelson.

  246. katie

    thank you for your service.

    it would be nice if petraeus and other senior ranking individuals were held to the same standards but based on my service experience it's not even close to likely. too much carpet in senior officials' offices to sweep things under

  247. Katie, THANK YOU for your service.

  248. If Petraeus is suspected of breaking the law, he should be charged. It's irrelevant that he presided over failed wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that killed mostly civilians, killed or permanently maimed thousands of Americans, and helped lay the groundwork for sectarian rule, the rise of ISIS, and the renewed vibrancy of the Taliban. Wisdom, Mr. McCain? Or just your kinda guy?

  249. He's an American hero with a weakness for younger attractive women... We can forgive this.

  250. It's not my place or yours to forgive him for his infidelity to his wife or his violation of UCMJ. That's not why he's been investigated.

  251. Is there anyone else in government who you would approve of if they gave classified information to, essentially, someone off the street?

  252. That is YOUR opinion. It is NOT my opinion.

    Throw the book at him. The more senior the officer, the more one expects that he will "toe the line."

    Admiral Mike Boorda committed suicide when he was called out for wearing a V he did not earn on a medal.

    Here we are talking possible mishandling of classified information. That beats wearing the wrong medal by a mile.

    While rank has its privileges, it also has its *RESPONSIBILITIES.*

  253. I'd be quite surprised if Petraeus ever ends up in a public trial. As the article points out, Petraeus "has said he never provided classified information to Ms. Broadwell, and has indicated to the Justice Department that he has no interest in a plea deal that would spare him an embarrassing trial." Unless this statement indicates a last-ditch, desperate gambit of bravado, it suggests that Petraeus -- who undoubtedly has picked up some tactical skills during his career -- is not going to go gentle into that good night. There is little doubt that a former 4-star General and Head of the CIA knows where at least some bodies are buried. Leaked information posted on Wikipedia by an "unscrupulous" military contractor is one thing: a player of Petraeus' stature prepared to tell all he knows on a witness stand is quite another. Petraeus may be culpable for some ill advised pillow talk, and surely no one is silly enough to believe powerful men will behave as boy scouts. Finally, after he supervised a war that was begun as a pre-emptive strike and sold to the American public on false pretenses is his morality even worth discussing. No, I don't think anyone in a leadership role -n the Bush or Obama administration will want to see Petraeus take the stand.

  254. He would likely fall off a ladder, have a car "ACCIDENT", or shoot himself in the head 12 times.