Petraeus resignation letter - KMSP-TV

CIA Director David Petraeus resigns because of extramarital affair

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CIA Director David Petraeus has resigned due to an extramarital affair.

According to his letter of resignation, Petraeus approached President Obama on Thursday, and on Friday the president accepted his resignation.

After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair," Petraeus said in his resignation latter, dated Nov. 9. "Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours."

Petraeus has been married for 37 years to Holly Petraeus. The couple met when he was a cadet at West Point. 

Holly Petraeus also works in the Obama administration, for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.


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


David Petraeus 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, where he helped our nation put those wars on a path to a responsible end. As Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, he has continued to serve with characteristic intellectual rigor, dedication, and patriotism. By any measure, through his lifetime of service David Petraeus has made our country safer and stronger.

Today, I accepted his resignation as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. I am completely confident that the CIA will continue to thrive and carry out its essential mission, and I have the utmost confidence in Acting Director Michael Morell and the men and women of the CIA who work every day to keep our nation safe. Going forward, my thoughts and prayers are with Dave and Holly Petraeus, who has done so much to help military families through her own work. I wish them the very best at this difficult time.

The White House says President Obama will hold a news conference on the matter Wednesday.


Petraeus was due to appear before Congress to be questioned about the embassy attack in Benghazi.

U.S. officials released new details on the response in Libya in an effort to refute news reports that CIA personnel were told to "stand down" rather than rush to the consulate's aid.

Details from the Pentagon show the first U.S. military unit arrived in Libya more than 14 hours after the attack in Benghazi was over and Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were already dead.

The Defense Department timeline obtained by The Associated Press underscores how far the military response lagged behind the Sept. 11 attack, due largely to the long distances the teams had to travel to get to Libya.

Petraeus commanded U.S. military forces in Iraq, and later in Afghanistan, before taking the CIA directorship in September of 2011.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report

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