CIA Director Petraeus Quits Over Extramarital Affair - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

CIA Director Petraeus Quits Over Extramarital Affair

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WASHINGTON (AP/NewsChannel 5) - CIA Director David Petraeus has submitted his resignation to President Obama, citing an extramarital affair.

In a statement sent to the CIA workforce today, Petraeus said he went to the White House Thursday to ask the president to accept his resignation. The president accepted his resignation today.

"After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair," Petraeus said in the letter to the CIA workforce. "Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours."

Petraeus took over as director of the CIA in September 2011. In his opening statement during his confirmation hearings for the position, Petraeus praised his wife Holly Petraeus, who now serves as assistant director of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. "Holly was recently described as being bright, nice, small, and a pit bull - someone you want in your corner," he said. "I have been blessed to have had her in my corner for some 37 years and 23 moves."

An extramarital affair could have serious implications in the intelligence agency, given that it could potentially lead to security leaks.

In a statement, Mr. Obama said he is "completely confident that the CIA will continue to thrive and carry out its essential mission," adding that he has the "utmost confidence" in Acting Director Michael Morell and the CIA workforce.

The president said his "thoughts and prayers" are with Petraeus and his wife, and he praised Petraeus for his long history of serving the nation. "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," Mr. Obama said. "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."

 Director of National Intelligence James Clapper similarly said in a statement that the CIA director's decision "represents the loss of one of our nation's most respected public servants."

 "From his long, illustrious Army career to his leadership at the helm of CIA, Dave has redefined what it means to serve and sacrifice for one's country," he said.

Petraeus took over as director of the CIA in September 2011. He retired from the Army as a general after 37 years to take the position offered to him by President Obama.

Petraeus took over as head of U.S. Central Command in October 2008 after executing the troop surge in Iraq in 2007.

During his military career, the four-star general once commanded soldiers at Fort Campbell. General Petraeus said at a lecture at Vanderbilt in 2010 that he still thinks fondly of Middle Tennessee.

(Copyright The Associated Press/NewsChannel 5.)

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