Petraeus letter: I showed extremely poor judgment
Petraeus became CIA director in September 2011.
November 9th, 2012
03:19 PM ET

Petraeus letter: I showed extremely poor judgment

Here is the full text of a letter ex-CIA Director David Petraeus sent to colleagues after he submitted his resignation to President Obama:


Central Intelligence Agency

9 November 2012

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

Filed under: CIA
soundoff (342 Responses)
  1. ProperVillain

    " I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair"

    A non-apoplogy apology if I ever heard one...

    November 9, 2012 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • J M

      The only people he owes an apology to are his family and those directly involved. Get over yourself if you think he owes you one.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. bobcat (in a hat)©

    Phew. I'm going to grab my steel umbrella. These conspiracy theories are raining down hot and heavy. Get a grip people. Not everything is about coverups.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jim

    Poor guy did his job well and has to step down for this silly reason? sily

    November 9, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • security breach

      There are no details. Who was the woman (assuming it was with a woman)? Was there a risk to national security by opening himself up to blackmail? Bad decision on his part, but obviously resignation was the right move. If he hadn't the full details would have been made public and he would probably leave in disgrace.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Huh

    This has to be move from someone(White House?). On the other hand, if the CIA director can't keep an affair secret is he qualified to handle national security secrets? Really. Not a reason for resignation. Army general, affair, stupid.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Mark

    Poor judgement is betting on the Cubs to make the series. Stupidity is throwing away everything for a piece of a...... And I really admired this man. Pathetic.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  6. mariner v

    Gee, what a surprise. This is not a new story. Men just can't keep their libido in check and it brings down generals, politiicans and even the clergy. So much for duty, code, honor, ethics, principles and so on and so forth. At the end of the day, when push comes to shove, power the ultimate aphrodisiac, will take emperors down. In other words, the house always wins, men just can't resist the promise of getting a little extra "Attention" if you will. Proceed with caution and always wear your gloves, there's a general in the house!

    November 9, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  7. westsacvoice

    Good thing he was already out of the Army. This would have been conduct unbecoming of an officer and he could have served time or been dishonorably discharged.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • security breach

      Not so sure about that. I'm willing to accept the idea that a good number of the men around the table of the joint chiefs of staff have mistresses on the side.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • American Soldier

      lol. No he wouldn't. At his rank had he still been in, he would just been forced to retire and that's it. Nothing would have happened to him.

      November 9, 2012 at 8:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Norvy

      Security Breach, I agree with you.

      November 9, 2012 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jim

    Given timing and him saying he was looking forward to testifying when he still can, but won't, this is beyond obvious. But watch the Leftists just gargle with and then swallow their koolaid. No lower iq idiots out there evidenced by their electing an idiot trying to fulfill the communist dreams of his father he chronicled, but no one on the left apparently read.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Brad

    Oh no, Petraeus BetrayUs

    Tarpon Springs FL

    November 9, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
  10. mj

    Convenience. Now he won't have to testify 4 days from now. Clinton, as President, fooled around in the Oval Office bathroom and did not resign.

    November 9, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Norvy

    While I do not condone his cheating, Petraeus' entire career should not be judged simply on an extra-marital affair. If so, some of the world's most prominent men are guilty and should lose their jobs. An unfortunate situation...

    November 9, 2012 at 8:51 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Norvy

    Jim, just a note: College graduates overwhelmingly vote Democrat, including this election; do the research before you make a statement based upon hatred instead of facts.

    November 9, 2012 at 8:56 pm | Report abuse |
  13. true justice

    We now know what the "little general" was doing when he and Obama, The Butcher of Benghazi, let 4 American hero's die for political reasons. Both should be charged with Treason.

    November 9, 2012 at 9:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Denser

      Go back home to fox.

      November 9, 2012 at 9:19 pm | Report abuse |
  14. wa2go

    Why would Petraeus Betray Us ? Alas, we are not imbeciles. His resignation obviously had nothing whatsoever to do with any extramarital affair, if in fact there even was one.

    November 9, 2012 at 9:13 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ezra2662

    This guy was a great person. People make mistakes in their personal lives but that doesnt necessarily affect their job performance. You're still a hero David.

    November 9, 2012 at 9:30 pm | Report abuse |
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