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Washington sex scandal

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.
November 12, 2012 1:47:51 PM PST
Is it an old-fashioned Washington sex scandal? Yes. Is it more than that? There are many who are asking that question tonight about former CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus.

Not hard to understand the questioning of all this. How to explain so many strange twists and turns in this career-military-man-cheats-on-his-wife-with-his-adoring-and-much-younger-biographer who also happens to be a wife and mother?

Why was the FBI brought into it, based just on an average citizen's complaint that she was getting an harassing email? Was it a favor for a friend, and then it was discovered that the Director of the CIA was involved? Oy.

And should others have been notified - like peeps in Congress, or the White House, or somebody? Lots of folks asking that question.

And then there are the personal questions that fascinate - at least they fascinate me. Does Gen. Petraeus watch "Homeland," the cable TV series about the CIA, and one agent sleeping with the suspected enemy? And when did the feeling of dread come over the General? When did he realize that this woman he had taken up with - he insists it was after they had been together in Afghanistan, and after he left the military - was perhaps coocoo over Cocoa Puffs for him and was making weird accusations to other women about him? We learned today, that a friend close to Petraeus says the general was "shocked and surprised" when he learned Paula Broadwell, his mistress, had been sending anonymous emails to Jill Kelly, a family friend of the Petraeus'. The friend claims Petraeus learned of all this during his FBI interview the week of October 29.

I know there are some out there who think there was some grand conspiracy to hush-hush the whole scandal until after the election, but it's hard to imagine how this would have hurt or helped either Pres. Obama or Mitt Romney - especially because Petraeus served under both Democratic and Republican Presidents, and because the FBI agent who was investigating this as a personal favor for a friend in Florida, reached out to one of the most anti-Obama Congressman in the House - Majority Whip Eric Cantor. And he said nothing about it.

Anyway, it's a huge talker, and it's filled with intrigue, both official and personal. And it's sad, the whole thing.

We'll have any new developments, tonight at 11.

Also at 11, we'll have the latest on the disaster after the disaster, as the tri-state continues to recover from Hurricane Sandy. We're looking at gas rationing (New Jersey's ends tomorrow, New York City's continues), power outages, housing problems for those whose homes were destroyed, schools that are still closed.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Meteorologist Lee Goldberg on a big change in the weather coming tomorrow, and Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.

BILL RITTER

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