Scott Shane in the New York Times gives us the Petraeus timeline and does his best to bury both the lede and the story’s implications.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department were notified in the late summer that F.B.I. agents had uncovered what appeared to be an extramarital affair involving the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, David H. Petraeus, government officials said Sunday.
But law enforcement officials did not notify anyone outside the F.B.I. or the Justice Department until last week because the investigation was incomplete and initial concerns about possible security breaches, which would demand more immediate action, did not appear to be justified, the officials said.
The new accounts of the events that led to Mr. Petraeus’s sudden resignation on Friday shed light on the competing pressures facing F.B.I. agents who recognized the high stakes of any investigation involving the C.I.A. director but who were wary of exposing a private affair with no criminal or security implications.
A dozen grafs later, Shane offers this gem:
Under military regulations, adultery can be a crime. At the C.I.A., it can be a security issue, because it can make an intelligence officer vulnerable to blackmail, but it is not a crime.
So what we have is the FBI looking into an affair that wasn’t a security issue, unless it was, but in no case a crime.
Why, therefore, did this become the FBI’s business? Because, ipso facto, Petraeus was “vulnerable to blackmail.”
Next question: Once it became the FBI’s business on security grounds, why was it buried for months?
Given that Petraeus isn’t accused of revealing secrets, the only security issue was blackmail. And that possibility existed the moment he began the affair and lasted until he was outed.
After the election.
To sum up: If the FBI’s involvement was sparked by security concerns, and Petraeus was allowed to remain in his job for months until the election, someone somewhere cares more about politics than about America’s security. Who?
Let’s rewind 11 years to when the FBI and CIA couldn’t share intelligence related to Mohammed Atta and his 19 fellow 9-11 hijackers on account of that infamous “wall” erected by Clinton’s DOJ appointee Jamie Gorelick.
Today the FBI reacts to some well-connected woman’s complaints about harassing emails by snooping directly on the head spook…then doing nothing with the actionable intel.
It’s going to be a long four years.