By Emily Senger - Wednesday, January 23, 2013 - 0 Comments
Jill Kelley, the woman whose complaint about threatening emails inadvertently revealed an affair that…
Jill Kelley, the woman whose complaint about threatening emails inadvertently revealed an affair that forced former CIA director David Petraeus to resign, is continuing a media blitz in an attempt to clear her name after the bizarre November scandal that put her into the spotlight.
“Ours is a story of how the simple act of quietly appealing to legal authorities for advice on how to stop anonymous, harassing e-mails can result in a victim being re-victimized,” the Kelleys write. Continue…
By Emily Senger - Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 9:57 AM - 0 Comments
Jill Kelley, the Florida socialite who inadvertently exposed an affair between former CIA director…
Jill Kelley, the Florida socialite who inadvertently exposed an affair between former CIA director David Petraeus and his biographer, has finally broken her silence in an interview with The Daily Beast.
Nearly three months after Petraeus stepped down, Kelley, 37, spoke to Washington bureau chief Howard Kurtz, calling the situation “very sad” and saying that the media spotlight has been tough on her family, which includes three young children.
However, Kelley gave few details on the contents of the emails that put her in the public spotlight in the first place. Of those emails, Kelley tells Kurtz that they didn’t tell her to stay away from Petraeus, as has been reported. Instead, she describes the emails as containing: “blackmail, extortion, threats.” Continue…
By Emily Senger - Wednesday, November 21, 2012 at 8:57 AM - 0 Comments
Natalie Khawam defends sisters’ reputation in statement
High-profile celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred is the latest character to appear in the David Petraeus affair.
The lawyer, who The Atlantic Wire once described as “the ambulance chaser of ‘feminism’,” stood beside Natalie Khawam Tuesday as the new counsel for the twin sister of Florida socialite Jill Kelley — for those who haven’t been following along closely, that’s the woman whose emails eventually showed that former CIA director David Petraeus had an affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, which forced him to resign.
At the press conference in Washington Tuesday, Allred told reporters that she was going to “correct some misconceptions” about her client.
Khawam then read a statement meant to defend the reputation of her sister, who she lived with while she was going through a divorce with her now ex-husband Grayson Wolfe. “My sister Jill and I aren’t just twins, we’re best friends. We’re literally inseparable,” Khawam said, her voice breaking. “During my darkest times, Jill held the light for me. She and my brother-in-law, Dr. Kelley, took me in with my son when we needed refuge and protection.”
Neither of the women, however, addressed the real question of why both Petraeus and his wife, Holly Petraeus, wrote letters of support for Khawam while she was going through a custody battle for her son. She eventually lost that case and custody was awarded to her ex-husband.
Here’s the statement from Khawam:
Allred, for her part, is an interesting choice, had Khawam wanted to stay out of the public eye.
Allred gained notoriety after a series of high-profile cases, including representing Amber Frey, who testified against her former lover Scott Peterson in the trial where he was convicted of murdering his wife and unborn child. She has also represented a girl who was not allowed to join the Boy Scouts, Nicole Brown Simpson’s family during the O.J. Simpson murder trial and former soap star Hunter Tylo, who was fired after becoming pregnant.
More recently, she represented Canadian Miss Universe hopeful Jenna Talackova, who was nearly excluded from the competition after it was revealed that she was born male and had undergone sexual reassignment surgery.
By Anne Kingston - Friday, November 16, 2012 at 6:37 PM - 0 Comments
Closed-door hearings, Orwellian surveillance and lessons learned
David Petreaus hit the Hill Friday, testifying before House and Senate closed-door hearings. The former CIA director called the Sept. 11 attack on Benghazi an act of terrorism by al-Quaeda militants, in contrast to what he told the committee on Sept. 14 and testimony given by Susan Rice, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. His extramarital affair was off the table.
U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder defended the Justice Department’s handling of the FBI investigation, including keeping the White House in the dark until after the election. Meanwhile, the CIA opened an internal investigation into Petraeus’s conduct during his 14-month tenure.
And, surprise, surprise: more dirt is emerging on financially beleaguered “socialite and honorary counsel to South Korea,” Jill Kelley, and her twin sister. The Los Angeles Times reports that after helping a New York City “energy entrepreneur” make introductions for a multibillion-dollar coal project South Korea, Kelley unsuccessfully angled for an $80-million commission. In another report, her twin sister, Natalie Khawam, is said to be unable to pay back a $300,000 loan from a former boyfriend who is a defense department lobbyist.
Meanwhile, we’re learning more about how Paula Broadwell benefitted from her high-profile proximity to the former four-star general–including a speaking slot at the Aspen Ideas Festival, an invitation to Washington’s annual OSS Society dinner, and a role as an “expert commentator” in an infomercial for machine-gun manufacturer KRISS, which shows her to be a crack shot. The company was angling for a military contract at the time.
In the “what-lessons-can-be-learned-here” category, attention is turning to Orwellian government surveillance. In a post laden with advice for would-be adulterers, Salon.com analyses how the head of the world’s largest spying organization and his lover screwed up trying to cover the tracks of their affair. And in a thoughtful post on Reuters.com , Julian Sanchez writes: “The Petraeus affair has, for a moment, exposed that invisible scaffolding – and provided a rare opportunity to revisit outdated laws and reconsider the expanded surveillance powers doled out over the past panicked decade.”
In fluffier fallout, there’s this Petraeus-scandal-inspired parody ”Real Housewives of the Pentagon” which proves again that “reality TV” pales next to “reality reality.”
By Emily Senger - Friday, November 16, 2012 at 9:03 AM - 0 Comments
Picture from Petraeus affair found by newspaper
The photo of shirtless FBI agent Frederick W. Humphries II, who initiated the investigation into a series of emails that eventually forced CIA director David Petraeus to resign last week, has emerged, and it turns out that it was a joke, as those close to Humphries had said all along.
The photo in question was discovered as agents looked into the email account belonging to Jill Kelley, a Florida socialite who volunteered for the military and had received anonymous harassing emails telling her to stay away from Petraeus. The emails turned out to be from Paula Broadwell, Petraeus’ biographer who he was having an affair with.
On Wednesday, the shirtless man was identified as Humphries, but no one had seen the photo. Or so it seemed, until the Seattle Times realized it had the photo all along. It was given to a reporter at the paper in 2010 and “was taken following a ‘hard workout’ with the SWAT team at MacDill Air Force Base,” writes Seattle Times reporter Mike Carter.
The photo shows a bald-headed, smiling and shirtless Humphries posing with two bald-headed and shirtless target-practice dolls, which he closely resembles. When the photo was sent to the paper, the caption under it read: “Which One’s Fred?”
The photo evidence seems to confirm that it is a joke and is not sexual in any way, something Lawrence Berger, the general counsel for the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, said previously.
By Anne Kingston - Thursday, November 15, 2012 at 7:53 PM - 0 Comments
A backless dress, a shirtless FBI and all the latest on the scandal
The Benghazi hearing began, and a day before David Petraeus is set to testify he started to get his side of the story out through sympathetic media channels. It offered a telling glimpse of the former top four-star general’s talent annexing the press corps.
- Day 6: Things are getting stranger
- It’s like Mean Girls for people with jobs
- Petraeus and the Shlock Doctrine
First, National Journal reported Petraeus told his former spokesman, retired Army Col. Steven Boylan, that Broadwell is the only mistress he ever had and that began in November 2011 — two months after he became CIA chief.
By Emily Senger - Thursday, November 15, 2012 at 8:36 AM - 0 Comments
The formerly anonymous shirtless FBI agent who prompted the investigation into harassing emails sent…
The formerly anonymous shirtless FBI agent who prompted the investigation into harassing emails sent to Florida socialite Jill Kelley, which eventually shed light on former CIA director David Petraeus’ affair with his biographer Paula Broadwell, now has a name.
That name is Frederick W. Humphries II, according to an investigation from The New York Times.
According to the report, Humphries, 47, was a friend of Kelley and her husband and is, by all accounts, a top-performing agent with expertise in counter-terrorism. He took the initial complaint from Kelley about harassing emails she had received and later pushed the investigation forward when it appeared to be stalled. The investigation showed that the emails were from Broadwell, who had been having an extramarital affair with CIA director and retired general Petraeus. He resigned on Friday.
According to Lawrence Berger, the general counsel for the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, Humphries was a “social friend” with both Kelley and her husband and the shirtless photos of Humphries found during the course of the investigation were sent in jest, and not sexual in manner.
“That picture was sent years before Ms. Kelley contacted him about this, and it was sent as part of a larger context of what I would call social relations in which the families would exchange numerous photos of each other,” Berger told The New York Times.
By Anne Kingston - Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 6:44 PM - 0 Comments
Petraeus will testify and Jill Kelley is ‘an honorary consul of the Republic of Korea’
Petraeus will testify before Congress about Sept. 11 attacks on U.S. installments in Benghazi that killed a U.S. ambassador and three other Americans. Timing has not been decided.
At today’s White House press conference, President Obama said he has “no evidence” that national security was compromised by the scandal. The president said he accepted Petraeus’s resignation Friday because “he did not meet the standards that he felt were necessary” to be CIA director. When Obama was asked if he should have been informed before last Thursday that the FBI knew of Petraeus’s extramarital affair, he said the FBI and Justice Department have protocols about disclosing ongoing investigations: “We’re not supposed to meddle in criminal investigations.” Obama said he was “withholding judgment” on how the FBI handled the case, as he delivered a oblique jab with the word “generally,” saying:”I have a lot of confidence, generally, in the FBI.”
The Shirtless FBI Agent has been revealed: pics were “a joke,” says Frederick W. Humphries II.
By Emma Teitel - Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 12:20 PM - 0 Comments
And not so much about the personal indiscretions of public figures
You know when scandals erupt in the media about teens “sexting,” cyberbullying, and sharing lewd photos on the Internet, and everybody asks, “Where are the parents?” Well, now we know the answer: they’re doing the exact same thing. Enter the David Petraeus affair, or Call of Booty, as video-game enthusiasts have labelled it: the most complicated military drama of all time, a soap opera on steroids, harder to parse than seasons four and five of Desperate Housewives combined. The FBI is currently compiling a timeline of their probe that revealed the beleaguered American spy boss’s extramarital affair; one they’ve probably had to update on the hour. (As you’re reading this, I’m sure new news will have already broken, this time involving Petraeus’s dog, or maybe a love child.) However, allow me to give you a brief rundown of the story, as it stands while I write this:
Beloved military leader and, until very recently, director of America’s Central Intelligence Agency, David Petraeus, resigned last Friday after he admitted to having an affair, reportedly with his biographer: 40-year-old married mother of two, Paula Broadwell. The FBI began its investigation of Broadwell in June, when Tampa Bay socialite Jill Kelley reported that she was receiving anonymous emails from an apparently jealous woman. The FBI allegedly traced the emails to Broadwell. Her online activity revealed that she was having an affair with Petraeus (it appears the two shared a Gmail account and conversed through unsent email drafts—a common practice among terrorists and teenagers alike.)
By Emily Senger - Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 10:27 AM - 0 Comments
The media firestorm surrounding CIA director David Petraeus’ affair with biographer Paula Broadwell and…
The media firestorm surrounding CIA director David Petraeus’ affair with biographer Paula Broadwell and subsequent resignation got more fuel late Tuesday when reports emerged saying Jill Kelley — the Florida socialite who was on the receiving end of nasty emails from Broadwell — ran a questionable cancer charity with her doctor husband Scott Kelley.
According to a report from the Huffington Post, The Doctor Kelley Cancer Foundation had the stated mandate of conducting research and providing terminally ill adult cancer patients will a final wish. Instead, The Huffington Post reports, the charity went bankrupt in 2007, and records show that it spent tens of thousands on meals and entertainment, travel, and office expenses and supplies.
The latest revelation comes amid reports that Kelley is not a huge fan of the media camped outside of her Tampa home. USA Today reports that Kelley has called authorities multiple times about trespassers over the last few days and, in one call, requested “diplomatic protection.”
According to a report from Foreign Policy Kelley is an “honorary consul” of South Korea, a purely symbolic position with no official responsibilities.
By Anne Kingston - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 at 10:28 PM - 0 Comments
Is this a sex scandal, a security scandal, a new hybrid or none of the above? Anne Kingston explains.
We’re now into day five of the constantly unraveling, can’t-look-away-from, still-too-early-to-properly-identify-what-it-is mess triggered by CIA director David Petraeus’s surprise resignation on Friday, which arrived just in time to more than fill the post-election news vacuum. Yesterday brought a “shirtless FBI agent” and a ”psychologically unstable” twin, And new reports accuse Petraeus’s replacement in Afghanistan, Gen. John Allen, of sending between 20,000 and 30,000 pages of “potentially inappropriate” emails to another women enmeshed in the case.
And the questions are piling up: Why exactly did Petraeus resign? Did the U.S.’s top spy really think sex-mailing in the draft folder of an unprotected Gmail account wouldn’t be untraceable? What does an “unpaid social liaison” do? Did Petraeus break martial law? What does this all have to do, if anything, with Benghazi? And. most perplexingly: Why is Chuck Klosterman writing the New York Times‘ Ethicist column?
By Nick Taylor-Vaisey - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 at 8:37 AM - 0 Comments
Just when we thought we had our news back, and Americans would no longer dominate, along stumbles a formerly heroic military man named David Petraeus who decided to have an affair, ruin his career, and set off a series of unfortunate events that culminated in, well, his resignation—but who knows where this story ends? Canada, we just can’t ignore a sexy, gross, bombshell of a scandal, can we? Even if we have to play voyeur and look south of the border, seems like we’ll do what it takes. I’ll bet most of us are even more entranced when we start mixing up characters and timelines in this comically salacious saga. After all, it’s a perfect storm that involves an FBI agent, the disgraced CIA director, his biographer, a personal friend, and who knows who else? It’s like some perverted military edition of Clue, with elements of Guess Who? thrown in for comic relief. I’d advise everyone to look away, but I have an hour’s worth of stories about the whole mess I still need to finish reading. So, carry on. Just don’t forget to, you know, take a break and read about other things happening in the world.
What’s above the fold this morning?
The Globe and Mail leads with what the surge in oil production in the American Midwest means for Canada. The National Post fronts the latest developments in the resignation saga of David Petraeus. The Toronto Star goes above the fold with Toronto Mayor Rob Ford’s latest legal battle, a libel case against a café owner. The Ottawa Citizen leads with accusations that civilians in war zones are treated as second-class beside troops. iPolitics fronts a Bloomberg editorial that asks a lot of questions about Petraeus’ judgment and what comes next. National Newswatch showcases a Toronto Sun story claiming resurgent Liberal poll numbers come at the NDP’s expense.
Stories that will be (mostly) missed
1. Drug sentences. Public prosecutors are bracing for an increase in longer trials as mandatory minimum sentences are introduced in court. They say it’ll put pressure on the court system. 2. Charbonneau. A former manager at Montreal’s city hall who took plenty of gifts from construction industry bosses says that there was never a time those gifts influenced his decision-making. 3. OxyContin. A spike in OxyContin use in Windsor, Ont., is proof of widespread illicit use, researchers say. They don’t want the feds to approve a generic version of OxyContin in Canada. 4. Torture. Federal Justice Minister Rob Nicholson knew he would be grilled about torture by a UN committee earlier this year, according to a letter he penned that media outlets acquired.
By Emily Senger - Monday, November 12, 2012 at 1:16 PM - 0 Comments
Paula Broadwell’s ‘All In’ gets unintentional publicity
General David Petraeus’ high-profile resignation as CIA director after an affair with his married biographer Paula Broadwell has the unintended consequence of giving the biography a bump in sales.
In the wake of 60-year-old Petraeus’ resignation on Friday, Broadwell’s biography, All In: The Education of General David Petraeus, has moved up significantly on the Amazon top sellers list, making it to No. 159 by Monday afternoon and No. 3 most popular when it comes to books about Iraq.
It’s a long jump up, writes The New York Post: “before the scandal broke, it was ranked a mere 76,792.”
The jump in sales comes as more information emerges about a second woman, Jill Kelley, 37, who was involved in the general’s downfall. According to a report from The Associated Press Kelley, who is a volunteer social liaison at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, had received anonymous emails accusing her of being overly flirtatious with Petraeus. The New York Times reports that an F.B.I. investigation into those emails lead to Broadwell, and that her relationship with Petraeus was later discovered.
Broadwell, 40, has two young children and is a Reserve Army officer.
Petraeus has been married for 38 years to Holly Petraeus and the couple has two adult children.