Petraeus to Girlfriend: Stop Threatening ‘Social Liaison’

Family Friend Kelley Hires Monica Lewinsky's Crisis Manager

The embarrassing and increasingly convoluted series of events that led the FBI investigation to conclude that threatening anonymous emails were part of a trail that led straight to CIA Director David Petraeus and included his girlfriend Paula Broadwell acquiring considerable classified data, continues to grow.

The whole of the investigation began because Broadwell suspected Petraeus of cheating on her with Jill Kelley, an unpaid “social liaison” for the military who was once given an “honorary ambassador” certificate by CENTCOM and has since gone around referring to herself as an “ambassador” for the United States to allied nations. Kelley informed the FBI when Broadwell started threatening her, and informed Petraeus as well, which led the now-former CIA Director to warn Broadwell to stop the threats.

Mrs. Kelley provided only one brief comment today, saying that she and her husband have “been friends with Mr. Petraeus and his family for over five years.” There’s no indication that the friendship went beyond that, though Broadwell was clearly convinced of this.

The Kelleys hosted Petraeus at a party in 2010 at their mansion. Today, however, that mansion sits empty as the family have fled to an undisclosed location to escape media questions. Mrs. Kelley has also hired two major figures from former President Bill Clinton’s impeachment, the president’s lawyer Abbe Lowell and Monica Lewinsky’s crisis manager Judy Smith.

The move is somewhat bizarre because all indications are that Mrs. Kelley isn’t even suspected of any wrongdoing, and to the extent officials have commented at all on the FBI’s investigation they have said they don’t anticipate charging anyone with anything, let alone the woman whose only apparent role is that of the initial complainant.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.