The story behind the resignation of CIA director David Petraeus is one of the more bizarre episodes in the Obama administration. The inclination of the general’s admirers on the right and of Obama supporters on the left will be to shove the entire sordid mess under the rug. But a series of important questions need to be answered. Squeamishness over a tawdry personal scandal should not obscure some serious issues.
The mainstream media, freed for its obligation to block and tackle for the president in the election, can redeem its dreadfully inadequate coverage of the Benghazi debacle by swiftly getting to the bottom of this.
Here are a few of the questions about the Petraeus resignation:
* Why did the FBI launch an all-out dragnet over e-mails from Paula Broadwell to Jill Kelly?
* Why did it take months for the FBI to realize this was about an affair, not corruption?
* Why was the White House and/or congressional members charged with national-security oversight not alerted before the election?
* Who else other than the FBI was aware that the CIA chief was under investigation?
* Why did Petraeus, when briefing Congress on Sept. 14, purportedly push the bogus cover story on Benghazi (i.e., it was about a spontaneous demonstration over the anti-Muslim video) when his agency had information within two hours that it was a terrorist attack?
* Why is Petraeus excused from testifying further about Benghazi?
* Why did Director of National Intelligence James Clapper urge Petraeus to resign?
* Was Petraeus involved in drafting the CIA talking points and/or in preparing U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice for her TV appearances on Sept. 16, during which she pushed the false notion that the Benghazi attack was over the anti-Muslim video?
* Why did Petraeus remain silent when politicians who perpetuated the false narrative for weeks blamed the intelligence community?
* Who is going to investigate Clapper, Petraeus, FBI chief Robert Mueller, Attorney General Eric Holder and possible White House involvement? Absent an agreement to waive executive and national security privileges for a congressional investigation, isn’t an independent prosecutor of some type needed?