Regarding Michael Gerson’s Nov. 12 op-ed column, “An honorable man’s flaw”:

The reason why David Petraeus had to give up his office is not that he did not meet “expectation[s] of personal behavior”; rather, it is that Petraeus made himself subject to the possibility of blackmail while the relationship was secret. It is not difficult to imagine a foreign intelligence service seeking to exploit such information. It is this potential, to be controlled by foreign influences, that constitutes a serious violation of public trust.

John J. Hudak, Columbia