How did your extramarital affair begin?

Suddenly he was seen as a security risk: David Petraeus, former four-star general and CIA chief. One of the most celebrated American heroes and globally recognized military strategist. He who turned the trend with the US Army in Iraq and then stopped the Taliban in Afghanistan. Now the brilliant career of the 60-year-old has been abruptly interrupted. Petraeus has submitted his resignation. Not entirely voluntarily, because the FBI came across his extramarital relationship when they checked his email traffic. That reports that Wall Street Journal.

It is not the affair itself, but rather the security risk that seems to be the main reason why the investigating authorities pushed for it and then the White House agreed that Petraeus should step down as head of the CIA. An extramarital relationship, according to the FBI, has an immense impact on the safety assessment of such an exposed person, as it makes them (in the FBI's opinion) susceptible to blackmail. The authorities are concerned not only with the security of official email accounts but also with private ones.

The monitoring of Petraeus' email account is said to have started in the spring of this year, almost nine months after he was promoted to head of the CIA. Like government officials the New York Times announced that the investigation did not initially focus on Petreaus.

In the course of the investigation, however, the FBI agents gained access to the ex-general's Gmail inbox because they believed one of his computers had been compromised. They suspected that a third person had tried to obtain sensitive information. The agents of the federal authorities sensed a threat to national security.

Stunned Washington

You encountered a lot of email traffic with a woman who, according to the WSJ, is Paula Broadwell. She is a graduate of West Point Military Academy and a biographer. She recently published a book on the Commander titled All In: The Education of General David Petraeus. Petraeus was still a general in Afghanistan at the time of the first mail traffic and the relationship was purely platonic. Only much later, when the 60-year-old left the army, the affair is said to have started - and has ended for months.

"Such behavior is unacceptable," said Petraeus nonetheless yesterday. Married to wife Holly for 37 years, he now says, "I showed extremely poor judgment when I got into an extramarital affair." Petraeus' resignation was met with disbelief in Washington.