The Cycle | November 12, 2012
>>> broet the story that had us all talking p weekend. david petraeus resigned over an extra-marital affair with his buy grafr, paula broadweliographer, paula broadwell . kelley is shown with petraeus and their spouses. from there the fbi 's investigation uncovered sexually explicit e-mails between broadwell and petraeus . they set up e-mails with fake names. when the fbi questioned petraeus and broadwell , both came clean about the relationship in october. we're told that the president didn't learn about the investigation until last thursday. attorney general eric holder and two house republicans including eric cantor knew weeks before, perhaps more curious, how could the cia , the agency that knows all, not have known about this? let's go to the table. i actually think that the biggest questions are for the fbi . they did not inform the senate intelligence committee , who is supposed to be informed of any fbi investigations that potentially involve national security . they were not informed until friday basically right before all of us found out. so i kind of think the biggest questions here are for the fbi and their handling of the investigation, but really the question on everybody's mind is g mail, really? g mail, head of the cia . all right.
>> i have to get out of the way, at least now that there's sex involved i know we'll be talking about libya, which is great. my main question is, what the hell is wrong with you people? i cannot --
>> you mean me?
>> yes, men. not personally, obviously, but i don't understand why it is always since the beginning of time -- just ask adam and eve . why it is so easy to get a man to completely abandon principles, success, family, reputation? i mean, i don't get it. david petraeus is perhaps one of the most disciplined men in the history of the world based on his background and leads a spy agency, and a chick bats her eyes at him and he throws everything away. it boggles my mind. hitler whose main concern was world domination still found time for a mistress. keep your eye on the ball, guys.
>> i think george clinton , great philosopher answered this question. why must i chase the cat, be like that? nothing but the dog in me. that's who we are.
>> it is so embarrassing.
>> i agree. i agree. men lose kingdoms and fortunes.
>> it's not right.
>> for sex.
>> you become powerful because you're ambitious, but that doesn't mean wanting to dominate the men around you. it means having the spoils.
>> the spoils? already.
>> i saw this documentary about lions. one male lion comes in and takes over the pride and kicks out the sons of the old " lion king " and has sex with all the new women because that's part of the whole thing of being the dominant male . that's what you do.
>> what you know bothered me and now it looks like paula broadwe will sent threatening e-mails, which doesn't look good. the initial instant reaction from people was, oh, how tragic that this great man has been led astray by is this wanton floozie, right?
>> but this hussey.
>> hussey. this is where people want to go with this. he's a victim, poor thing. can't help himself.
>> king herod was a victim too. she wiggled his hips at him and got john the baptist 's head on a platter.
>> it's not fair.
>> women cheat as well. this is not to excuse female behavior, but you guys are so easy. it's amazing.
>> when do you see a powerful woman gain power and lose it on a sex scandal ? when does that happen?
>> when is the last time we had a female senator, congresswoman derailed by a sex scandal ?
>> is it because women are so seldom in power, once they get there they work extra hard to keep it?
>> there's too busy.
>> there's jerngender norms that go along with it, too. women are attracted to power. women don't respond that same way in power.
>> neve so much to lose.
>> i notice steve has been pretty quiet over there.
>> apologize for yourself, steve.
>> look at the scrutiny we're applying to the great failing of david petraeus . look, i get the issue here. if you're a cia director . the agent is sdplised so the agency has to go to that. i understand that. i also say, he's getting more scrutiny over this, over this personal failure, a failure in his personal life than over any decision he's made as a general, any decision he made as the commander in iraq and afghanistan, any action he took as the head of the cia . i think it's -- we have this tendency to just automatically venerate, the four stars and uniform, all the combination. there's been great military leaders in american history and the contributions to the military to the america we know today are invaluable. but i think there's been this suspension of critical thought and critical coverage of david petraeus going back at least half a decade when we decided he was the hero of the iraq surge . we didn't look closely at what happened with the surge. we said we'll take this surge and aappply that to afghanistan. i don't think it worked that well. petraeus himself seemed to recognize this,s why why air strikes are increasing and we start to use drones. the whole idea of the counterinsurgency is the local communities sort of make friends with local communities . now we use drone strikes and alienating all the people. david petraeus just became a symbol of military greatness in this country without anybody looking closely at his record.
>> and his e-mails.
>> wow, what an awful guy. he did this. i'm sure a lousy husband and all that. i wish we had thought a little bit more about some of these actions and the decisions he's make.
>> there's a sense the civilian should trust the brass and follow the top military leadership. i wonder if we feel less comfortable questioning generals and their decision making because so few, such a small percentage of the population actually servesmilitary. it's from a smaller pool. we feel we don't have a right to criticize because we haven't served.
>> now that we know that he's a cad, i feel free to criticize.
>> someone this segues into our next conversation. on this veterans day the issue is defense. admiral joseph stack joins us straight ahead. some people put