Politics
              FILE - This Feb. 2, 2012 file photo shows CIA Director David Petraeus testifying on Capitol Hill in Washington. When Defense Secretary Leon Panetta pointedly warned young troops last spring to mind their ways, he may have been lecturing the wrong audience. The culture of military misconduct starts at the top. At least five current and former U.S. general officers have been reprimanded or investigated for possible misconduct in the past two weeks _ a startling run of embarrassment for a military whose stock among Americans rose so high during a decade of war that its leaders seemed almost untouchable.  (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)

Judge Napolitano on FBI: ‘If they can do this to David Petraeus, they can do this to anybody’

Photo of Matthew Boyle
Matthew Boyle
Investigative Reporter

“They probably don’t plan any prosecutions,” he added. “This is being leaked by people who want to destroy Petraeus, and the leaks are a violation — not of federal criminal law, because there is no criminal investigation — the leaks are a violation of FBI regulations and Justice Department regulations. The leaks are enough to get FBI agents fired – or whoever is doing the leaking, but not to get them prosecuted. The only way the leaker could be prosecuted is if this information was part of an ongoing criminal investigation to be presented before a grand jury. If that is leaked, that violated federal criminal law.”

Since no criminal charges have been filed, and since none are expected to be filed, the information the FBI obtained should legally never have been allowed to see the light of day.

“Whoever is doing the leaking wants to smear Petraeus, because they don’t want him to confront the mountain of evidence that exists which would contradict the testimony he gave on Sept. 14,” Napolitano said. “Sept. 14 is three days after Benghazi and two days before [U.N. Ambassador] Susan Rice’s infamous interviews. Petraeus probably said what the political hacks in the White House told him to say. Sept. 14 is also the height of the presidential campaign. So, the world is very different now.” (RELATED VIDEO: Obama’s defense of Susan Rice on Wednesday was his ‘usual show’ of indignation, Krauthammer says)

“The entity that wants to affect the outcome here [in the Benghazi scandal], the White House, does not want Petraeus confronted with the mountain of evidence that would contradict what he said on Sept. 14,” Napolitano added. “So, the only way they can prevent that confrontation is to destroy him.”

That alleged plan didn’t fully work, though. Petraeus has since agreed to testify before congressional intelligence committees about the scandal.

On Wednesday morning, the Senate intelligence committee chairwoman, California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, announced Petraeus’ decision to come forward and testify before her committee on Benghazi. “Mr. Petraeus has indicated his willingness [to testify],” Feinstein said. “He is eager to come before the committee so we will work out the details.”

Feinstein said she was as shocked as anybody when news of the Petraeus scandal broke, because the law enforcement authorities conducting the investigation failed to inform congressional intelligence committee leaders about what was going on. She said the news felt like getting struck by a “lightning bolt.”