Petraeus appears to collapse during intense questioning of Senate hearing

Pat McMahon Contributor
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Under intense questioning during a Senate hearing earlier today, the commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East, Gen. David Petraeus, appeared to briefly pass out and had to be escorted from the room.

Arizona Sen. John McCain was asking Petraeus about the “message we are sending in the region” if the United States adheres to what he called an arbitrary timeline for troop withdrawal from Afghanistan.

The mission is “likely to get harder before it [gets] easier,” Petraeus had said during the hearing. He also affirmed that he supports the policy of the administration to begin drawing down troop levels in Afghanistan by July of next year.

Petraeus returned to the hearing room to applause within 25 minutes and indicated that he was able to proceed with further questioning, according to the Washington Post.

But Sen. Carl Levin, who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee, adjourned the hearing until next week.

“It wasn’t Senator [John] McCain’s questions,” Petraeus, a long-distance runner, joked afterwards.”I just got dehydrated.”