DAVID PETRAEUS’ gun-toting mistress PAULA BROADWELL was obsessed with the former CIA director – and the FBI feared she could develop a fatal attraction for him that may have driven her to murder, sources tell The ENQUIRER.
During their months-long investigation, federal agents became worried that Broadwell, whose affair with the decorated general led to his resignation on Nov. 9, was a deranged “woman scorned.”
They also believed her extensive military background made her a credible risk to Petraeus, Holly, his wife of 38 years, and Jill Kelley, the family friend who first sounded the alarm after receiving threatening e-mails from Broadwell.
Kelley, 37, a Tampa, Fla.- based State Department liaison to the military’s Joint Special Operations Command, sparked the investigation when she contacted the FBI about hostile e-mails she’d been receiving. The trail led to Broadwell and then to Petraeus – and to steamy e-mail exchanges, including one that talked about the two having “sex under a desk.”
But Broadwell, who often called Petraeus “Peaches” in their e-mails, apparently believed that Kelley had her eye on him.
“Jill was close to David and his wife – they were like grandparents to her young children. But Paula didn’t buy that,” explained one insider. “Paula saw Jill as a love rival – someone who was going to steal Petraeus away from her.
“She was insanely jealous of any woman who was close to David.”
Broadwell, a 40-year-old mother of two, lives in Charlotte, N.C., with her radiologist husband, Scott.
A graduate of West Point and an Army Reserve officer, she spent months embedded in Afghanistan with the former four-star general while working on the book “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.”
One intelligence source called her “a cross between a female James Bond and G.I. Jane.”
Another source said: “During their time in Afghanistan together, Paula developed a fatal attraction for Petraeus. She became extremely possessive, even though they were both married. She didn’t want any other woman to get close to him.
“Paula was infatuated with his power – it was like an aphrodisiac to her.”
After Petraeus retired from the military and took the helm of the CIA,
Broadwell became a frequent visitor to his office in Langley, Va. She often accompanied him on his punishing morning runs around the CIA grounds and attended several public functions as his guest.
He even sent her a photo of himself with actress Angelina Jolie that was snapped while he was in Iraq a few years earlier, saying Broadwell reminded him of her.
When CIA officers expressed concern about Broadwell’s unprecedented access to the director, Petraeus, 60, felt the situation was getting out of hand and cut off the affair.
“That’s when investigators believe Broadwell went a little crazy” and began e-mailing Kelley, said the source.
According to James J. Wedick, a 34-year veteran of the FBI, the e-mails received by Kelley “had to be very graphic and threatening” for the FBI to get involved.
“When they realized they had a potentially dangerous situation, of course they investigated,” said Wedick. “There is no way the FBI could have ignored this.”
And Ray Semko, a former special agent for the Defense Intelligence Agency, told The ENQUIRER: “The FBI would have been very nervous about investigating the head of the CIA but must have felt this woman could harm Gen. Petraeus, Mrs. Petraeus or Mrs. Kelley. They would have felt that they needed to negate the threat.”
Another highly placed intelligence source added: “FBI agents would investigate this as a possible worst-case murder scenario against Petraeus and/or his wife. A jealous woman who felt betrayed after being dumped by Petraeus has to be looked at as a serious threat and someone who might kill.
“A complete investigation was warranted – and the possibility of murder had to be considered.”