In the most recent twist to the scandal that is rocking the highest levels of the U.S. government, the New York Post is reporting that both General Petraeus and General Allen intervened in the custody battle of Jill Kelley’s twin sister, Natalie Khawam.
For those who may have missed a step– or just tuned out of the news for a couple of hours– Jill Kelley is the woman who originally received “threatening” emails from General Petraeus’ reported mistress and biographer Paula Broadwell.
Kelley appears to have a certain talent for arousing strong emotions in people– it has now been reported that General Allen was also involved in “inappropriate communications” with the woman (though Allen denies any wrongdoing), and that she received shirtless photos from the FBI agent who originally launched the probe into Broadwell’s emails.
Now, the question is, why would two top generals get involved in a custody battle on the side of Kelley’s reportedly “unstable” twin sister?
The New York Post posted a story before 3am ET Tuesday morning:
While he was director of the CIA, Petraeus wrote a letter supporting the child-custody fight of the “psychologically unstable” twin sister of his close friend Jill Kelley…sources told The Post.
The four-star general’s letter to the court — written in the past two months — supported a motion to overturn a ruling made nearly a year earlier by a judge who resoundingly denied custody to Kelley’s sister, Natalie Khawam, because of serious reservations about her honesty and mental stability, court records show. [Emphasis added]
At around 10:45 ET the New York Post added far more to the story, including Petraeus’ actual statements, and more background on Khawam:
The father, Grayson Wolfe, was unable to see the child for more than a year, according to court documents. The judge overseeing the case cited Khawam with “outrageous conduct,” “bad faith litigation tactics,” and “illogical thinking,” awarding full custody to the father and socking the mom with $350,000 in legal fees.
“My wife and I have known Natalie for approximately three years, getting to know her while serving in Tampa, Florida, through our friendship with Dr. and Mrs. Scott Kelley,” Petraeus wrote in a letter introduced as part of a legal motion by Natalie Khawam’s lawyer.
“It is clear to me that [child’s name] would benefit from much more time with his Mother and from removal of the burdensome restrictions imposed on her when she does get to spend time with him,” Petraeus wrote.
Petraeus said he had observed Natalie and her son, “including when we hosted them and the Kelley family for Christmas dinner this past year. In each case, we have seen a very loving relationship – a Mother working hard to provide her son enjoyable, educational and developmental experiences,” he wrote. [Emphasis added]
The New York Post has more on Allen’s involvement in the case:
A separate letter from Allen is dated Sept. 22, two days after the Petraeus letter. “Natalie clearly loves [child’s name] and cherishes each and every opportunity she has to spend time with him. She is a dedicated mother,” Allen wrote. “In light of Natalie’s maturity, integrity and steadfast commitment to raising her child, I humbly request your reconsideration of the existing mandated custody settlement,” Allen wrote. He said he got to observe the mother and child “at command social functions.”
He signed his letter: “Gen. John R. Allen, General, United States Marine Corps,” on what appears to be official letterhead.
Allen’s letter does not mention any romantic relationship between himself and Kelley. [Emphasis added]
It is, of course, possible that the judge grievously miscategorized Kelley’s sister, and the generals were simply attempting to see the mother reunited with her child. However, the judge’s extreme actions indicate that there was likely something amiss with the mother– it is highly unusual for a father to receive full custody and a judge to cite the mother with “outrageous conduct” by mistake.
Twitchy captured a number of sarcastic comments on the most recent turn in what is rapidly beginning to appear more like a soap opera than the upper echelons of the U.S. government, one commenter writing “Next week on Days of Our Lives…” before a related article.
“Can’t believe this thing has an evil twin sister now. We’re hours away from learning Petraeus is Gen. Allen’s real father,” another added.
The fact that the situation is becoming so convoluted is, of course, troubling for those whose primary concern is what happened to the four dead Americans in Benghazi, and what information then-CIA Director General Petraeus can provide.