Category: Politics / November 13, 2012 10:02 AM EST
The U.S. Department of Defense announced the delay of General John Allen's pending nomination to be commander of United States European Command and Supreme Allied Commander Europe on Tuesday (November 13).
The announcement came after the revelation that Allen, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, is under investigation for alleged inappropriate communication with a woman at the center of the sex scandal involving former CIA Director David Petraeus.
Pentagon spokesman, George Little, said that Allen would remain the commander of ISAF until all the facts were brought to light.
"While this matter is under investigation and before the facts are determined, General Allen will remain commander of ISAF. His leadership has been instrumental in achieving the significant progress that ISAF, working alongside our Afghan partners, has made in bringing greater security to the Afghan people, and ensuring that Afghanistan never again becomes a safe haven for terrorists. General Allen is entitled to due process in this matter," Little told a gathering of reporters on board Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's plane.
The shocking revelation threatens to fell another of the U.S. military's biggest names and suggests that the scandal involving Petraeus - a retired four-star general who had Allen's job in Afghanistan before moving to the CIA last year - could expand much further than previously imagined.
A senior U.S. official said on condition of anonymity that the FBI uncovered between 20,000 and 30,000 pages of communications - mostly emails and spanning from 2010 to 2012 - between Allen and Jill Kelley, who has been identified as a long-time friend of the Petraeus family and a Tampa, Florida, volunteer social liaison with military families at MacDill Air Force Base.
It was Kelley's complaints about harassing emails from the woman with whom Petraeus had had an affair, Paula Broadwell, that prompted an FBI investigation, ultimately alerting authorities to Petraeus' involvement with Broadwell.
Petraeus resigned from his job on Friday (November 9).