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Woman In Petraeus Affair Spoke About Having Access To Classified Information

Paula Broadwell, the woman whose extramarital affair with retired Gen. David Petraeus led to his resignation Friday from the post of CIA director, is a major in the Army Reserve who specializes in counterterrorism issues. She's also the author of All In: The Education of General David Petraeus, a biography of the former top U.S. commander in Afghanistan.

As more is learned about what FBI agents found when they began investigating another woman's report about harassing emails, there's word from The New York Times that on Broadwell's computer:

"Agents discovered several classified documents, which raised the additional question of whether Mr. Petraeus had given them to her. She said that he had not. Agents interviewed Mr. Petraeus the following week. He also admitted to the affair but said he had not given any classified documents to her."

So how might she have gotten such information? This summer, Broadwell was part of a media panel at the The Aspen Institute. There's a complete video account of the discussion posted here. And Politico has created a clip from it that shows Broadwell discussing how her position in the Reserve — and her top secret security clearance — meant she did have access to information that others engaged in journalism did not. Some of it came her way while she was in Afghanistan working on the Petraeus biography.

"I was embedded with Gen. Petraeus in Afghanistan and it was a little confusing for some of the folks there because I'm also a military reservist with a top secret/SCI clearance and then some. So, a lot of my former peers didn't know how to treat me. Was I journalist Broadwell or was I Maj. Broadwell?" she recalled. "I had to follow very clear lines of non-disclosure and signed non-disclosure agreements like my colleagues. I felt like I was almost held to a higher level of accountability because I could lose my clearance."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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