Gen. Allen cleared in misconduct inquiry
KABUL (PAN): The top US and NATO forces’ commander in Afghanistan has been cleared of allegations of professional misconduct over email exchanges with a Florida socialite, media reports said on Wednesday.
Gen. John R. Allen, Pentagon officials said, had committed no wrongdoing after an investigation into whether he traded inappropriate e-mails with a woman involved in the scandal that led David H. Petraeus to resign as CIA director.
During its investigation of Petraeus, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) found messages from Allen. Senior officials then called the tone and tenor of the emails racy and flirtatious, something that prompted Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to order a formal inquiry.
According to the Washington Post, the Pentagon inspector general wrote a letter to Allen on Friday, saying that the ISAF commander had not violated military prohibitions. “He was completely exonerated,” the newspaper quoted an unnamed official as saying.
Pentagon spokesman George Little, meanwhile, confirmed the defense secretary had been informed regarding the general’s clearance. “The secretary has complete confidence in the continued leadership of Gen. Allen, who is serving with distinction in Afghanistan,” Little said.
President Barack Obama put on hold Gen. Allen’s nomination as the next US commander of NATO forces in Europe when the inquiry was announced in mid-November.
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