Jun 7, 2012 1 Comment ›› Douglas Stewart
President Obama’s nominee for Ambassador to Iraq, Brett McGurk, has had an affair with Wall Street Journal reporter Gina Chon, newly released emails reveal.
While on post in Iraq in 2008 the two seemed to go beyond a strictly professional relationship and “hooking up” for the first time on June 23 of 2008. The emails include crude sexual references to “blue balls” in a strange mixture of official business equally mixed with innuendo. From the earliest released correspondence the flirtations between the two were easily identifiable; no reading between the lines were necessary. The two were entirely candid in their communications in regards to the details of their activities. McGurk even says he performed a “self exercise” (referring to masturbation) to take care of the affliction of the blue balls caused by Chon.
Today McGurk “sailed” through the hearing today on his ambassadorship nomination with GOP opposition “failing to materialize” as reported by The Hill. How the emails detailing McGurk’s unprofessional relationship with a journalist failed to become part of the vetting process is still not clear. It is entirely possible that the Senate committee was not aware of the emails that were released earlier this week. If approved as the Ambassador to Iraq McGurk will be in charge of running the largest embassy on earth.
The question for the Senate committee now should be if McGurk can be trusted in the role as Ambassador in Iraq. Due to his personal, and sexual affair, with a journalist stationed in his area, it is unclear if he has in the past shared confidential information with Chon or the Wall Street Journal. The emails show, jokingly, McGurk and Chon engaging in “cover your ass” tactics.
In the last string of correspondences McGurk confirms the email he was sending was intended for Chon saying “Yeah–that was to you; covering tracks!” The light-heartedness of the emails are probably directly related to the fact that neither one thought that their emails would ever be made public. Now that they are published new concerns arise as to McGurk’s competency in handling the new and demanding role. Before approval the Senate needs to conduct a full investigation into McGurk and Chon. And it needs to start with the subpoena of all their communications and not just the few emails that have recently been released.