The Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday said it is putting off a hearing on the nomination of Gen. John Allen to be NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander after his name popped up in the same investigation that toppled CIA Director David Petraeus.
Early Tuesday Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said he had ordered an investigation into Gen. Allen after the FBI uncovered emails between the general and Jill Kelley, a 37-year-old Florida woman whose complaints led the FBI to begin investigating Mr. Petraeus.
The Senate committee was supposed to hold a hearing Thursday on elevating Gen. Allen from his current position as top commander in Afghanistan to become NATO commander. But after Mr. Panetta’s announcement the committee put Mr. Allen’s nomination on ice.
“Because of the Department of Defense Inspector General’s pending review, the confirmation hearing for General Allen to be Commander of U.S. European Command and NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander has been postponed until a later date. That change of command is expected no earlier than March,” committee Chairman Carl Levin and ranking Republican John McCain said in a statement.
Gen. Allen has reportedly denied that he had an inappropriate relationship with Mrs. Kelley.
Mr. Petraeus, a retired general, resigned on Friday after admitting he had an extramarital affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell.
The affair came to light after Mrs. Kelley complained of anonymous emails warning her to stay away from Mr. Petraeus. The FBI traced the emails to Ms. Broadwell.