Jill Kelley's seemingly endless charms got her into the White House three times this fall. Kelley had met a "mid-level White House staffer" while the staffer was visiting the MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, and this staffer took her on a tour of the White House and ate breakfast with her twice in the staff dining hall. Her charms are nonpartisan -- despite attending Republican fundraisers and the Republican National Convention, she emailed the Democratic mayor of Tampa to say, "I was at the WH with my friends in the Administration this weekend – the stress was surreal! But glad POTUS has been reelected!" President Obama was on the campaign trail the days Kelley visited.
It is yet another data point in the expanding file of Things the Kelleys Get to Do That You Don't, a subplot in the Love Pentagon scandal that cost CIA director David Petraeus his career and put Gen. John Allen's nomination to be NATO supreme allied commander on hold. All this information coming out over the past week about the Kelleys indicates one thing: the Kelleys are pretty special people. How special? Jill Kelley, in particular, is somehow able to amass an insane level of access and power despite possessing no job or discernible talents other than throwing good parties. The lesson of the Love Pentagon, then, might be twofold: Don't have an affair over Gmail and throwing the best effing parties in town will you get you everywhere. Here's what parties have done for Jill Kelley -- both the shocking and the banal.
If you're a Kelley, you can…
Appoint yourself to a wide variety of fake diplomatic positions. Kelley was named "honorary ambassador" by CENTCOM. She was a "self-appointed" go-between for CENTCOM officers and Middle Eastern officials, The Washington Post reported. Kelley was one of the first "Friends of MacDill," a symbolic title that got her a pass on base even though she's not in the military or a military family member. Kelley used her military connections to get herself the title of "honorary consul" for South Korea by befriending former Korean Ambassador to the U.S. Han Duk-soo, the Christian Science Monitor reports. Kelley "made an indelible impression on Mr. Han before he returned to Seoul early this year to become president of the powerful Korea International Trade Association." She has vanity plates to tout this title, though it comes with no official duties or responsibilities.
Use those fake diplomatic positions to attempt to extract an $80 million cut of a business deal. At the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Kelley was introduced to New York energy entrepreneur Adam Victor as "a very close friend of Gen. Petraeus," the Los Angeles Times reports. Victor eventually flew Kelley to Hawaii to discuss a coal project with South Korean executives. But then Kelley asked for 2 percent cut of the gross cost of the project -- which would have been $80 million. "It was such an astronomical figure that it suggested she had no experience in negotiating these types of deals," Victor told the Times. "Gen. Petraeus had a lapse in judgment in using his influence to put her in that position."
Use your diplomatic cred to stop Bubba The Love Sponge from 'deep fat frying' a Koran. Kelley emailed Tampa mayor Bob Buckhorn to stop a radio DJ from burning the Muslim holy book, a mission she claimed she was sent on by Petraeus himself. When the mayor's office said they were working on it, Kelley responded, "OK keep me in the loop... Gen Allen will be calling me from Afghanistan at 1 p.m on this-and our next step." It is very difficult to imagine this phone call, but you should try it, it's well worth the effort.
Skydive with commandos. Kelley went skydiving with Para Commandos on October 29, 2010, USA Today reports.
Use your fake diplomatic credentials to yell at people to get off your lawn. Kelley called 911 this week and told the dispatcher: "You know, I don't know if by any chance, because I'm an honorary consul general, so I have inviolability, so they should not be able to cross my property. I don't know if you want to get diplomatic protection involved as well."
Email the mayor to imply the town owes you. Kelley send several anguished early-morning emails to Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the Tampa Bay Times reports. "Dear Mayor Bob," Kelley wrote of the chaos around her house, "to put insult to injury, your police dept gave the local 911 tapes to the press!" Does the town not remember all that she's done for it? "I'm scared and cannot believe what my city — in which I have contributed so much of my love, time, money and leadership, has now done to me and my innocent family."
Make a cancer charity that doesn't seem to do anything about cancer. in 2007, Kelley and her husband created the Doctor Kelley Cancer Foundation, which its tax forms said "shall be operated exclusively to conduct cancer research and to grant wishes to terminally ill adult cancer patients." The charity raised$157,284, and spent half of it on entertaining, meals, cars, phones, and office supplies, the Huffington Post reports. It was bankrupt by the end of 2007.
Get your travel tips from a four-star general. You and I, we might consult Lonely Planet. But among Kelley's 20,000 to 30,000 pages of emails to Gen. Allen were him answering her questions to "facilitate her travel to events abroad by invitation of the Afghan government."
Get the head of the CIA and a four-star general to testify to the good character of your sister, whose character a judge has judged not so good. Allen and Petraeus wrote letters to a judge in the child custody case of Kelley's sister, Natalie Khawam, attesting to her great mothering skills. Nevertheless, the judge awarded full custody to the father.
Count throwing fancy parties as "supporting the troops," and people won't laugh in your face. "Scott Kelley told grateful guests at various parties that he and his wife felt an obligation to share their good fortune by showing support for the military," The Washington Post reports.
Spark an FBI investigation into emails few cops would take seriously.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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