General David Petraeus Falls Ill At Senate Armed Services Committee Hearing

Gen. Petraeus Testifies At Senate Hearing On Situation In Afghanistan

Gen. David Petraeus, the head of U.S. Central Command, is escorted out of a hearing room in the Dirksen Senate Office Building, after he fell ill.   Alex Wong/Getty Images North America hide caption

toggle caption Alex Wong/Getty Images North America

During a United States Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the status of the war in Afghanistan, Gen. David Petraeus, the head of U.S. Central Command, fell ill.

According to NPR's David Welna, Petraeus slumped onto the witness table, next to Michele Flournoy, the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, with whom he was scheduled to testify.

"Petraeus was listening to Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) express concern about the direction of the U.S war effort in Afghanistan when he appeared to faint," The Washington Post reports.

Minutes ago, Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI), the chairman of the committee, said that the general "appears to be doing very well," and that he is drinking water.

With help, Petraeus was able to walk out of the hearing room in the Dirksen Senate Office Building.

"We will decide whether or not to proceed in a few minutes," Levin said.

UPDATE at 10:50 a.m. ET: Petraeus returned to the witness table, carrying a cup.

UPDATE at 10:52 a.m. ET: Levin has said the committee "would feel better" if the hearing could be rescheduled for tomorrow morning.  It has been.

UPDATE at 10:53 a.m. ET: Petraeus has left the hearing room, to applause.

UPDATE at 12:20 p.m. ET: To see a C-SPAN video of Petraeus slumping onto the witness table, click here.



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