Updated at 1:25 pm EST
What’s in a title?
For Jill Kelley, the Tampa socialite who embraced the world of the top brass at U.S. Central Command, it’s not only a license plate.
It’s also “inviolability.”
Kelley, whose e-mails complaining of harassment led to an FBI investigation that led to exposure of an extramarital affair that retired Army Gen. David Petraeus was having with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, which led to Petraeus’ resignation as CIA director and also to a Pentagon inspector general’s inquiry into prolific e-mails between Kelley and Marine Gen. John Allen, has called on 911 to clear her bay-shore sidewalks of the media seeking comment. (See the Bloomberg.com profile by Michael C. Bender and Phil Mattingly on Kelley.)
“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,” Kelley told a 911 dispatcher in Tampa. “I don’t know if you want to get diplomatic protection involved as well.”
Foreign Policy reports that the 37-year-old Kelley is an “honorary consul” to South Korea – a title described as symbolic, with no official responsibilities, yet stamped on the specialty license plate of her Mercedes S500.
“She does not work as a real consul,” Foreign Policy quotes a diplomatic official as saying. “They play a role to improve the relationship between the ROK and the U.S. Jill Kelley helped to get support for [the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement] and she arranged meetings between the ROK Ambassador to Washington and local businessmen when the ROK Ambassador visited the Tampa area.”
Foreign Policy notes: “In fact,`honorary’ diplomats have no specific privileges or protections under the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and therefore her property is not actually ”inviolable” as a matter of international law.”
ABC News also reports this this afternoon: Kelley has lost the privilege of visiting MacDill Air Force Base, home of CentCom and the U.S. Special Operations Command, without an escort. ABC News reports hat Kelley participated in a base program known as “Friends of MacDill,” its members granted cards allowing them to clear security when entering the base.
Both Petraeus, who led the Tampa-based CentCom before running the war in Afghanistan, and Allen, who served as deputy there before running the war in Afghanistan and continues in command there have served with actual titles: Four-star general.