New York, NY — Rebecca Sinclair, wife of Brig. Gen. Jeffery Sinclair, is standing by her husband as he faces a string of sexual misconduct charges involving female officers.
In defending her husband, Sinclair said she is trying to make sense of the taboo subjects that often plague military marriages: the strain of separation, adultery, and the stress of war.
“I am not condoning anything, and I’m not excusing my husband’s infidelity. I’m not saying that just because we’re on this deployment cycle and because of the war, that causes infidelity,” Sinclair told The Washington Post Monday. “I’m just trying to understand it, and I’m trying to get conversations started so that people can look behind and see the bigger issue.”
Sinclair’s thoughts will appear in an opinion piece in Thursday’s WashingtonPost. The piece comes at a time that Gen. David Petraeus resigned as CIA director over an affair with his biographer, and when Gen. John Allen, the top US commander in Afghanistan, is accused of exchanging suggestive emails with Tampa socialite Jill Kelley.
Sinclair’s piece also comes at a time when her husband is waiting to hear whether he will be court-martialed on charges including forcible sodomy, wrongful sexual conduct, possessing pornography and alcohol while deployed, and misusing a government travel charge card.
At a recent evidentiary hearing, a female captain testified that she had a three-year affair with the 27-year Army veteran. She said Jeffrey Sinclair forced her to perform oral sex on two occasions. The captain also testified that the general threatened to kill her and her family if she told anyone about the relationship.
Defense lawyers are portraying the general’s accuser as a lying, jealous lover who was trying to ruin Sinclair’s career and family life. In her closing argument, Maj. Elizabeth Ramsey suggested that Jeffrey Sinclair was only guilty of fraternization and adultery. The two are punishable by a written reprimand.
The defense also said Sinclair passed a polygraph test during which he denied assaulting the captain.
Rebecca Sinclair said her husband of 27 years called her last spring to tell her about the affair and allegations, and said she hoped “the Army will see the evidence for what it is and will clear him of any wrongdoing.” Sinclair and her husband are trying to repair the marriage, and she said she is using her personal story as a way to shine a light on the pressures of being in a military marriage.
Rebecca Sinclair also said many military wives know their husbands are being unfaithful, but keep quiet in order to preserve their families or their financial security.
Sinclair said her husband’s affair was very painful and very hurtful.
“I just really feel that this is something I need to talk about,” she said. “Because it’s not an isolated case.”