America's CIA Director David Petraeus resigned over an extramarital affair.
This brings an abrupt end to a brilliant career that saw him serve as military commander in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
In a message to CIA staff, Mr Petraeus said he showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair.
He added such behavior is unacceptable.
Media reports said the affair came to light as the FBI was investigating whether a computer used by Mr Petraeus had been compromised.
Unnamed officials told the New York Times that Mr Petraeus's lover was Broadwell, a former Army major who spent hours interviewing him for her
She offered no public comment on the revelations.
Michael Morell, Mr Petraeus' deputy at the country's lead spy agency, will serve as acting director and will be appearing at the hearing instead.
President Barack Obama has accepted the resignation of Mr Petraeus.