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Barbara Walters’ 10 Most Fascinating People of 2012 special aired last night, and the #1 most fascinating of the electic mix of individuals was revealed at last:

David Petraeus!

The special highlighted the achievements and antics of those that kept us enthralled for the past 12 months, from Ben Affleck to Gabby Douglas to Honey Boo Boo.

But it was Petraeus, the decorated U.S. military hero now disgraced by an affair that forced his resignation as director of the CIA, who took the top prize.


“He is, without question, one of the finest officers and minds of his generation,” said Walters.

“Then shockingly, he resigned as head of the CIA because he’d had an extramarital affair with Paula Broadwell, his biographer. … The story was irresistible.”

“The keeper of the nation’s secrets, unable to conceal his own.”

Yes … the story of a man attracted to a younger woman who was taken with him is so unique.

Paula Broadwell, of course, was revealed as Petraeus mistress after apparently emailing Jill Kelley, another woman he knew socially, and telling her to step off.

Petraeus has been married to his wife, Holly, for 37 years.

On the entertainment side, Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane received a spot, along with British boy band One Direction and 50 Shades of Grey author E L James.

Political nods went to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

What do you think of David Petraeus as the year’s most fascinating person?