President set limits to Lewinsky affair

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The Independent Online
THE ALLEGED affair between Monica Lewinsky and President Clinton did not go beyond foreplay because of the strict limits set by Mr Clinton himself, according to a friend of Ms Lewinsky, quoted in today's edition of the magazine Newsweek.

Dale Young, 47, a long-standing friend of the Lewinsky family, quotes Ms Lewinsky as saying that Mr Clinton broke off the relationship in September 1997 for the sake of his wife and daughter.

Ms Young testified last week to the grand jury, hearing preliminary evidence in the Lewinsky case. She subsequently recounted some of what she said to Newsweek's investigative reporter, Michael Isikoff.

It was Isikoff's report of the alleged affair between the President and the former White House trainee that precipitated the crisis for the President when it was posted on the Internet in January.

According to Isikoff, Ms Lewinsky told Ms Young of her relations with the President during a hike in Upstate New York on a holiday weekend in May two years ago. She says Ms Lewinsky told her: "I can't stand it, I've got to talk to you. I've got to tell you what's going on, but please don't tell anyone."

She told of intimate touching in a small study off the Oval Office and "sexually charged" late-night phone calls. She admitted to contriving encounters with Mr Clinton and detailed presents she had given him, including a tie and a book.

"But," Ms Young says, "nothing was ever taken to completion... it was basically like foreplay." Ms Lewinsky's explanation, according to Dale Young, was that Mr Clinton "didn't trust anybody... people who he's been involved with have gone to the media, they have gone to their lawyers. He felt it really wasn't oral sex if it wasn't completed".

This latest account of the alleged relationship between the President and Ms Lewinsky sees the light of day on the eve of the first appearance before the grand jury of Linda Tripp, Ms Lewinsky's former friend who secretly taped their conversations. Ms Young's account appears to explain Mr Clinton's televised denial: "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Ms Lewinsky."

Of the break-up, Ms Lewinsky apparently told Ms Young of a tearful Mr Clinton who said that he "wanted Chelsea to be proud of him and he wanted to be a good husband and he didn't want to do anything like this anymore".