I pre-ordered my Kindle copy of “No Easy Day” yesterday. This is the book written by a former Navy SEAL about his experience during the Osama bin Ladin raid that resulted in his much awaited (at least on my end) demise. I must admit, I’m a bit uneasy about this. My son ran into my room at 2300 that night and screamed at the top of his lungs that Osama bin Ladin was killed. The munchkin was happy. After all, bin Ladin orchestrated the terrorist attack on the United States that would forever mar my little boy’s birthday! The Redhead was ecstatic, to say the least! We all were. And now, a book comes out that contradicts everything we thought was true about this stupendous day – a book that may possibly (and hopefully unintentionally) reveal sensitive information, including TTPs (tactics, techniques and procedures) of the nation’s elite warriors.
But I want to read this book. I want to read it with every fiber of my being. I want a first-hand account of that bastard’s death without the politicians’ flourishes, without the President patting himself on the back, and without his acolytes’ hyping how he personally parachuted into the compound and eviscerated bin Ladin with his bare hands, while consoling his wives, personally gathering intel to be exploited later, and sipping a beer.
I want to know what happened from someone who was there.
Unfortunately, sometimes honesty comes with a price.
The Pentagon warned on Thursday that it was considering legal action against a former U.S. Navy SEAL for material breach of non-disclosure agreements with his first-hand account of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
In a letter obtained by Reuters, and subsequently released by the Pentagon, the Pentagon’s top attorney said the Department of Defense was also considering legal action against anyone “acting in concert” with the author. It hinted that the book’s royalties might be subject to government claims.
The letter, addressed to “Mark Owen,” the pseudonym under which the book was written, identified two separate non-disclosure agreements he signed with the Navy that legally committed him to never divulge classified information, which is a crime.
The Pentagon is legally in the right here. The book was apparently never vetted to ensure no secrets were revealed. This is one of the first things you are briefed on when you sign on with the DoD. Any article, book or other piece of writing you may do about your job needs to be approved to ensure that classified information remains classified, and you sign legally-binding contracts to that effect. The author had to have known that! And yet, he went ahead and published this book anyway. He’s either extremely dedicated to telling the truth, or he’s stupid.
And while I’m not the paranoid type, I can’t imagine the former SEAL is stupid, and ergo there must be a story in there that needs to be told – a story vastly different from the official account!
I’m curious, though, how the pseudonym of Mark Owen became linked with the true identity of the author, former SEAL Matt Bissonnette. Who talked, and why?