Navy Seal gives interview on Bin Laden book No Easy Day

Copies of a book by former Navy SEAL titled "No Easy Day" are seen on display at a bookstore in Washington, DC The book has shot to the top of US bestseller lists

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The first interview has been aired with a former US special forces member who wrote a first-hand account of the May 2011 raid that killed Osama Bin Laden.

The Navy Seal, who uses the pseudonym Mark Owen, was interviewed by the US television network CBS.

Mr Owen repeated his claim that Bin Laden was shot as soon as he looked out of his bedroom, contrary to the official version of events.

The Pentagon has said it may sue Mr Owen for divulging military secrets.

In the interview, Mr Owen - who has been identified by US media as Matt Bissonnette - defended what he said was the manner of Bin Laden's death.

"If a guy sticks his head around the corner he very easily could have a gun," he told CBS' 60 Minutes programme.

"You don't wait to get that AK or the grenade thrown down the hall or the suicide vest," he added.

He said that Bin Laden was still moving after the first shot and was shot again when the Seals entered the room.

"[The Seals] couldn't see his hands. So, he could've had something. Could've had a hand grenade or something underneath his chest," Mr Owen said.

The compound in Abbottabad in north-west Pakistan where Bin Laden was shot dead Mr Owen's book contradicts the official version of Bin Laden's death at a compound in north-west Pakistan

US officials had stated he was shot only after he had ducked back into the bedroom, prompting fears he might be grabbing a weapon.

'Improper disclosure'

Mr Owen told of a later meeting with President Obama at which the Navy Seals refused to tell him which of them had shot Bin Laden.

"Pulling a trigger is easy.... It's not about who that one person was, it's about the team... that teed this whole thing up," Mr Owen said.

"Who cares who the one person is. Doesn't matter," he added.

The book was not reviewed ahead of publication by the Pentagon, CIA or the White House - and officials had warned that criminal charges could result from the improper disclosure of secret information.

The Pentagon's general counsel, Jeh Johnson, has written to the author to inform him that "in the judgment of the Department of Defense, you are in material breach and violation of the non-disclosure agreements you signed."

The Pentagon is considering "all remedies legally available to us", the letter added.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 219.

    A wide range of public and private organisations ask their staff to sign confidentiality agreements or the Official Secrets Act or its equivalent before they undertake certain duties. If they have a problem they do not sign and do not undertake the work. Having signed they should shut up and refuse the financial offers made by that bastion of ethical behaviour the media industry to tell tales.

  • rate this

    Comment number 218.

    Realist @ 123. Points noted. I too get irritated that America wants to be the world police force, but who else can keep these people in check? Israel needs all the help it can get right now, where is Britain's offer of help. There has to be recognition that every dispute in the World now has militant muslims in the thick of it. We are sleeping our way to militant muslim World domination.

  • Comment number 217.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this

    Comment number 216.

    "The BL affair has been a textbook example of "Realpolitik"
    Why are we not so robust when it comes to the ideological battle?"
    Some idiots here still happily ignore the constitutional scrutiny under which GWB operated . How much scrutiny was BL's regime subject to?

  • rate this

    Comment number 215.

    210.Follow Truth-How can we say the story by the SEAL is true? Many people don't believe that BL was killed that day. The gov might be playing another trick to prove that he was killed that day.
    You mean a little lie to hide a big lie? Some people might be over analysing something that really doesn't matter. Safe to say BL is dead, how, why & exactly when doesn't make much difference to most.

  • rate this

    Comment number 214.

    "194.Trout Mask Replica
    It's well known that several different witnesses to any event (especially violent ones) acting in good faith recall the sequence and nature of events very differently..."

    I meant to allude to the political angle. not who's telling tales. The US cannot admit it assassinated Bin Laden (though obviously it did), so it has to imply self-defence, whether true or not.

  • rate this

    Comment number 213.

    @135 what are you on about? The Nuremberg Trials are notorious for being victor's justice i.e. a show trial. Read this and then tell me they were fair. Nothing has changed. This is the same old government bullying the smaller individual. Jean Jacques Rousseau was right 'men are born free, but everywhere else they are in chains.'

  • rate this

    Comment number 212.

    If ever he signed the so called document then he must be charged. Getting rid of Bin laden was a good thing because not only was he a threat to the US but he was determined to bring the whole world to its knees

  • Comment number 211.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • rate this

    Comment number 210.

    How can we say the story by Nave SEAL is true? Many people don't believe that Bin Laden was killed that day. The government might be playing another trick to prove that Laden was killed that day.

  • rate this

    Comment number 209.

    Moving on. It is widely accepted that politics is becoming corrupt but an entire paradigm shift is required to stop it. A more accurate question or analysis may be to look at the comparitors and ask if they are more so.

    The likes of US & UK are amazingly destructive of their own successes. Why is it now disected in the details of how it was completed? Do not forget who the terrorist was.

  • rate this

    Comment number 208.


    Many would see it as state-sponsored murder. Obama should be tried and, if found guilty of ordering this murder, imprisoned


    No - 'many' would not see Obama and Bin Laden as morally equivalent. Only embittered bigots whose hatred of the US has added their brains

  • rate this

    Comment number 207.

    165.Trout Mask Replica

    This 'deception' is so big that it would bother any good, logical thinking human being... and so it should! Sorry to quote but I think this is the answer...

    "When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth" - Sherlock Holmes

  • rate this

    Comment number 206.

    Bin Laden is dead, I don't want to know the details.

    Nice to know that the Bin Laden family will be in receipt of royalties from the book.

  • rate this

    Comment number 205.

    The BL affair has been a textbook example of "Realpolitik"
    Why are we not so robust when it comes to the ideological battle?

  • rate this

    Comment number 204.

    140.BluesBerry - "...I'm not even sure that the man that was killed was Bin Laden....The only think I truly believe is that someone got killed, dumped at sea, preventing any positive ID...& giving the Obama Administration a celebratory boost."
    So why hasn't Bin Laden popped up on Al Jazera since to make fools of them? Take the tin foil hat off.

    Looks like a duck, quacks like a duck...

  • rate this

    Comment number 203.

    @198.Rosetta The relevance of Capitol Hill is that given the right PR, the plug could have been pulled on US (and thusly ISAF) involvement in Afghan at any time within the last ten years. If you are saying that the reason this didn't happen was because of the control of Afghan opium, you would have to substantiate the value of this to decision makers in Washington; but you haven't.

  • rate this

    Comment number 202.

    The Pentagon raises the prospect of litigation against a book which it claims is inaccurate ('fiction'). How strange!

    Whilst the book will have interest to some, the main thing is Bin Laden now longer poses a threat to the lives of many.

    How he actually died is of minor consequence to the many.

  • rate this

    Comment number 201.

    Britain must be the only country in the world where perpetrators of crime have more rights than victims."

    No they don't. Perpetrators and victims of crime are all protected by the European Convention on Human Rights and have exactly the same rights against the arbitrary power of the state in 47 different countries. Perps just tend to need to exercise those rights more frequently.

  • rate this

    Comment number 200.

    Given Bradley Manning's experience, revealing possible US military secrets could be seen as foolish, whatever the rights and wrongs.


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