US Navy seal pens book on Osama killing

Aug 24, 2012, 07:26 IST | Agencies

A member of the team that killed the al-Qaeda chief has written a firsthand account of the operation, triggering more questions about the release of classified information

Details of the top secret US special forces mission to kill Osama Bin Laden are set to be revealed for the first time. A member of the Navy SEAL team has written a first-hand account of the historic assault on the terror leader’s Pakistan compound.

The author of the book — entitled No Easy Day and scheduled for release next month on the 11th anniversary of 9/11 — has left the military and uses the pseudonym Mark Owen. He describes the account as an effort to “set the record straight about one of the most important missions in US military history”.

Tell all: The book No Easy Day reveals details about the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden and will be released on the 11th anniversary of 9/11. Pic/AFP

Owen also says it is about the sacrifices special forces make and is written in the hope it will inspire young men to become SEALs. But news of its publication has triggered fears among top military brass that classified information might be released.

US military officials claim the book has not been read or cleared by the Defense Department, which reviews publications by military members to prevent the disclosure of secret material.

While Owen’s publishers claim the work has been vetted by a former special operations attorney, officials at the Pentagon, White House and CIA have said their agencies have not seen the book. “I haven’t read the book and am unaware that anyone in the Department has reviewed it,” said Pentagon spokesman George Little.

Defense Department spokesman Lt Col James Gregory said if the book reveals classified information about the raid, the Pentagon would “defer to the Department of Justice” and former SEAL Owen could face criminal charges.

Last week, a group of retired Navy Seals and national security officials released a video attacking President Barack Obama over the alleged release of information, accusing him of using the operation for political gain.

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