Many have heard of the controversial "tell-all" book No Easy Day on the Osama bin Laden raid, due to be released today. A first-person account of the deadly mission, the author "Mark Owen" (a pseudonym, though his real name has been leaked) has drawn significant fire from his colleagues for some what some are deeming "the greatest betrayal the community has ever known."
Because the book didn't go through a Department of Defense review, there is speculation that it may contain compromising information. But more than that, there is a sense of dishonor associated with "cashing in" on the dangerous work done by the brave men, the rest of whom keep quiet in their dignity.
Now, the Special Options Forces Situation Report (SOFREP), a group of the man's former colleagues, have written a rebuttal: No Easy Op: The Unclassified Analysis of the Book Detailing the Killing of OBL.
In their opinion, it does not matter whether the Obama administration had already politicized the raid, or indeed, if they lied about how it happened. It is not Owen's job to set the record straight and correct the country's elected officials.
"This is essentially the two wrongs make a right argument," they note. "If a politician can get away with it [then] so should a former SEAL who was on the raid. This argument is particularly appealing to those who oppose the current president, of course."
Moreover, they have serious doubts about just how noble Owen's intentions were. According to the authors, Owen "was treated very poorly upon his departure … [and] once he openly shared that he was considering getting out of the Navy to pursue other interests.”
“What do you do when you find yourself pissed off at your former employer, out of a job, and in need of a paycheck? You start cashing in chips,” they argue.
A number of Owen's former colleagues have already condemned the man in the strongest of terms, and the authors of "No Easy Day" don't predict there will be a change of heart.
“Members of the Special Operations community are well known for eating their own,” they warn, noting that others who have behaved similarly "are considered personae non grata by their former units...members are instructed to never talk to the author and the author is never to be allowed to participate in unit functions again.”
A Blaze contributor and former Navy SEAL felt similarly, writing: "Mark, the men who stood next to you should have been everything you needed. Now we weep from your betrayal and we pray for your soul."
One of the risks, they note, is what they call a “Threat Chain.”
Once one person is exposed there are a chain of people at risk. Within 48 hours of the initial press release an Al Qaeda affiliate had put out a death hit on the author.
Then, when FOX News leaked his true identity it became easy for people to search openly on the Internet and secure public records that pointed the his last place of residence in Virginia Beach, VA. And what about his friends, and their families that still live in this neighborhood?
But what of the book itself, aside from the author's integrity? Will it have details on the raid that the American people seem to crave?
Yes and no, they predict:
The reading public will get their dose of reality, no argument there.
However, when it comes to military operations, the details matter, [and] most of the intimate details will not be included in “No Easy Day,” which we believe is a good thing. It remains to be seen whether classified material was published. The DOD General counsel has yet to point out specific disclosures. For better or for worse, this book will become the established narrative on the raid, the only “truth.” In the public eye this will probably be the final word on how the Bin Laden raid was executed. Contradictory information will be scorned once the public has made an investment in the story unfolded in “No Easy Day,” and maybe this is a good thing.
In the end, they say, while Owen may have had "good intentions," No Easy Day "is nothing more than a well-executed marketing strategy that will make the author and publisher tens of millions over night."
Click here to be redirected to No Easy Op: The Unclassified Analysis of the Book Detailing the Killing of OBL.