New York: A former Navy Seals commando, against whom the Pentagon has threatened legal action for writing a first-person account of the Osama bin Laden raid, breached the military's non-disclosure agreements because of "bad blood" with his unit from which he had been "ostracised."
A new e-book written by other Special Operations veterans reveals that Matt Bissonnette, author of the book on the May 2, 2011, raid that killed Bin Laden, was effectively pushed out of SEAL 'Team 6' after he expressed interest last year in leaving the Navy and starting a business.
Bissonnette was upset at how he had been treated and the "bad blood" with his former unit led him to break "the code of silence" honored by many commandos. He felt less compunction about writing a book that he knew might upset colleagues, according to a report in the New York Times.
Bissonnette's book No Easy Day is written under the pseudonym Mark Owen. The e-book No Easy Op is scheduled to go on sale on Monday, a day before Bissonnette's book is released.
"How was he repaid for his honesty and 14 years of service?" a passage of the e-book reads. "He was ostracized from his unit with no notice and handed a plane ticket back to Virginia from a training operation."
The Pentagon has threatened to take legal action against Bissonnette, saying he violated his signed agreement not to divulge classified information.
The e-book offers a few details about Bissonnette's team.
It says team members loudly celebrated their successful mission at a bar in Virginia Beach, causing them to be reprimanded.
In a statement, Kevin Maurer, a journalist and co-author of No Easy Day, said: "After spending several very intense months working with Mark Owen on this book, I know that he wrote this book solely to share a story about the incredible men and women defending America all over the world.
"Any suggestion otherwise is as ill informed as it is inaccurate. What's more, Mark has an unshakable respect for the US military, in particular the men he served with. That's why not one negative word was written about anyone he served with." The e-book calls Bissonnette "an operator's operator."
While the authors say it is highly unlikely that Bissonnette revealed any vital information about SEAL tactics and procedures, they criticised Bissonnette for not submitting the book to defense authorities for review.
They said he could have eased concerns about security leaks. The e-book also describes differences between SEAL members and other Special Operations forces.
In the infantry-bred world of Army Special Operations, the authors write, "No one wants to hear braggarts telling tall tales of their heroics," while "a culture of boasting and arrogance continues to haunt the SEALs."
The authors feel that No Easy Day "will result in blowback that will drive policy change across the entire Special Operations community regarding operators' ability to write books in the future. Hollywood and media access will b virtually impossible for the foreseeable future."
No Easy Op is a product of sofrep.com, a website produced by former commandos and focussed to the news, culture and weaponry of Special Operations forces.