LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A retired Navy SEAL, who was one of 24 men present at the killing of Osama bin Laden, talked to CBS News anchor Scott Pelley in a “60 Minutes” interview that will air Sunday, September 9 at 7 p.m.
The SEAL Team 6 member is going by the pseudonym Mark Owen. His face and voice were both disguised in the CBS interview.
Fox News, and later the Associated Press, used the SEAL’s real name. CBS has chosen not to publish this information.
Owen has penned a book about the mission to kill bin Laden. He says the book is not a political statement and is timed to coincide with the anniversary of 9/11.
His book about the raid, “No Easy Day,” will be available next week.
Owen’s account of what happened that fateful evening often differ dramatically with the Pentagon’s version of events. For one thing, he says Bin Laden was unarmed when he was shot.
Suzie Suh, reporting for CBS2 and KCAL9, said Owen could face an investigation because he didn’t clear the book with Defense Department officials.
Owen was on the helicopter that crashed in bin Laden’s compound. He was the second man in the room when bin Laden was shot, he took the photographs of the body that were never released. But Owen told us the story is not about him — it’s the story of hundreds of Americans who spent years gathering intelligence, planning and training of the SEALs, Owen says, “We just took care of the last 40 minutes.”
The release of the book has been moved up to next week. There’s been criticism that the release of “No Easy Day” is timed to influence the election.
Owen worried his book would be politicized. “This book is not political whatsoever. It doesn’t bad mouth either party, and we specifically chose September 11th to keep it out of the politics. You know, if these– crazies on either side of the aisle want to make it political, shame on them. This is a book about September 11th, and it needs to rest on September 11th. Not be brought into the political arena, because this– this has nothing to do with politics.”