Former Navy Seal, Robert O’Neil, has come out and identified himself as the one who shot and killed terrorist leader, Osama Bin Laden.
O’Neil was one of twenty-three members of SEAL team 6, along with one interpreter, that participated in Operation Neptune Spear that took place in Abbottobad, Pakistan.
Just after midnight on May 2, 2011, SEAL team 6 stormed into the Bin Laden compound that resulted in the death of the terrorist leader as well as both of his bodyguards, his wife and one of his two sons.
The 38 year old Montana Native had also participated in other specialized missions such as, being the lead jumper onto the Maersk Alabama (the ship that was hijacked by Somali pirates back in 2009) and was also involved in the rescue of former Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell, who was trapped in the Hindu-Kush Mountains in eastern Afghanistan, when the mission he was on went bad.
Because O’Neil came out and identified himself as the shooter he has been receiving some negative responses from the Naval Special Warfare community.
Head of Naval Special Warfare Command, Rear Admiral Brian Losey, and Force Master Chief Michael Magaraci sent out a letter to Special Warfare sailors reminding them of core values and the SEAL ethos.
In the letter it reads, “At Naval Special Warfare’s core is the SEAL ethos,” “A critical tenant of our ethos is ‘I do not advertise the nature of my work, nor seek recognition for my actions.’ Our ethos is a life-long commitment and obligation, both in and out of the service. Violators of our ethos are neither teammates in good standing, nor teammates who represent Naval Special Warfare.”
The letter suggests that anyone who shares details of classified missions without first clearing it with the government, can and will be prosecuted by the United States Government. The letter was used as a deterrent and reminder for sailors wanting to go public about operations they are and have been involved in.