About Matt Bissonette
“The two reasons [Bissonette] wrote this book were to raise awareness about the sacrifices the SEALs make and to raise money for charities that support fallen SEALs,” Dutton spokesperson Christine Ball.
Dear Mr. Tart:
It's seeing PR sound bytes and books like "No Easy Day" that make me want to vomit everything I've ever eaten since 1959.
First off, we all know this "tell-all" book was actually written, as with all books by right wing neanderthals-cum-auteurs, a ghost writer. In this case, it's Kevin Maurer, a guy who's been
embedded with special ops teams before and ought to know more than your typical Bob Novak wannabe about what a minefield a book of this type can be.
Some liberals, people with whom I'm best acquainted, have a skewed focus regarding this book that's been cynically slated for a September 11th 2012 publication date (real classy, I have to admit, to cash in on the deaths of nearly 3000 innocents while tying that day to bin Laden, a notion that is adorably antiquated and of course completely fabricated). They're looking for "Gotcha" moments and cherry-picking what's untrue. However, it's the special forces community past and present (I am in the latter, being a former SEAL myself) that, rightly, is more concerned with what's in it that is true
It's not as if this hasn't happened before. Look at jailbird Dick Marcinko and his Red Cell and other books, that another opportunistic, scumbag literary agent and acquisitions editor saw fit to publish to our enduring embarrassment and trepidation. But I would think the PR fallout from those book would've been your counsel. But not when there's money to be made, obviously.
The timing of this book, practically the 11th hour of an election, so incredibly makes this a Swiftboating, partisan exercise I find it stupefying that you'd send your flak Christine Ball out there to say that Bissonnette's book isn't in fact politically motivated and was, instead, ghost-written with the altruistic intention of helping out families of fallen SEALs. While there's no way to verify whether or not that's true or if he's already blown half his advance at Melvin's Gun Emporium in Anchorage, it's insulting to our intelligence you would try to get anyone to believe that the pot shots he takes at his Commander in Chief were strictly coincidental.
Granted, like the angry Pentagon, I haven't seen this book nor ever intend to read such treasonous tripe. Yet it's my understanding that Bissonnette's contention is that the actual account of the night Osama bin Laden was allegedly killed (with all evidence dumped in the drink in the dead of night like the last scene of a Sopranos episode) is the first account we got from Obama's counter-terrorism czar, John Brennan. If that's true, then why did Brennan continue changing the story literally every few hours in the first days after the May 1st raid?
And what's the matter with the President mentioning it once in a while in a matter of fact way (Not bragging about it and taking credit for it as Bush, for instance, took credit for hanging Saddam and rescuing people from rooftops in New Orleans that he never rescued)?
Indeed, if we were to listen to Brennan closely, as I was, the story not only evolved every few hours but made the raid sound more and more bungled. First bin Laden had a weapon in his hands and we engaged. Then he was "within reach" of a weapon and we engaged. Then, finally, we heard from Brennan that, well, no, he wasn't actually within arm's reach of a weapon but he pushed his wife toward us in a hostile manner and we engaged.
Meanwhile, what the completely worthless MSM didn't play up was, during the first account from John O. Brennan, the SEALs and CIA (30 operators, to be exact, to take on 5 al Qaeda gunmen, making a mockery of Bissonnette's title, "No Easy Day", a reference to our motto in the SEALs, "The only easy day was yesterday.") had clear rules of engagement (ROE): Do not engage bin Laden unless he was armed and engages. Then we eventually learned the SEALs opened up on him even though he wasn't close to being armed and the original ROE was, technically, still in effect.
Let me tell you a bit about what it means to be a former SEAL, Mr. Tart, hard as it may be to imagine for you who's obviously never suffered an injury more grievous than getting your tie caught in a shredder:
No operator, whether he's SEAL, Delta Force, Green Beret, CIA or otherwise goes into an op without a clearly defined ROE in the pre-op briefing. A shifting ROE is what got things fucked up at Ruby Ridge and again at Waco. And the planning of the mission in Abbottabad, Pakistan was a clusterfuck from virtually every conceivable standpoint. Let's start with the air density of the elevated complex, which the SEALs didn't even try to recon because if they knew the air wasn't dense enough to support the experimental chopper they used, they never would've taken it up there to abandon on the other side of the wall only to blow up so it wouldn't fall into al Qaeda's hands.
The mission only looks like a success unless one refuses to believe, pending concrete evidence, that bin Laden was indeed killed. You send in 30 operators armed to the teeth against just five bad guys you'd damned well better have 30 men walk away from five dead bad guys. It set on its ear everything we've ever been taught about special forces: Smaller units for big missions. SEAL teams used to be 16 men. Now they're 10. Suddenly, we're resorting to overkill and have to depend on a 5-1 saturation rate to ensure anything remotely resembling success?
Methinks they didn't adequately recon the area to get the enemy's strength, either.
And now we're supposed to believe that the story told to us by Obama's own right hand man that had since been revised more times than a college freshman's term paper was really the right one all along and we're supposed to take this clown Bissonnette at face value through his ghost writer?
Another reason why a book like this makes me want to puke blood is not because this neanderthal, whose most oft posted picture makes him look like a sweatier, more bug-eyed version of Bill Paxton in Aliens, comes out of nowhere, spills national security secrets that could leave him (and you and your publishing company) up on charges of treason because you were more concerned about money, money, money and not at all about actually vetting the facts or running it through the Pentagon.
No, that's not what angers me the most. What angers me the most is that this big-mouthed prick Bissonnette, altruist or no, got a pile of money for a book you and I both know he didn't write and still trading on his Navy SEAL experience.
Meanwhile, here I am, 53, going on 54, no closer to getting an agent or a publishing contract than I was the day I was conceived. I've failed going on 20 years getting an agent with an actual brain in their head and have been even more studiously ignored by an incompetent, lazy and disinterested publishing establishment losing vast acres of ground to an upstart electronic publishing technology that insists on dealing only with agents and not (icky poo) actual authors.
Unlike this right wing lunatic Bissonnette, some of us, as I, have moved on and are pursuing dreams more substantial than reliving our glory days of killing people and blowing shit up. Some of us, as I, wish to actually give something back to the world other than rubble and dead bodies. Some of us, as I, would like to be novelists. Or sculptors. Or composers. Anything, God, other than what we were trained to do on Coronado.
Sadly, the most notorious ex SEALs are either jailbirds (Marcinko), future jailbirds (Bissonnette) or ought to be jailbirds (Blackwater's Erik Prince). The rest of us who do have other talents that actually integrate in the real world and that don't involve murdering civilians or actual bad guys and creating rubble don't have a chance because we're not willing to have ghost-written for us politically partisan books that involve lies and classified intelligence and are willing to see them opportunistically published on the most notorious and bloodiest day in American history.
In other words, if we're not willing to sell out and speak treasonously against our Commander in Chief to grasping avaricious scum such as yourself, your colleagues and the agents with whom you deal, we haven't a chance. Meanwhile, we have to endure the fulfillment of our slide into Idiocracy with every ghost-written book with the names of right wing hacks so Big Publishing can make a couple of million more in its losing battle against technology.
I remain, most disrespectfully,
Robert Crawford, USN, Ret.