The media has revealed the identity of the Navy SEAL who shot terrorist Osama Bin Laden ahead of tonight’s exclusive Fox News interview with the shooter. Senior Chief Petty Officer Rob O’Neill is the SEAL who done did it. Equally unsurprising as the timing of the reveal: The Daily Mail reports that O’Neill has become persona non grata amongst his former SEAL cohorts . . .
In a letter to past and present SEALs, Force Master Chief Michael Magaraci and commander Rear Adm. Brian Losey, made it clear that the vow of silence remains one of the most important tenets of SEAL life.
‘A critical tenant (sic) of our Ethos is ‘I do not advertise the nature of my work, nor seek recognition for my actions.’ Magaraci and Losey wrote.
‘Violators of our Ethos are neither Teammates in good standing, nor Teammates who represent Naval Special Warfare.
‘We do not abide willful or selfish disregard for our core values in return for public notoriety and financial gain, which only diminishes otherwise honorable service, courage and sacrifice.’
The two leaders made it clear that O’Neill’s decision to go public translates into shame among former SEALs, and that he could even face legal action.
‘Classified information is protected by law,’ they wrote.
‘All members exposed to classified information have a duty obligation to protect this information, regardless of what may be reflected in the media, accurately or otherwise.
‘We will actively seek judicial consequence for members who willfully violate the law, and place our Teammates, our Families, and potential future operations at risk.’
Meanwhile, the paper sought out the Montanan’s father to see what his old man thinks about his son taking out Bin Laden and making himself a marked man. And, by extension, the senior O’Neill and the rest of his family.
“People are asking if we are worried that ISIS will come and get us because Rob is going public. I say I’ll paint a big target on my front door and say come and get us.”
Now that is a stupid thing to say. Brave, but stupid. Speaking of brave . . .
In total [O’Neill] was deployed on more than a dozen tours of duty in active combat, in four different warzones, including Iraq and Afghanistan.
In the course of those tours he undertook more than 400 separate combat missions.
He was decorated 52 times, leaving as senior chief petty officer. His decorations include two Silver Stars, four Bronze Stars with Valor, a Joint Service Commendation Medal with Valor, three Presidential Unit citations, and two Navy/Marine Corps Commendations with Valor.
Our thanks to Mr. O’Neill for producing a son of such high caliber. Our thanks to O’Neill for his service to the country and the world. And, as I’m sure the SEAL will echo tonight, our thanks to all the men and women who made his mission possible, and accompanied him on that dangerous journey.
As for his ostracism from his teammates and any potential ensuing legal action, it is what it is.