Outed Author of Bin Laden Book May be Prosecuted
On Thursday, FOX News revealed the identity of the former Navy SEAL Team 6 member who wrote a book about the mission that killed Osama bin Laden. The outed author -- REDACTED -- found himself potentially facing two legal challenges. If he is prosecuted by Obama’s Department of Justice may depend on how favorable the book is toward Obama.
FOX News revealed, and the Associated Press (AP) confirmed, that the person who penned the book “No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden” under the pseudonym “Mark Owen” was a 36-year-old former Navy SEAL Team 6 member named REDACTED.
The book will hit shelves on Sept. 11, and REDACTED may face a civil lawsuit for failing to seek pre-clearance from the Pentagon and CIA before publishing the book in addition to criminal charges for revealing classified information.
Since REDACTED is now retired, any charges against him will have to be brought by the Department of Justice.
Tom Fitton, president of the influential government watchdog group Judicial Watch and author of The Corruption Chronicles: Obama's Big Secrecy, Big Corruption, and Big Government, told Breitbart News that Eric Holder’s Justice Department cannot be a neutral arbiter in this case.
“The DOJ is fundamentally incapable of fairly investigating this issue,” Fitton told Breitbart News. “It is thoroughly politicized.”
According to FOX News, REDACTED writes in the book that "it is time to set the record straight about one of the most important missions in U.S. military history,” suggesting he may reveal details unfavorable to the Obama administration or tell a different story of the events leading up to bin Laden’s death.
Even if there is no classified information in REDACTED's book, the federal government could still confiscate all of the book's proceeds.
In 1970, the U.S. government sued former CIA officer Frank Shepp for publishing a book about his activities in Vietnam without getting pre-publication review.
The Supreme Court ruled, 6-3, that even though the government never claimed the book revealed classified information, Shepp had to forfeit his profits to the government because he was obligated to get pre-publication review as a condition of his employment and receiving access to classified information.
"When a former agent relies on his own judgment about what information is detrimental, he may reveal information that the CIA -- with its broader understanding of what may expose classified information and confidential sources -- could have identified as harmful," the Supreme Court wrote in its opinion then.
REDACTED was part of the SEAL team that rescued Captain Richard Phillips from Somali pirates in 2009 and protected the SEAL Team 6 members on the bin Laden mission by changing all of their names in the book.
If the book does not paint Obama in a favorable light, it will be interesting to see how the Obama administration proceeds given the administration’s own leaking of classified information about the bin Laden killing to the producers of the movie “Zero Dark Thirty,” which will portray the Obama in a heroic light.