Government gave blessing to ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ movie, persecutes ex-Navy SEAL for book

The former Navy SEAL who wrote a bestselling memoir of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden is tired of friendly fire — and a double standard that makes it possible.

Matthew Bissonnette, who wrote the 2012 book “No Easy Day” under the pen name of Mark Owen, told “60 Minutes” on Sunday that the past two years of being cut off by his former comrades and under investigation by the Pentagon have been miserable, expensive and lonely.

“I would go back overseas today and deal with fighting ISIS face-to-face rather than deal with the last two years again,” he said.

Bissonnette is one of two SEALs who were on the bin Laden raid who are in trouble with the Pentagon. A Defense Department spokesman told Business Insider that the SEAL who actually pulled the trigger and killed the terrorist leader could face criminal charges for discussing the attack on a Fox News documentary scheduled to be aired next week.

Bissonnette’s main problem is that “No Easy Day” was published without a Pentagon review of the manuscript, a decision he said he made based on the advice of his former attorney. He said he now sees that as a mistake, but makes no apologies for the book itself.

“How many former secretaries of defense have written books?” he said. “How many former generals have written books?

“Did I disclose anything that would put these guys in harm’s way? That’s absolutely not right.”

But that’s not how some of his fellow SEALs see it. They want nothing to do with him.

When the controversy after “No Easy Day’s” publication got intense, he said, “I wanted to reach out to my former command and say, “Hey, look, sir, let’s discuss. I have nothing to hide,’” he said. ‘I got a text message back just simply saying, you know, “Delete me.”‘

Bissonnette told CBS he’s in negotiations with the Pentagon now to settle its investigation against him. One option could mean he has to turn over a substantial portion of the earnings from “No Easy Day” to the government – money he said he planned to donate to SEALs-related charity.

Bissonnette’s attorney, Bob Luskin, who was also interviewed, told “60 Minutes” his client is facing a double standard from. The same government that gave full cooperation to the producers of the hit movie “Zero Dark Thirty,” is investigating Bissonnette for providing the same information in his book, he said.

“There clearly is something outrageous about the process as a whole,” Luskin said.

Bissonnette has written a new book about his experience of the past two years called “No Hero: The Evolution of a Navy SEAL.” He’s submitted it for Pentagon approval.

Check out the “60 Minutes” interview here.

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