SEAL details bin Laden raid on "60 Minutes"
(CBS News) In Abbotobad, Pakistan on May 1, 2011 two teams of Navy SEALs landed at a mysterious compound and then jumped out of helicopters and into history - and into the spotlight. The second place somewhere few SEALs are ever comfortable being.
"Mark Owen," one of the Navy SEALs who fired "several rounds" into Osama bin Laden's "twitching and convulsing" body "until he was motionless," knows that he and his fellow SEALs have become the face of the bin Laden raid. But, he insists in an interview with Scott Pelley for "60 Minutes," the SEALs really just took care of the last 40 minutes; other Americans worked on it for years.
One of the people who worked for years on plans for the bin Laden raid is a woman whom Owen - in his book, "No Easy Day" - refers to as "Jen" ["Mark Owen" and "Jen" are both fictitious names invented to prevent the identities of everyone involved in the raid.]
Owen told Pelley that Jen "kind of teed up this whole thing."
She worked with the SEAL teams as they prepared for the raid and flew from Virginia Beach, Va., to Afghanistan with Owen and his fellow SEALs for the mission. Pelley told Norah O'Donnell on "Face the Nation" that on that flight, Jen told Owen she's "100 percent sure that Osama bin Laden is in the house." That's about 30 percent more sure than the president, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and others had reported being when the go-ahead was given.
The president got a popularity boost after bin Laden's death, but some say this new book might reflect poorly on him, and that the timing of the release - Sept. 4, two months before Election Day - is politically motivated.
Owen disputes that. "Shame on anyone" who thinks this is about politics," he told Pelley. The book was initially set to be released on the anniversary of September 11, he said, as an "effort to get the history of the raid straight."
In the book, Owen writes, "To date, how the mission to kill bin Laden has been reported is wrong.... I feel like someone had to tell the true story. To me, the story is bigger than the raid itself."
In the book, "Owen" used fake names for all of the operatives. For the "60 Minutes" interview, Pelley explained that the team at CBS News hired "the best Hollywood makeup artists" to work with Owen for over four hours each day to perfect a disguise that changed his look entirely, in order to help protect him and his family from retaliation. Pelley said even he didn't even recognize Owen when he first saw him in makeup.Navy SEAL on "wicked smart" woman involved in bin Laden raid
FACE THE NATION: Roundtable discusses political effects of "No Easy Day" publicationThe entire episode of the Sunday, September 9th edition of "60 Minutes" is devoted to Pelley's interview with Owen.
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