Phil Bronstein, the author of the Esquire article, “The Man Who Killed Osama bin Laden … Is Screwed,” wrote that the Navy SEAL who killed Osama bin Laden claimed he was denied health benefits and retirement and that he was never given information about what was available to him. The SEAL has injuries as a result of his service.
The SEAL referred to as “The Shooter” in the Esquire article said he felt abandoned by the Navy. Read the story here and check out the comments section.
Phil Bronstein could have written a fascinating piece about the shooter and his heroism by just reporting the details of the event but he chose instead to make it into a hit piece.
The entire point of the article focused on the SEAL being wronged by the Navy. It might have sold magazines but it was not a good piece of journalism as we are finding out.
The Commander of the Naval Special Warfare Command has come out with the following statement:
“This former SEAL made a deliberate and informed decision to leave the Navy several years short of retirement status,” Rear Adm. Sean Pybus, commander of Naval Special Warfare Command, wrote in a statement. “Months ahead of his separation, he was counseled on status and benefits, and provided with options to continue his career until retirement eligible. Claims to the contrary in these matters are false.”
Pybus said he is “very disappointed with the few people who use their SEAL cachet for self-serving purposes, particularly through falsehoods and certainly when the safety and security of themselves and their active-duty teammates and families are put at risk.” [NBC]
The Commander added that the Navy will help the SEAL with his health issues as they would any Navy veteran.
I don’t know what the SEALs physical and emotional condition are and how culpable he is in relaying misinformation. However, Mr. Bronstein should have done his homework before he wrote his “explosive” article which ended up demeaning the military unfairly with Senators calling the VA a “failed system.”
In fact, it appears that Mr. Bronstein was intent on writing an article that garnered publicity while paying little attention to facts.