Rob O’Neill, the former Navy SEAL who says he killed Osama bin Laden, did an interview Monday in which he slammed a controversial new investigative report on the incident.
O’Neill said the report, by veteran journalist Seymour Hersh, was “full of lies.”
“When I was first sent this article, I thought it was a joke,” he said on Fox News. “This thing is so ludicrous it’s almost an insult to the word ‘ludicrous.'”
Hersh wrote in a 10,000-word London Review of Books story published Sunday night that the death of bin Laden actually involved an extensive cover-up. Among other things, Hersh’s mostly anonymous sources said the US military worked in collaboration with the Pakistani government to kill bin Laden, whom Pakistan reportedly sheltered for years before the US found out.
The US and Pakistani governments both said Pakistan had no advance warning of the 2011 raid to kill the Al Qaeda leader, a move intended to keep bin Laden from learning of the attack. Indeed, Pakistan called the act “an unauthorized unilateral action,” and relations between the two countries were publicly strained as a result.
The White House and other American officials have also blasted Hersh’s report as wildly inaccurate. O’Neill further said it was preposterous to suggest the US government’s account was an elaborate lie.
“For this guy to have a few guys from Pakistan just lie to him and to write this ridiculous story, it’s a comedy,” he said. “Everything we said we did, we did. The story, it took me a long time to read it because I had to put it down. I couldn’t read the nonsense.”
For his part, Hersh — who won a Pulitzer Prize after exposing the US’ My Lai massacre during the Vietnam War — repeatedly defended his story on Monday.
“The White House doesn’t like adverse stories that are contrary to what they want the public to believe,” the journalist told Business Insider, saying the same thing was true during the Vietnam era. “It’s always going to be that way. I don’t think there’s anything remarkably different now.”
Watch O’Neill’s Fox News interview below:
SOURCE: Business Insider – Colin Campbell