Small Wars Journal

Spec-Ops Command: SEAL Raid Book 'a Lie'

Spec-Ops Command: SEAL Raid Book 'a Lie' by Kimberly Dozier, Associated Press.

The U.S. military is denouncing a former Navy SEAL's book that claims to describe the "real" version of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden.

"It's just not true," U.S. Special Operations Command spokesman Col. Tim Nye said. "It's not how it happened."

Laden with conspiracy theories and attacks on the Obama White House, Chuck Pfarrer's "SEAL Target Geronimo" claims an alternative version of the raid…


Every significant military event or battle will be re-fought over and over again by writers, generally by those who were not there.

While I am a former Naval Officer, I know little or really nothing about SEAL Team operations. I stumbled on the author marketing his book on a TV news show, listened for a few minutes, found some of his analytical style commentary temporarily interesting, was mostly bored during the few short minutes I watched it, thought his continued professing that he was serving the best interests of the Seal Team's reputation to be self serving, generally thought that he did not appear to be in good physical shape and looked like he let himself go, and decided the book probably not worth reading.

We do, however, live in the world of the first amendment and this is how he makes his living. He is not talking any more than the non-stop public conversing by many members of the government and military directly after the raid--which I thought was rather foolish, as did the then Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, albeit rather late.

What now amuses me even more is the fact that the active duty military appears to be publicly reacting to this book. What they should have done is to have ignored it. Negatively commenting on the book will (probably) only motivate more people to read it. Of course, it is to late for that. Our current era military brass (active duty and retired) talk to much, especially about on-going or recent operational matters. They need to develop the art of silence or the use of the proverbial statement to the effect that "We do not comment on these type matters."

This, however, is only the opinion of an aging former Naval Officer from the 1960's Vietnam era and maybe I am out of touch with and don't understand current policy and procedures.

Dave Maxwell

Tue, 11/15/2011 - 7:07am

This is an important article.  First Kimberly Dozier exposes Pfarrer for the fraud that he is (note the basic facts he gets wrong and I wonder if he was in that "Zen-conscious"" state of the SEALs when he was being interviewed by her?).  Second, Tim Nye, USSOCOM PAO is on record saying the book is just not true.  As he says that just is not done and I think it is an indication that there really is something wrong with this book – this is not the typical denial trying to deflect something embarrassing (though the book is an embarrassment not for SOCOM and the SEALs but for Pfarrer himself and anyone who believes what he has written).  Third, note that there is no investigation to determine who talked to Pfarrer which is an indication that the information in the book is so erroneous that no one truly associated with the mission could have provided him such information. 

And for him to invoke classification when discussing some of his actions (training Naval Special Warfare on "submissions" and parallel HVT missions) just begs for him to be investigated.  Does he hold a security clearance?  If so it would seem to me that he might have violated laws by talking about training NWS on these submissions and  parallel HVT missions.  He cannot have it both ways. I think he may have gone beyond satori and that Zen-conscious state and got stuck in a state of delusion.