Book Review: No Easy Day:Through the Eyes of One of the Heroes that Killed Osama Bin Laden

Posted on September 26, 2012 by


By Joseph Nawn

The raid that occurred on Osama Bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan during Operation Neptune Spear has become one of the most significant military operations in the history of the United States. In the late hours of May 2, 2011 millions cheered and celebrated over the death of the head of the jihadist group known as al-Qaeda. Many reports surfaced after the notorious terrorist was killed and some stories were stranger than the last. When the CIA and the government want something kept secret than they will keep it secret.

Some things may leak and people will put these fragments of the story together in order to create something that they believe to be the truth, but unfortunately if someone were not there, and they were just watching the whole thing from a television or computer than chances are they have created a tale of fiction and turned it into what they believe to be the truth.

Luckily for us, the first primary source on Operation Neptune Spear was finally released on September 4. With the book, No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission that Killed Osama Bin Laden, we not only get a glimpse of the mission that took out the famed Laden himself, but we also get an in-depth perspective into the life of a real Navy Seal.

The primary author, Mark Owen, is actually a pseudonym he uses to protect himself and his family. As a matter of fact he also just did an interview with 60 Minutes where he had a make-up team completely alter his face while having his voice distorted, so one can see how seriously he takes anonymity when it comes to himself or his other friends involved in the mission.

If people can recall the controversy this book started when it was about to be published then they will remember that the controversy was based around Owens’ failure to send the book to the Pentagon before it was published to make sure no secrets or sensitive information was leaked. As a matter of fact Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is now suggesting that Owens could be penalized for not seeking military or government approval before publishing this book.

Nonetheless in the Author’s note Owens claims that he has changed the names of all of the people he mentions in order to protect their identities’ and also that he and co-author Kevin Maurer took necessary steps in the writing of the book to make sure that sensitive information was not leaked. Owens claims that he merely wanted to publish it just to set the record straight about what happened at the compound in Abbotabad that night and he does a brilliant job at doing so.

The book itself runs about 300 pages, but is written in such a fine and captivating manner you might feel like it is shorter. The authors are able to give all of the character enough depth to develop a strong connection between the readers and the characters. Once you pick up this book you will not want to put it down and it is no wonder that it just recently bumped off Fifty Shades of Gray for the top spot on the best seller list after having sold over a million copies (not including digital copies) in its first week of sales. In fact the demand for the book was so high from the presales that the book’s publishing company, Dutton, decided to release the book a week earlier on September 4 instead of September 11.

If readers are interested in reading about the life of a Navy Seal who was part of the elite Seal Team Six (DEVGRU) and who took part in missions like the one that saved the kidnapped Captain Phillips or like the mission that took out Osama Bin Laden then this is a must read. The book itself is written brilliantly and captivates the reader on every page. As for the book collectors out there this is also a must buy; the controversy surrounding the book, the first primary source on the killing of Osama Bin Laden, and the popularity of the book will make this first edition worth a decent amount of money someday.

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