Tell-All Book Stirs Up Government Trouble
Relentless Strike: The Secret History of Joint Special Operations Command, authored by Sean Naylor, is the book no one (read: the government) wants to see published. In fact, the military’s U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM—because we all know the government loves its acronyms) is in such a tizzy that it has issued warning letters to Special Forces operators in anticipation of the book’s Tuesday release, reports The Hill.
The letters, which are being sent to everyone whose names appear in the book, caution the recipients that upon release of Relentless Strike, they may be contacted by media or “come under public scrutiny." In addition, those Special Forces operators involved are reminded not to speak on the book’s content in any context.
Naylor himself has been told of the government’s panic over Relentless Strike, with one individual informing him that Fort Bragg—headquarters for the U.S. Army’s Special Operations Forces—“is going ape shit over your book.”
Although Naylor claims no classified documents or information passed through his hands during the writing process, his book has still caught the eye of top Pentagon leadership. Such parties are struggling to withhold special operation forces information from the public, even in a day and age when anyone and everyone in the sector is eager to spill the beans.
Relentless Strike focuses on the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), which is a subdivision of USSOCOM comprised of Navy SEALs, Delta Force, and other special operators who deploy the most classified missions, including the 2011 raid that ended in Osama bin Laden’s death.
Even in the face of government scrutiny, Naylor stands by his written words, insisting that appropriate measures have been taken to protect the identities of his sources, and that he would never put anyone’s lives at risk. He has also said that USSOCOM shouldn’t be surprised by the release of Relentless Strike, because he contacted command years before and offered them a chance to lend their voice to the narrative. Unsurprisingly, the government “politely declined” the opportunity, and in Naylor’s words, “painted themselves into a corner.”
What do you think of sensitive government secrets being leaked in a tell-all book? Do we as the public have a right to know, or should some things remain a mystery?
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