SEAL who killed Bin Laden feels abandoned by US govt
He killed the terrorist leader with three bullets, but former sniper has no pension or health insurance
THE former Navy SEAL who killed terrorist leader Osama bin Laden with "three shots to the forehead" has accused the US government of abandoning him and his family after he left the armed forces.
The navy sniper, who has not been named, has given a graphic description of the moment he came face-to-face with Bin Laden in the terrorist's compound in Pakistan on 2 May, 2011. He told Esquire he was surprised how tall Bin Laden was – "taller than all of us" - and recalled his short beard and "crew cut" hair.
The SEAL, who Esquire refers to as 'The Shooter', said Bin Laden was edging towards an AK-47 assault rifle on a nearby shelf and he realised he had to act. "In that second, I shot him, two times in the forehead," the SEAL said.
"Bap! Bap! The second time as he's going down. He crumpled onto the floor in front of his bed and I hit him again, Bap! Same place."
Despite his bravery, and 16 years of active service as a Navy SEAL, The Shooter is scathing about the US government's treatment of him and his family since he left the armed forces in September last year.
The Esquire article, which is headlined "The Man Who Killed Osama bin Laden … is Screwed", reveals that The Shooter is almost destitute because he has no pension or health insurance.
"I left SEALs on Friday," he told Esquire. "My health care for me and my family stopped at midnight Friday night. They said: ‘You're out of the service, your coverage is over. Thanks for your sixteen years. Go f--- yourself.'"
The Shooter did not receive a pension, he said, because he served less than 20 years in the armed forces. He and his wife live in constant fear of reprisals and have taught their children to hide in the bathtub at the first sign of an attack. Despite the risks, he says the US government has not provided him with any security.
In a written response to the Esquire article, a US Navy spokesman said: "We have no information to corroborate these new assertions."
"We take seriously the safety and security of our people, as well as our responsibility to assist sailors making a transition to civilian life."