Robert O’Neill, the Navy SEAL Team Six member who allegedly shot Osama bin Laden in a raid three years ago, said the terrorist mastermind “died like a pussy.”
O’Neill made the comments in a previously-unreleased interview with freelance journalist Alex Quade, excerpts of which aired Friday on CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360.”
O’Neill, whose name was first published earlier this week, told Quade how he responds to families of 9/11 victims he speaks to who seek closure for their loved ones’ deaths.
“Osama bin Laden died like a pussy, that’s all I’m telling you,” O’Neill said.
“Just so you know, he died afraid. And he knew we were going to kill him.”
“You can quote me on this bullshit,” O’Neill told Quade.
O’Neill’s identity became a renewed point of interest after Fox News announced late last month that it scored a two-part tell-all interview with the shooter. Fox did not release O’Neill’s name at the time, but did plan to identify him during the interview.
The SEAL says he fired two shots into bin Laden’s forehead during the unit’s May 2011 raid at the al-Qaida leader’s compound in Pakistan.
By coming forward publicly, O’Neill has earned the scorn of some government officials as well as fellow SEALs who say that he is breaking a code of silence by speaking out about the raid. Some fellow SEALs dispute O’Neill’s account of the raid. Unnamed Department of Defense officials have also said O’Neill could be the subject of investigation if he reveals classified information.
In his interview with Quade, O’Neill recounted the days leading up to the raid, saying he and his fellow SEAL team members expected to die or be captured and placed in a Pakistani prison. (RELATED: Fox News Interviews SEAL Who Killed Bin Laden)
O’Neill told Quade that he and the team shared their memories of 9/11 and sought final justification for their deadly mission.
“Well you have to pump yourself up to go die,” O’Neill said.
O’Neill also engaged in what the journalist termed “inter-service rivalry.”
Why did the U.S. government send SEAL Team Six instead of Army’s Delta Force, O’Neill asked.
“Because they wanted him dead.”