Ignoring a slew of serious legal and retaliatory ramifications, Fox News today released what it claims is the name of the former SEAL Team Six member who is set to release a book about his personal involvement in the successful mission to capture or kill Osama bin Laden.
Entitled No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama bin Laden, the book was penned by the author under the pseudonym Mark Owen due to concerns for his safety.
Indeed, a Navy spokesman, Lt. Cmdr. Chris Servello, tells Fox News, "any service member who discloses classified or sensitive information could be subject to prosecution," irrespective of status.
It is unclear how much classified information is contained in the book, as it has not been vetted by either the White House or the Pentagon.
The question of "Owen's" personal security has also been brought up. His publisher, E. P. Dutton was planning to disguised the author's face and voice during television interviews coinciding with the book's September 11th release.
With his name now public, there is some concern that devotees of bin Laden could attempt to harm the author or his family.
As pointed out by Adam Weinstein at Mother Jones, the Fox News reporter who outed the Navy SEAL, Justin Fishel, is the very same reporter who just a year ago reported on the importance of keeping the team members' identities a secret.
Some commenters found particular irony in the fact that this report appears under the banner of Fox News, which repeatedly claims to be more patriotic and troop-friendly than its competitors.
UPDATE: No Easy Day publisher Dutton has released the following statement:
Mark Owen, like every SEAL he has served with, has put his life on the line time and again for his country for more than a decade. Sharing the true story of his personal experience in NO EASY DAY is a courageous act in the face of obvious risks to his personal security. That personal security is the sole reason the book is being published under a pseudonym. We respectfully request that all news organizations and all Americans consider these facts when deciding whether to pursue or publicize his real identity.