osama bin laden
© AP Photo / Mazhar Ali Khan
Osama bin Laden in 1998 file photo from his hideout in Afghanistan.
The retired US Navy SEAL credited with the assassination of al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden is speaking out after US President Donald Trump amplified a baseless conspiracy theory suggesting that former US President Barack Obama's administration actually staged a fake operation, complete with a bin Laden body double.

"Very brave men said goodby to their kids to go kill Osama bin Laden. We were given the order by President Obama. It was not a body double," Robert O'Neill, the former Navy SEAL who allegedly killed bin Laden in a 2011 raid, tweeted on Tuesday. "Thank you Mr. President. Happy birthday @USNavy."

"S**t. I just found out that I killed Osama bin Johnson. Drinks are on me, I guess..." he added in a tweet later that day.

Seal Team Six Navy Seal Rob O'Neill
© Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore
Former Seal Team Six Navy Seal Rob O'Neill speaking at the 2018 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland.
O'Neill's comments followed the US president's Tuesday decision to retweet a post from a since-deleted account with reported ties to QAnon, the pro-Trump conspiracy theory movement.


Trump previously attacked Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden regarding the 2011 raid by SEAL Team 6.

"He opposed the mission to take out Osama bin Laden," Trump said of his political rival on September 17.

"If it were up to Joe, bin Laden and [Iranian Maj. Gen. Qasem] Soleimani would still be alive, ISIS [Daesh] would be still on the rampage, and China would now be the dominant power in the world - not America."

O'Neill continued to subtweet Trump and his Republican supporters in a series of tweets issued on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Despite being an alleged war hero, the former Navy SEAL has received a lot of negative press in recent years for his 2016 DUI arrest, which resulted in lessened charges, and alleged belligerent behavior on a flight in 2018.

O'Neill was most recently banned from Delta Air Lines planes after he posted a picture of himself not wearing a mask during a flight, the Associated Press reported


"Thank God it wasn't @Delta flying us in when we killed bin Laden... we weren't wearing masks..." he said in a later tweet.

"Part of every customer's commitment prior to traveling on Delta is the requirement to acknowledge our updated travel policies, which includes wearing a mask," the airline said in a statement, as reported by AP. "Failure to comply with our mask-wearing mandate can result in losing the ability to fly Delta in the future."