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Code Over Country: The Tragedy and Corruption of SEAL Team Six Spiral-Bound | February 22, 2022

Matthew Cole

★★★★☆+ from 501 to 1,000 ratings

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A hard-hitting exposé of SEAL Team 6, the US military’s best-known brand, that reveals how the Navy SEALs were formed, then sacrificed, in service of American empire.

The Navy SEALs are, in the eyes of many Americans, the ultimate heroes. When they killed Osama Bin Laden in 2011, it was celebrated as a massive victory. Former SEALs rake in cash as leadership consultants for corporations, and young military-bound men dream of serving in their ranks.

But the SEALs have lost their bearings. Investigative journalist Matthew Cole tells the story of the most lauded unit, SEAL Team 6, revealing a troubling pattern of war crimes and the deep moral rot beneath authorized narratives. From their origins in World War II, the SEALs have trained to be specialized killers with short missions. As the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan became the endless War on Terror, their violence spiraled out of control.

Code Over Country details the high-level decisions that unleashed the SEALs’ carnage and the coverups that prevented their crimes from coming to light. It is a necessary and rigorous investigation of the unchecked power of the military—and the harms enacted by and upon soldiers in America’s name.

Publisher: Hachette Book Group
Original Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 368 pages
ISBN-10: 1568589050
Item Weight: 1.3 lbs
Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.5 inches
Customer Reviews: 4 out of 5 stars 501 to 1,000 ratings
“Matthew Cole has produced a searing and unvarnished history of a state-sponsored organized crime syndicate that operates globally with impunity bestowed upon it by the United States government. Since 9/11, Navy SEAL Team 6 has been elevated to legendary status in the media, and its members showered with medals and accolades from presidents, especially in the aftermath of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. Through an even-handed accounting of the failures and successes of SEAL Team 6, from its Cold War origins to the present, Cole has masterfully documented the bloody, dark underbelly of these ‘quiet warriors.’ He exposes the sociopaths and murderers who operate on the tip of the spear of the covert US war machine, along with the military and political leaders who have shielded them from accountability. Code Over Country is a meticulously crafted corrective aimed at dismantling the dishonest mythology that dominates the public understanding of the most elite fighting force in US history.”
 —Jeremy Scahill, New York Times–bestselling author of Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army and Dirty Wars: The World is a Battlefield
Matthew A. Cole is an investigative journalist at The Intercept. He has covered national security since 2005, reporting extensively on the CIA's post-9/11 transformation, on the conflicts in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and on the U.S.'s intelligence operations. He was previously an investigative producer for ABC and NBC News, and has written for GQ, Salon, Details, ESPN, and New York. He has won a Deadline Club Award and has received two Emmy nominations for his reporting. A graduate of Columbia's Graduate School of Journalism, Cole lives in Brooklyn with his family.