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The US Navy SEAL involved in the killing of Osama bin Laden told Esquire magazine that prior to using Demon Hunter recordings, the commandoes used Metallica music to pull information out of Iraqi prisoners.
“When we first started the war in Iraq we were using Metallica music to soften people up before we interrogated them,” the spokesperson said.
However after the band, who is totally opposed to violence, asked the US military to stop using their music at interrogations, the commanders chose Demon Hunter.
“Demon Hunter said, ‘We’re all about promoting what you do.’ They sent us CDs and patches. I wore my Demon Hunter patch on every mission – I wore it when I blasted Bin Laden,” the Navy SEAL added.
“Part of me is proud they chose Metallica, and then part of me is bummed about it. We’ve got nothing to do with this and we’re trying to be apolitical as possible – I think politics and music, at least for us, don’t mix," Metallica front man James Hetfield said in 2008 commenting on the news that US military used the band’s music for the interrogation of Guantanamo prisoners.
"As you can imagine, our inboxes and phones (and those of our representatives) have been flooded with messages asking us how we feel about the Esquire article on the raid that brought Osama Bin Laden to justice that began circulating yesterday. Specifically, the person identified in the story as 'The Shooter' said that Seal Team 6 wore the DEMON HUNTER emblem on their uniforms and 'I wore it when I blasted Bin Laden.'
"Over the years, we have been overwhelmed by the personal (and unofficial) emails and letters we've received from members of the U.S. military. We have been humbled and honored by the troops who've told us our music has offered them some comfort while overseas, while missing loved ones, while doing what they do best in order to keep America safe and protect the freedoms we enjoy. We've met many servicemen and women at our shows and they've shared their stories with us in person, as well. We wrote 'The Soldier's Song' back in 2005 to pay tribute to these folks who've reached out to us. We included one such veteran among the DEMON HUNTER fans we profiled in our documentary film, '45 Days'
"As for the talk about enhanced interrogation techniques that has sprung up in the media in the last 24 hours surrounding this story, we feel that it is an unnecessary distraction. It's been widely reported for years that heavy metal music has sometimes been used in these situations. We have no specific knowledge of our music being used for this, nor have we ever volunteered it to be used as such, nor are we commenting on it beyond that. The debate about enhanced interrogation techniques is for politicians, military intelligence, pundits and others of the like to have.
The German-language television network 3SAT recently conducted an interview with METALLICA guitarist/vocalist James Hetfield about the band's new album, "Death Magnetic", the "Some Kind of Monster" movie and the use of METALLICA's music to torture Guantanamo Bay, Cuba prisoners. "Part of me is proud is because they chose METALLICA," Hetfield said about the reports that the band's song "Enter Sandman" was used during the interrogation of Mohammed al-Qahtani — known as the 20th hijacker on Sept. 11 — and that listening to the track brought al-Qahtani to tears "because he thought he was hearing the sound of Satan." James added, "It's strong; it's music that's powerful. It represents something that they don't like — maybe freedom, aggression… I don't know… freedom of speech. And then part of me is kind of bummed about it that people worry about us being attached to some political statement because of that. We've got nothing to do with this and we're trying to be as apolitical as possible, 'cause I think politics and music, at least for us, don't mix. It separates people, [and] we wanna bring people together. So, so be it. I can't say 'Stop.' I can't say 'Do it.' It is just a thing — it's not good or bad."