Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Did that guy just falsely claim to be a SEAL??? Really??? or: How to not be called a jackass...

Given all of the recent press regarding the Navy's Special Warfare Development Group (AKA Seal Team Six), I saw this coming and, as it is a subject near and dear to my heart, I felt I needed to post.

The early 1990s was an interesting period in America. After two decades of simmering anti-military sentiment following Viet Nam (with a Desert One chaser), America switched overnight to being overly (pseudo-)patriotic and very pro-military. Much of this was a result of the quick success of Desert Storm, as the US defeated a technically and tactically inept force... oh, and one that was outnumbered 2-to-1...

I have presented to gun collectors on the effects of Desert Storm regarding the arms industry and how brown, wood guns are being replaced by black, polymer guns. This was, in part, the result of America's newfound familiarity with the military after following the war on CNN. Reports of con artists claiming military association began to occur. Unfortunately, some of these con men were regular people - veterans who wanted to get a little more street cred, politicians who couldn't shut up, and grandpas who wanted their grandkids to think they were special. As an example, I offer Veteran's Phony War Stories...


Around this same time, several books and an atrocious film came out about Navy SEALs. Thankfully, after Navy Seals was released in 1990, Kevin Dockery's book Seals in Action came out. Fitting nicely into the history told by Kevin Dockery, Richard Marcinko's Rogue Warrior came out in 1992. However, the three together made for the trifecta of "How to pretend you are a SEAL." Madness and douchebaggery ensued...

Oddly enough, about this time, I spent most of a year at Little Creek Naval Amphibious Base in Norfolk, Virginia. While I saw SEALs and some friends played hostage for some SEAL training, I was there to drink and play bass guitar...

Jump forward twenty years and it is again rearing its head. A preacher claiming to be a SEAL (and here and here) and those who are working to uncover folks like him are showing up in the news.

Unfortunately, it doesn't matter where you live. We have our own impersonator here. I heard about him from an acquaintance. He sounded nice enough, but the the stories got, well... odd... For one thing, he and his tales involved 5 of the 7 bullet points on this list

I did the right thing. I asked the folks at the POW Network (amateur webpage, professional service!) and I had my answer within 24 hours. The response described the source used to perform the research and succinctly stated that "no one by the name of CXXXX QXXXX graduated from the US Navy BUD/S course." Question asked, question answered.


I'd call him on it, but he is of little consequence. If he tries to get any public kudos or recognition out of it, however...

And, by the way, I giggle like a schoolgirl everytime I see Navy Seals on TV...
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