How to Catch a Fake Veteran
Since there are people out there willing to lie about their military service for personal and political gain, it is the patriotic duty of people who support the troops to find the frauds and ridicule them. Unlike lying about your military service, ridicule is protected speech, even when extreme. To help you find and flush these miscreants, there are a few simple steps you can take.
1. Ask Direct Questions. When were you there? What unit were you with? Who was with you? Where were you at? Why did you take those obviously illegal orders? How many times did this happen? Were the goats consenting adults? These are the sorts of things that imposters give vague and implausible answers to that can be checked afterwards.
2. Record All Answers. If they are speaking in public or posting their comments online, they have no expectation of privacy. When you have them recorded, share the media online so everybody can review their statements, not just the gullible few. It will come back to haunt them in a manner reminiscent of Genghis Khan…
3. Keep Them Talking. The longer they talk the further off the rails they go. Fake veterans make stuff up as they go along, it is central to their pathology. Eventually they will blather something utterly irreconcilable with reality and you can nail them. This part is hard because it involves a delayed gratification in exchange for immediate boredom and tripe. Try to bear up like a soldier, because they usually aren't.
4. Use Research Tools. The Internet is a wonderful thing if you want to expose fraud. Calculators and spreadsheets help a lot, too. Frauds rarely do the math. Calendars with timelines are exceptionally helpful, but relatively rare online. Compare uniform regulations with photos provided by the frauds. Nobody in the US armed forces is authorized to wear leopard-skin accessories, for instance.
5. Learn About the Military. The best way to discover a fraud is to know more about the subject than they do. The best way to do this is to spend some time in military service, but if that is not available to you, do some reading. CentCom (Central Command)
has an excellent web site, and they are covering many of the most lied about places in the world right now.
The US military is currently the most trusted group in the country, and a lot of unscrupulous people are trading on that. Anytime someone identifies themselves as a veteran when speaking publicly, they are borrowing authority from the sweat and blood of a lot of good people, many of whom will never get to speak for themselves again. We owe it to the real veterans to be skeptical of outrageous claims and denounce fraud far and wide.
Patrick S Lasswell is a veteran, as was his father and a grandfather before that.