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AC360 Preview: Real deal SEALs?
U.S. Navy SEALs await a night mission to capture Iraqi insurgent leaders July 27, 2007 near Fallujah, Iraq. American Special Forces operate throughout Iraq, targeting 'high-value targets' in commando raids, often at night to take advantage of their night vision superiority. (Photo credit: John Moore/Getty Images/File)
May 10th, 2011
08:52 PM ET

AC360 Preview: Real deal SEALs?

Editor's note: Watch the Shipley interview here.

(CNN) – When it comes to the famed U.S. Navy SEALs, if it sounds like a plot from a Steven Seagal movie then it’s probably too good to be true.

As the world heaps praise upon the SEAL team that killed Osama bin Laden, a troubling trend is coming to light: fraudsters trying to pass themselves off as members of the elite band of brothers.

“I’m dealing, since this bin Laden thing, with 40 to 50 of these guys a day,” says retired Navy SEAL Don Shipley, who has made it a priority to ferret out the bogus SEALs. Shipley is being credited with red-flagging Pennsylvania pastor Jim Moats, who in the wake of bin Laden’s death gave an interview to a local newspaper claiming to have been a Navy SEAL in Vietnam. It was a claim that didn’t pass the proverbial smell test for Shipley.

Tune in tonight beginning at 10pm ET to see Shipley explain how he was tipped off to Moats’ tall tale.

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soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Laxmi

    Why do you want to show the graphic animation of the Navy seals shooting at Bin Laden? This clipping be on you tube or facebook in no time and may instigate people who supported him. I am very worried after this guy's death as to what the extremist must be plotting. Your program has a standard and should be responsible too for not displaying such provocative images which we might not think it is. But to some it may be. Love your program and I am a fan of your's.

    May 11, 2011 at 12:31 am |
  2. Michael Kopp

    In school I was always told it was wrong to take someones work and claim it as mine. If i did i would be punished. Why is that not the same if i say the hard work and sacrifice the special operations community or people awarded military medals is theirs when it isn't. Its not free speech its plagiarizing. A school will punish you for plagiarizing about school stuff and the government should punish when someone plagiarizes about government or military stuff. But hey, if the court says its not illegal i better hurry up, join a college and just copy all the smartest kids to get my degree without working for it.

    May 10, 2011 at 11:51 pm |
  3. Chalin McCanny

    iT is wrong to pretend to be anyone in service. My father died because of serving his country. He was not a SEAL, but he grabbed a gun a shot so we could sleep safely. It is an atrocity to dishoner any service, for any reason. We have so many that didnt make it home, but now we have people pretending to have come back. I personaly know a SEAL, they dont talk about anything service related. so there is your truth most SEALS go to thier graves never saying one word about it.

    May 10, 2011 at 11:28 pm |
  4. Jay Morris

    I disagree with your guest and the judge saying its not illegal to lie. It is illegal to impersonate a law enforcement officer and this law should apply to military personnel as well.

    May 10, 2011 at 11:27 pm |
  5. kenneth

    Stolen valor.If its courts say its o.k. to lie about lying about your military service then it should be o.k. to put those so call;ed vets pictures and the valor they stole and the truth as to any if at all any kind of military service and any awards they have gotten or not.im a 20year army retired SSG and a viet nam vet and proud of the awards and metals i have recived while in the army.no matter where they are some vet or friend or family member yell out here is a stolen valor guy dont trust him.they should throw them in jail with military vets and see what they look like after that!

    May 10, 2011 at 10:48 pm |
  6. russ elkins

    When you call someone "reverend" please mention their denomination because many have minimal, if any, credentials. What was this fellow's baclground?

    May 10, 2011 at 10:43 pm |
  7. Larry Batek

    I never served in Vietnam.I received a decoration for marksman.I enlisted July 6, 1976.I was honorably discharged. I still
    require modest medication.I do not have disability from the Veterans Administration.Those who claim to be Navy Seals fraudulently should be put in prison.

    May 10, 2011 at 10:42 pm |