General Question

SergeantQueen's avatar

What do you think about this man successfully imitating a military official? Should more be done to prevent this kind of security breach?

Asked by SergeantQueen (11751points) February 12th, 2018

This man posed as an Army Lt General, went into a classified briefing and somehow managed to establish enough credibility to land a helicopter at the SAS headquarters. He is facing the possibility of 3 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

How was he able to do that if he wasn’t a real LT General?
It was at a software company in Cary, North Carolina, and it doesn’t seem like the type of place to just have a LT general show up randomly and want to land a helicopter, sooo why didn’t anyone question it?

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8 Answers

ragingloli's avatar

Because your society has been conditioned to not question people in the military, including questioning whether or not they actually are who they claim to be.

stanleybmanly's avatar

The army is allowed 230 lieutenant generals, and fraud is a fact of life. Anyone can buy a uniform. And you should know better than the rest of us that the uniform gets your salute as well as your blind obedience. Fortunately, it’s the sort of fraud that can’t persist for long.

elbanditoroso's avatar

I have to wonder about how they other people at the meeting/briefing reacted. Did any of them call him out? Did anyone question who he was or why he was there?

I think that we are not getting the full story here.

flutherother's avatar

It’s not the first time Desgroux has done this. Earlier in 2017, he chartered a helicopter to Jacksonville – again wearing an Army uniform – and had the pilot land at a KOA Kampground so he could meet briefly with a woman there. On that trip Desgroux stated his desire to land a helicopter on an aircraft carrier in Norfolk. He also described himself as a pilot who had flown Apache helicopters during the Gulf War.

SergeantQueen's avatar

@stanleybmanly You are right. I got a lot of thank yous and offers of free stuff when I was in my Civil Air Patrol uniform, even though that’s not real military. And like what @ragingloli kind of said, lots of people don’t question it and are also not “educated” for lack of a better word on how to tell a real serviceperson from a fake or from a volunteer.

CWOTUS's avatar

Who’s checking the credentials of all of the others at the security briefing? How is validity established? For all we know – and all we do know is what we’re told – he could have been the only person who belonged there, and the others were all imposters.

seawulf575's avatar

I guess if you look and act the part, most people will just accept it.

Pandora's avatar

This is what blind obedience looks like. With all the checks there are there is nothing more intimidating to military men than a general. The military does it to themselves. They teach their soldiers not to question any order from a commanding officer. They aren’t paid to think. This leaves them vulnerable to these kind of things and makes them vulnerable to anyone actually wishing to do them harm. Imagine he had decided to take a military helicopter and crashed it someplace where (because he was in classified meetings) it could do the nation the most harm. Or that he could get vital troop information and sell it to the enemy.

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