Biden’s Phony War Story
Looking at the bumper crop of Democrat presidential candidates, you might doubt that any qualifications are required at all. There is at least one: the willingness to cast off any semblance of shame. Joe Biden demonstrates with a phony war story that he keeps repeating on the campaign trail.
At a Friday New Hampshire rally, Biden told the crowd that as vice president he had once been asked to travel to the dangerous Kunar province in Afghanistan to pin the Silver Star on a war hero who had rappelled down a steep wall to retrieve the body of a fallen comrade. Biden said he ignored others who warned him not to go. “We can lose a vice president,” he remembered saying. “We can’t lose many more of these kids.”
In Biden’s telling, as he pinned the medal to the hero’s chest, the tearful Navy captain told Biden that he didn’t deserve the medal because he hadn’t saved his friend in time. “This is the God’s truth,” he told the audience. “My word as a Biden.”
That last sentence is the giveaway that Biden is pulling our leg every time he tells this tale, as he does often, lingering over fictitious details to wring out maximum pathos.
Not even the Washington Post could fail to see through the phoniness:
Biden visited Konar province in 2008 as a U.S. senator, not as vice president. The service member who performed the celebrated rescue that Biden described was a 20-year-old Army specialist, not a much older Navy captain. And that soldier, Kyle J. White, never had a Silver Star, or any other medal, pinned on him by Biden.
White did get a Medal of Honor placed around his neck by Obama 6 years later.
WaPo sums up:
Biden got the time period, the location, the heroic act, the type of medal, the military branch and the rank of the recipient wrong, as well as his own role in the ceremony.
The tale Biden uses to tug on heartstrings is apparently a fictionalized amalgamation of several actual events. It has been evolving for years, as Biden implements variations for improved effect. He has even told two different versions of the story within a single speech.
We could be generous, and attribute his exploitative fabrications to a declining mental state. Or we could conclude that Biden leads the current Democrat pack because, as Lily Tomlin might say, no matter how cynical you become, it’s never enough to keep up with Joe Biden.
On a tip from KirklesWorth.
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