“We may rest assured,” wrote John C. Calhoun, “that those who play false to get power, will play false to retain it.”
Such was the advice of a great, but often maligned, Southern statesman that we should be very leery of politicians who will say anything to get elected. We see this in every election it seems but never take the advice. And what do we usually get? Nothing we were promised.
Last week we saw yet another example of Democrats embellishing their credentials to strengthen their campaigns for the White House. Barack Obama sought to exploit a family member who served during World War II.
“I had an uncle who was one of the, part of the first American troops to go into Auschwitz and liberate the concentration camps,” Obama said in speech in New Mexico. “And the story in our family was, is that when he came home, he just went up into the attic, and he didn’t leave the house for six months.”
Yet we quickly learned that Obama does not have an uncle (it was actually his great uncle) and, for anyone who knows even the basics of history, American forces did not liberate Auschwitz, a camp located in Poland. That horror of horrors was liberated by Soviet troops. American military units never set foot in Poland, or in any Eastern European nation for that matter. Obama’s fib would only be true if his uncle served in the Red Army.
But why would he do this? To make himself look better, to make his family look more patriotic. His great uncle did serve in the U.S. Army and help liberate a camp that was part of the Buchenwald system in central Germany. This is a great story in itself and need not have been embellished. But Auschwitz just sounded better.
Another reason is that Obama has a bit of a problem with Jewish voters. Recent polling indicates that he’s besting McCain in that category but not by as much as recent Democratic nominees. For instance, Kerry beat out Bush with Jewish voters by a margin of 3 to 1, while Obama outranks McCain by just 2 to 1, a significant difference.
The Obama campaign came out quickly the day after the speech, as the lie was caught by talk radio and other conservative media outlets, stating that the candidate “mistakenly” referred to the wrong concentration camp. But in a 2002 anti-war speech, Obama made a similar reference to Auschwitz and another family member. “My grandfather signed up for a war the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, fought in Patton’s army. He saw the dead and dying across the fields of Europe; he heard the stories of fellow troops who first entered Auschwitz and Treblinka. He fought in the name of a larger freedom, part of that arsenal of democracy that triumphed over evil, and he did not fight in vain.”
Unless his grandfather was talking about the great uncle, he could not have spoken to any American troops who entered Auschwitz. Or maybe he knew some soldiers in the Red Army! But we have also learned that his grandfather did not sign up to fight the day after Pearl Harbor but some six months later. Again, this story did not have to be embellished.
You might expect someone with a degree from Columbia and Harvard to know the basics of history! And I’m willing to bet he does; he just simply lied.
It might be argued by Obama’s supporters that these are just little mistakes or even “white lies,” but where I was raised, a lie is a lie. It is still not the truth.
Soon after his Auschwitz remark, Obama made a rather strange statement. “Now obviously, something had really affected him deeply, but at that time there just weren’t the kinds of facilities to help somebody work through that kind of pain. That’s why this idea of making sure that every single #veteran, when they are discharged, are screened for post-traumatic stress disorder and given the mental health services that they need – that’s why it’s so important.”
Is this what he got out of the horrors of Nazi Germany? That we need better mental health facilities? There are lessons to be learned from the Holocaust, namely that government, when it grows to powerful and oppressive, can create hell on earth. But Obama wants government to run the lives of its citizens, and he seeks more and more control for Washington. If he has his way, the feds will be telling you how to live from the time you are born until after you die, when they seize 55 percent of your estate!
Like Hillary’s sniper episode, incidents such as this should tell us a lot about a candidate’s character. If they are so willing to lie about family, friends, and their campaign for power, can we honestly say they wouldn’t lie in office? If we are that naïve, then we deserve what we get!