Biden Makes Bizarre Claims About A War Veteran

President Biden claimed Friday that his uncle Frank Biden won the Purple Heart for his actions during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II — but there’s no evidence of the award and key details of the story are chronologically impossible.

The 80-year-old commander-in-chief has a habit of sharing false or embellished personal anecdotes to build a connection with his audiences and told his latest apparent tall tale during largely unscripted remarks to veterans in Delaware.

“My dad, when I got elected vice president [in 2008], he said, ‘Joey, Uncle Frank fought in the Battle of the Bulge.’ He was not feeling very well now — not because of the Battle of the Bulge, but he said, ‘and he won the Purple Heart and he never received it. He never got it. Do you think you could help him get it? We will surprise him,’” the president recalled.

“So I got him the Purple Heart. He had won it in the Battle of the Bulge. And I remember he came over the house and I came out and [my father] said, ‘Present it to him, okay?’ We had the family there,” Biden went on.

“I said, ‘Uncle Frank, you’ve won this and I wanted to —’ and he said, ‘I don’t want the damn thing.’ No, I’m serious, he said, ‘I don’t want it.’ I said, ‘What’s the matter, Uncle Frank? You earned it.’ He said, ‘Yeah, but the others died. The others died. I lived. I don’t want it.’”

Biden told the story apparently to make a point about the humility of veterans, but the known facts indicate it’s not true.

Biden’s father, Joseph R. Biden Sr., died in September 2002 — more than six years before his son was elected vice president. Frank Biden, Joe Sr.’s brother, died in 1999.

The White House did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment. The Defense Department referred questions to the Army — the military branch in which Frank Biden served — but the Army did not immediately respond.

Frank Biden’s tombstone does not identify him as a Purple Heart honoree, nor does his obituary. A partial registry of known Purple Heart recipients also doesn’t note anyone by that name receiving the award, though that database is not comprehensive.

The Post’s librarians could not locate prior references to Frank Biden receiving the Purple Heart, which recognizes wounded and killed soldiers, in the Nexis archive and the repository of Joe Biden’s public statements also doesn’t contain prior references.

The tale involving Biden’s uncle is similar to another emotionally impactful but false story told by then-presidential candidate Joe Biden in 2019 — this one involving a Navy captain supposedly refusing to accept a Silver Star for his heroism in Afghanistan. A Washington Post fact check from the time said Biden “jumbled elements of at least three actual events into one story of bravery, compassion, and regret that never happened.”

Biden made other dubious remarks Friday, including telling veterans that “twice as president” he had been “in and out of Afghanistan and Iraq and those areas” — despite never visiting Afghanistan and Iraq as president and getting no closer than the Palestinian city of Bethlehem, almost 300 miles from the Iraqi border.

Biden is the oldest-ever US president and his mental acuity frequently is a matter of public debate — particularly after he asked “Where’s Jackie?” as he searched for the late Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) in September, despite publicly mourning her death and even calling her family to offer his condolences in August. Multiple times this year, Biden has incorrectly said that his son Beau Biden died in Iraq.

But Biden also has a decades-long habit of stretching the truth and ended his first presidential campaign in 1987 due to a scandal involving plagiarism of speeches and a law school paper

Then-Senator Biden infamously borrowed British politician Neil Kinnock’s family history — with Biden changing geographic details to falsely claim in speeches that “my ancestors … worked in the coal mines of Northeast Pennsylvania and would come up after 12 hours and play football for four hours.” Unlike Kinnock, who had used the line to describe his own family in Wales, Biden’s ancestors did not mine coal.

Biden also falsely claimed in 1987 that he “graduated with three degrees from college,” was named “the outstanding student in the political science department,” “went to law school on a full academic scholarship — the only one in my class to have a full academic scholarship” and ”ended up in the top half” of his class. None of those claims were true. 

Since becoming president, Biden has shared a number of false or embellished stories in an apparent attempt to connect with his audiences.

In October, Biden dubiously claimed that “I was sort of raised in the Puerto Rican community at home, politically” while visiting the US territory, despite the fact that there was only an extremely small Puerto Rican community in Delaware when he launched his career.

At a fire-safety event the same month, Biden said firefighters nearly died extinguishing a blaze in his kitchen in 2004, prompting the local fire department to describe the fire as relatively “insignificant” for trained professionals.

Biden admitted in September to visiting South African President Cyril Ramaphosa that “I wasn’t arrested” trying to visit Nelson Mandela during the Apartheid era, despite saying so at least three times in 2020. But Biden proceeded to say that “I got stopped, prevented from moving” during a congressional trip to the small country Lesotho near South Africa — despite a fellow traveler, former Rep. Don Bonker (D-Wash.), telling the Washington Post in 2020 that he had “no recollection at all” of that version of the story either.

In May, Biden said at the Naval Academy’s graduation ceremony that he was appointed to the military school in 1965 by the late Sen. J. Caleb Boggs (R-Del.). A search of Boggs’ archives failed to turn up evidence of the appointment. The date also doesn’t match up with Biden’s college years and Biden’s request for Vietnam War draft deferrals cast further doubt on the account.

In January, Biden told students at historically black colleges in Atlanta that he was arrested during civil rights protests — for which there is no evidence.

Biden in September 2021 told Jewish leaders that he remembered “spending time at” and “going to” the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh after the 2018 mass murder of 11 people in the worst anti-Jewish attack in US history. The synagogue said he never visited and the White House later said he was thinking about a 2019 phone call to the synagogue’s rabbi.

Also last September, Biden told an Idaho audience that his “first job offer” came from local lumber and wood products business Boise Cascade. The company said it was news to them and Biden had not previously described an interest in moving to the state.

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