Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Every right-wing blogger in the English-speaking world has now mocked Barack Obama for claiming that his uncle helped liberate Auschwitz as a member of Patton's Third Army. Har har har! That's a complete rewrite of World War II history! Patton's Third Army didn't liberate Auschwitz! The Red Russkies liberate Auschwitz! Maybe Obama's uncle was a commie! Har har har!

No, Patton's Third Army didn't liberate Auschwitz.

Patton's Third Army liberated Buchenwald.

I guess that gaffe makes Obama unfit to be president.

A few hours ago, I posted the above, hastily, in response to right-wingers' charges that Barack Obama rewrote history in his Memorial Day speech. I had my facts wrong (I was confusing Obama's grandfather, who served with Patton's Third Army but apparently was not part of the liberation of Buchenwald, and Obama's uncle).

But it looks as if the right-wingers who attacked Obama were -- surprise! -- making a mountain out of a molehill (and, in fact, a part of Buchenwald was what Obama was referring to).

Politico's Ben Smith has started to clear the matter up:

Earlier, the Republican National Committee pounced on Obama's improbable statement that an uncle had served in the unit that liberated Auschwitz.

In fact, campaign spokesman Bill Burton says, his great uncle was a member of the 89th Infantry Division that liberated the Ohrduf camp, part of Buchenwald and, according to the Holocaust Museum, the first concentration camp liberated by U.S. troops.

The soldier in question, Burton said, is Obama's grandmother's brother, who's still alive....

THIS PART OF MY ORIGINAL POST STILL STANDS UP: By the way, I think it's safe to say that every single right-wing blogger who's slammed Obama for this worships Ronald Reagan, who claimed he had photographed the Nazi death camps even though he was never overseas during the war.

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