Diary

Joe Biden's fanciful war stories

Senator Joe Biden has already been called out for his misleading claim that his helicopter was “forced down” by Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan earlier this year.

It turns out that Biden has made up such war stories before. I recently bought Promises to Keep, Biden’s awful auto-hagiography. It’s got more examples of Biden playing hero by getting shot at–or so he imagines:

Page 324:

I was seated up in the cockpit near enough to see the night-vision goggles the pilots wore, and my staff guys–along with Tom Friedman–were strapped into red canvas jump seats. The airmen were moving in what seemed like perfectly controlled panic.

“What’s going on?” Puneet asked out loud.

As we began our taxi down the runway with the cargo doors still open, somebody up by me answered him: “There’s tracer fire just beyond the runway.”

“What are we going to do?” Puneet said.

“Get the hell out of here!”

Er… yeah.

And there’s more:

Pages 357-8:

After all those trips into and out of the Balkans and then Iraq, I was used to the corkscrew takeoffs and landings. But about a minute into the flight there was a huge flash of white light outside the window that briefly illuminated the cabin. Instantly the plane went almost completely vertical, or so it seemed, and then into a sharp drop, the engines whining and straining. Then we leveled off. In the dark Tony grabbed my arm and yelled in my ear: “What the heck was that?”

“I don’t know,” I said. “Maybe it’s the military’s idea of in-flight entertainment.”

A little while later, the copilot came down from the cockpit: “Sorry about the commotion. The surface-to-air-missile warning system was triggered and we had to go evasive.”

“So, did someone take a shot at us?” I asked.

“We don’t know for sure–but it happens.”

(emphasis mine)

It could have happened, Senator Biden seems to think, therefore it must have happened.

Hillary was pilloried for the Tuzla Dash, and it may even have cost her the Democratic nomination at a moment when she was making a late surge.

But for Biden, such stories seem to be a staple.