Democrat Presidential Candidate Joe Biden claims he was arrested in South Africa in the 1970’s for trying to visit Nelson Mandela while he was in prison.
The only problem is that no one else who was there remembered it.
Apparently, even Biden didn’t remember it. In his 2007 memoir, Biden wrote about visiting South Africa, but made no mention of his “arrest.”
Biden told this story at two events in Nevada and another event in South Carolina.
At the South Carolina event on February 11th, Biden said, “This day, 30 years ago, Nelson Mandela walked out of prison and entered into discussions about apartheid.” Biden went on to say, “I had the great honor of being arrested with our U.N. ambassador on the streets of Soweto trying to get to see him on Robben Island.”
Andrew Young, who was the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations from 1977 to 1979, told the New York Times that he traveled to South Africa with Biden, but did not recall an arrest. “I don’t think there was a situation where congressmen were arrested in South Africa,” Young told the Times.
The New York Times could not find any reference to Biden’s arrest in any of their archives. It appears that Biden has never mentioned this until the 2020 presidential race.
Biden further embellished the story by telling a group in Nevada this week that Mandela came to his office in Washington after he was freed from prison. “He (Mandela) threw his arms around me and said, ‘I want to say thank you.’ I said, ‘What are you thanking me for, Mr. President?’ He said, ‘You tried to see me. You got arrested trying to see me.’ ”
I almost have a tear in my eye.
This isn’t the first time Joe Biden made up a story.
In advance of the New Hampshire primary Biden told a story about a Navy captain who refused to allow him to pin a Silver Star on his chest. The Washington Post reported that Biden told how a 4-star general asked the then-vice-president to travel to the dangerous Kunar Province of Afghanistan. Biden said the captain was awarded the Silver Star for rappelling down a ravine under fire to bring back the body of an American soldier.
When he tried to pin on the Silver Star, Biden claims the captain said, “I don’t want the damn thing! Do not pin it on me, Sir!” Biden concluded the story by saying, “This is the God’s truth. My word as a Biden.”
Well, apparently the word of a Biden isn’t worth much because the entire event as he described it never happened!
Unfortunately, these stories didn’t resonate with New Hampshire or Nevada voters. Bernie Sanders won in both states, with Biden coming in a distant fifth in New Hampshire and second in Nevada.
Time will tell whether or not Biden’s made-up story about Nelson Mandela will have an impact on what political pundits see as his target demographic, black voters in South Carolina.
Image from: thenation.com