What's wrong with this picture?
In the photo accompanying the McClatchy Newspapers article deconstructing the heroics of Medal of Honor winner, Dakota Meyer, President Barack Obama is shown placing the medal around Meyer's neck.
The photo is the only positive note in the article. After an "an exhaustive assessment" of the relevant Marine Corps documents, McClatchy editors decided that parts of the official narrative are "untrue, unsubstantiated or exaggerated." True, "at least seven witnesses attested to [Meyer] performing heroic deeds 'in the face of almost certain death,'" but why let that stand in the way of a good debunking.
The question that begs to be asked, of course, is why the story told about a genuine military hero deserves an "exhaustive assessment" while the claims of the other man in the photo, his president, remain almost fully unexamined three years after his election.
Even Obama-friendly biographer David Remnick concedes that Obama's baseline narrative, as laid down in the 1995 memoir Dreams From My Father, is a "mixture of verifiable fact, recollection, recreation, invention, and artful shaping." And unlike Meyer, Obama was responsible for the production, if not the actual writing, of his own narrative.
The inventions are not minor. Most significantly, Obama fabricated an early family life with his mother, Ann Dunham, and his presumed father, Barack Obama Sr., on which he based his persona and his campaign. In its search for the real story, McClatchy might wants to exhaustively assess where Dunham spent the six months before Obama's birth, why the first confirmed sighting of baby Obama took place in Seattle, not Hawaii, how Dunham got there, and why the Obama camp continues to fictionalize the president's origins.
As a final bit of truth seeking, McClatchy editors might want to exhaustively assess why they and their fellow media travelers have conspired to keep their audiences ignorant on so vital a subject for so many years.
Are they afraid, one wonders, that however inflated his story, Meyer more credibly belongs in that picture than his commander-in-chief?