Obama's Great Uncle on the president's trip to Buchenwald

The truism friends may come and go but family is forever can often mean that family members, especially older ones, who have known you--intimately--since you were a kid sometimes understand you better, see through you more and aren't afraid to bluntly say things that friends never would.  For your own good of course.
And so upon hearing that his great nephew, the grandson of his sister, President Barack Obama (D) was planning to visit the notorious death camp Buchenwald as part of his trip to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the Normandy D-Day landings towards the end of World War ll, Charles Payne said in the German magazine Der Spiegel, as reported in the British paper The Telegraph in an article by Alex Spillius: 

Asked if his great nephew was following in his footsteps, which the White House has suggested as a reason for the trip, Mr Payne told the German magazine Der Spiegel: "I don't buy that. This is a trip that he chose, not because of me I'm sure, but for political reasons."


 [H]e added: "Perhaps his visit also has something to do with improving his standing with Angela Merkel. She gave him a hard time during his campaign and also afterwards."

Although the Columbia University, Harvard Law School educated president is amazingly seriously history challenged  that didn't stop him from authoritatively pronouncing on history and exploiting his family's history on the campaign trail when necessary.

The first time they discussed his participation in the war was when Mr Obama wrongly said during the campaign that Mr Payne had "liberated" Auschwitz. Opponents swiftly pointed out that had been done by the Red Army.

"He couldn't have gotten it from me since we had never talked about this particular episode in the war," he said. "My sister and her husband were both great storytellers and sometimes made up the details to go along with it. They told him about my deployment with the 89th Infantry Division and apparently they mixed up a few details."

Mr Obama soon called Mr Payne to check the details of his war experience, he said. "He wanted to know where this camp was that I had helped liberate. I told him that it was Ohrdruf and that it was a subcamp of the Buchenwald concentration camp. I described a little bit of what I had seen," he said.

Auschwitz and Buchenwald were equally evil places; hundreds of hundreds of thousands, mainly Jews, were slaughtered at both.

Payne has not been invited to accompany the president on his trip to Europe but said he would accept if the offer was made.

He should be on the trip to teach his great nephew a few things his educated advisers and his own excellent education lacked.