Before the din of more than a few national leaders meeting in France to commemorate the Paris Massacre, sans Barack Obama, has faded from earshot, the American Chief Executive has decided to again take a powder on a European meeting of world leaders to remember murdered Jews. As reported by the Washington Free Beacon news portal and also the New York Times, both on Jan. 22, 2015, neither Barack Obama or Vice President Joe Biden nor will Secretary of State John Kerry be representing the United States at the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp next Tuesday in Poland.
With the American delegation headed up by someone further down the Obama Administration’s pecking order, Secretary of the Treasury Jacob “Jack” Lew will be the senior American present. Thus far, those confirming attendance includes President François Hollande of France, President Joachim Gauck of Germany and President Heinz Fischer of Austria, as well as the official heads of state to include King Philippe of Belgium, King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark. In the meantime, Croatia, Israel, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, Malta, Slovenia, and Poland have already announced they are sending top-level delegates.
With the number of survivors of Auschwitz in attendance this year expected to be as few as 300 as compared to last year’s 1,500, many believe that next year’s commemoration may number in the mere dozens. Yet with Obama deciding not to send any senior members of his Administration, more eyebrows have been raised questioning his commitment to be the de facto leader of the Free World.
Many questioned the wisdom of Team Obama in deciding to instead host a White House grip and grin with the San Antonio Spurs basketball team vice attending the Paris Massacre march with other world leaders. Another embarrassing Auschwitz-related Obama moment was while campaigning in 2008, then-Senator Obama gave a heartbreaking story of how his uncle “helped liberate” the Nazi concentration camp.
In reality, his uncle was a few hundred miles to the west of Auschwitz. It was the Soviet Red Army that liberated the death camp.