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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke July 8, 2022

No, Biden didn’t put the Medal of Honor around a Vietnam War veteran’s neck backward

If Your Time is short

  • A grainy video of Joe Biden placing a medal on a Vietnam War veteran is leading some people to claim that he put it on backward. He didn’t, and clear footage from news outlets proves it. 

On July 5, Spc. Dwight Birdwell received a Medal of Honor at the White House for his actions in Vietnam in January 1968. President Joe Biden placed the medal around his neck. And some social media users are sharing a grainy video of this moment as evidence of cognitive decline. 

"Biden puts medal on backwards," one Facebook post says. "Just imagine if Trump had done this." 

This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.)

Featured Fact-check

In the clip that’s being shared, the gold star medal that hangs from the blue ribbon that Biden affixed around Birdwell’s neck isn’t visible. But in other footage, and photos, it is. 


You can see someone handing the medal to Biden and then Biden appropriately placing it around Birdwell’s neck in this clip that was shared live on YouTube by PBS NewsHour. The medal is also visible in this Getty Images photo as Biden secures the medal on Birdwell. 

We rate claims that he put the medal on Birdwell backwards Pants on Fire!


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No, Biden didn’t put the Medal of Honor around a Vietnam War veteran’s neck backward

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