Sean Spicer’s Holocaust gaffe confirms how Trump's America normalises Hitler

DailyBiteApr 12, 2017 | 14:42

Sean Spicer’s Holocaust gaffe confirms how Trump's America normalises Hitler

Whitewashing past crimes is one of the surest ways to perpetuate the present ones, often in the name of justice. When White House press secretary Sean Spicer had to explain President Donald Trump’s newfound position on Syria, particularly the airstrike last week on Syria’s Al Shayrat airbase, his excuse was to hide behind the imagined humanism of none other than 20th century’s biggest villain, Adolf Hitler.


Comparing the Nazi leader who ordered execution of six million Jews in what’s the most painful and unforgivable chapter of the last century, with Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, the latest enemy of the Trump administration, Spicer said: “We didn’t use chemical weapons in World War II. You had someone as despicable as Hitler who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons.”

Spicer added: “I think when you come to sarin gas, he was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing.”

He went on to say: “There was not in the – he brought them to the Holocaust centres – I understand that. But I’m saying in the way that Assad used them, where he went into towns, dropped them into the middle of towns.”

Later, Spicer, after being called out on this grave and unpardonable error, making light of the genocide on a patently false claim, expressed rhetorical contrition. “Thank you, I appreciate the clarification. That was not the intent.”


There it was, in full ignominious glory, the utter ignorance of the current White House administration, which could be very well the most tone-deaf in the 241 years of the USA’s existence.

Not only was Spicer blatantly downplaying Adolf Hitler’s terrible legacy, he also was lying – or at least was saying misguided/ignorant comments, which is just as bad – about the Fuhrer’s reliance on poisonous gases such as Zyklon B. Hitler’s Nazi army, particularly the dreaded SS brigade that oversaw the concentration camps and gas chambers at Auschwitz, killed six million Jews, tens of thousands of Gypsies, gays, communist dissidents, and intellectuals during the Holocaust, as it came to be known.

If in Spicer’s deluded mind, Zyklon B doesn’t count as a chemical weapon, then it shows his and his president’s utter insensitivity and indeed absolute ignorance of history. Sarin gas is only the latest in a long line of biochemical weaponry that have been developed in the West, and has found its way in the conflict-torn Middle East, sold in the black market of arms and ammunitions.

Spicer made a number of gaffes. First, and the most obvious one, he said and implied that Hitler was a nicer guy than Bashar al-Assad, because the latter used, allegedly, sarin gas “on his own people”. Notwithstanding that the direct use of sarin and other gases by Assad has perhaps killed about 1,500 people so far, not even a tiny drop in the ocean when compared to the six million that Hitler gassed to death.


Secondly, Spicer said that Hitler didn’t use gas on his own people, thereby taking out German Jews from the history of Germany, and taking anti-Semitism to a brand new level. It must be remembered that during the International Holocaust Memorial Day, the White House note obliterated any mention of Jews or anti-Semitism as a historical issue, and was widely panned for that error as well.

Despite chumming up with Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu and his hawkish anti-Arab policies, including on Syria, the Trump’s administration utter and absolute lack of historical knowledge and wisdom is betrayed at every point.

Thirdly, Spicer’s gaffe came on the first day of Passover, the Jewish holiday to commemorate the liberation of Jewish people from slavery in Egypt. Indeed #HappyPassover trended ironically on Twitter, as Jews worldwide didn’t know how to react to this ridiculously bungling White House administration.

This inability and indeed indifference to history’s painful reminders of the excesses of war and warmongering is exactly what makes many compare the current Trump administration to Nazi Germany under Hitler. It’s little wonder that neo-Nazi cult of white supremacism is alive and kicking in Trump’s America, tearing apart the constitutionally secular social fabric of the United States.

Trump’s Syrian airstrike has little to do with being moved by the children who were killed or injured in the gas attack. It has everything to do with opening up another front of the insatiable beast called war, a machine which must be kept churning for profits to all kinds of parties with vested interests.

Reports that Trump himself benefitted from the use of Tomahawk missiles on Syria’s Al Shayrat airbase because he owns stocks in the company that manufactures Tomahawks, have drawn attention to how blatant war-profiteering would be a hallmark of the Trump administration.

That Spicer – in his flustered bluster and arrogant ignorance – is becoming a mini-Trump himself, blundering his way through the press briefings and turning them into a grotesque caricature of political black comedy, is telling. But we wonder what’s the price that would be paid by the world to entertain such bloodthirsty blockheads in the most powerful elected office?

Last updated: April 12, 2017 | 14:42
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