Sunday 17 November 2019

Spicer faces up to new fury after apologising over Hitler comments

White House press secretary Sean Spicer. Photo: AP
White House press secretary Sean Spicer. Photo: AP

Sean Spicer has had to apologise for his comments comparing Syrian President Bashar Assad to Hitler after he claimed Nazi Germany "didn't use chemical weapons".

But his apology has backfired, causing angry comments from many people, who asked for him to be fired.

The press secretary said in his apology: "In no way was I trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the Holocaust, however, I was trying to draw a contrast of the tactic of using airplanes to drop chemical weapons on innocent people."

Stephen Pollard, the editor of the 'Jewish Chronicle', pointed out: "This isn't merely worse than original imbecilic comments.

"It's so shocking as to render Spicer unfit to continue. Jews were not 'innocent'?"

The Anne Frank Centre also condemned his original comments, saying it was shocking they were made "on Passover, no less".

The press secretary originally said: "We didn't use chemical weapons in World War II. You had someone as despicable as Hitler who didn't descend to using chemical weapons.

"So the question is, if you're Russia, ask yourself, 'is this a country, is this a regime you want to align yourself with?'

"You have signed on to international agreements. At what point do they realise they are getting on the wrong side of history in a really bad way? This is not a team you want to be on."

Mr Spicer was asked for a clarification of his comments moments later at his daily press briefing at the White House. He then said: "I think when it comes to sarin gas he [Hitler] was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing."

Irish Independent

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