Since the beginning of the Donald Trump presidency, White House spokesman Sean Spicer had inserted his foot into his mouth more times than you could count. However, when he slipped up and stated that Adolph Hitler had never used chemical weapons, he drew a bit more attention than he had intended.
During the press conference on Tuesday, Spicer was speaking about Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and compared him to Hitler. According to him, during World War II, Hitler never used chemicals on his own people. Then, on Wednesday, he took to the mainstream media outlets with apology after apology.
He stated that he felt that he had “let the president down” with his comment. “I made a mistake. There’s no other way to say it. I got into a topic that I shouldn’t have and I screwed up,” Spicer said in a discussion Wednesday morning with MSNBC’s Greta Van Susteren at the Newseum in Washington.
“I hope people understand that we all make mistakes. I hope that I show that I understand that I did that.”
He then went on CNN and explained, “I was obviously trying to make a point about the heinous acts that Assad had made against his own people last week, using chemical weapons and gas. Frankly, I mistakenly made an inappropriate and insensitive reference to the Holocaust, for which there is no comparison,” Spicer said. “And for that, I apologize. It was a mistake to do that.”
He further elaborated by stating that he was “aware” of gas chambers and their use during the Holocaust and that he should have “stayed focused” on Assad, and hoped that people would forgive him for his mistake.
Of course, Hitler didn’t use chemical weapons on the battlefield, however, he did use them to murder Jewish people that he held captive in concentration camps.
Earlier: Spicer claims that even someone “as despicable as Hitler” didn’t use chemical weapons https://t.co/5BSu9nzn5W
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) April 11, 2017
“You had someone who was despicable as Hitler who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons,” Spicer said during the briefing. “So you have to, if you are Russia, ask yourself is this a country and a regime that you want to align yourself with.”
Shortly after making his comment, the media went wild, and began airing clips of the spokesman’s errant claim.
Spicer says that “even Hitler” did not use chemical weapons, apparently forgetting gas chambers.
— Alan Rappeport (@arappeport) April 11, 2017
Unfortunately, this is not the first time that Spicer has made false claims while referencing an alleged foreign policy threat. In the past, he has referenced not one, but two fabricated terrorist attacks. And while he is quick to apologize, words can be quite powerful. Furthermore, having a spokesperson who is able to control the words that leave their mouth would seem to be a prerequisite for the position.