After several days of boiling controversy, including calls for an apology from Israeli leaders, CNN’s Christiane Amanpour is walking back her inflammatory comment comparing President Donald Trump’s administration to the Nazi massacre that ultimately began the Holocaust.
On Monday night, Amanpour said on her CNN International program that she was should not have “juxtaposed” the infamous Kristallnacht horror, which resulted in the death of nearly 100 Jewish people and the arrest of some 30,000 Jewish men who were then placed in concentration camps, and Trump’s presidency.
“I shouldn’t have juxtaposed the two thoughts,” she said, according to the Washington Examiner. “Hitler and his evil stand alone, of course, in history. I regret any pain my statement may have caused.”
Amanpour said she drew the comparison as she was seeking to reflect on the 82nd anniversary of the so-called “Night of Broken Glass.” She accurately described the infamous November 1938 night as the “event that began the horrors of the Holocaust.”
The CNN anchor’s comments were immediately condemned. Ross Dyer, a British sports commentator, rebuked Amanpour, writing, “As someone who lost many ancestors in the Shoah [Holocaust], I find this comparison to be utterly false and highly offensive. If anything, it is the Democratic Party [and] MSM who have pursued the policy of a 21st century Kristallnacht vs. our freedoms [and] values. Look in the mirror, Amanpour.”
Media Research Center Vice President Dan Gainer called her words “disgusting.”
“Lowest of low,” added American actor Matthew Davis. “They believe their audience is stupid, and ya half wonder if they’re right. This type of egregious demagoguery should be illegal and CNN should retract this garbage.”
Israel Minister of Diaspora Affairs Omer Yankelevich slammed Amanpour for attempting to make “cheap headlines” with her comparison.
“Using the memory of the Holocaust for cheap headlines or a political agenda is concerning and distorts the historical and moral truth,” Yankelevich said, noting CNN “should be a partner in the global effort to fight anti-Semitism and not fuel the fire.”
“The foolish comparison Amanpour made between Kristallnacht and Trump must bring about her immediate dismissal from CNN,” commented Danny Dayan, former Israeli Consul-General in New York. “There is no immunity for Holocaust deniers.”
What did she say?
On Thursday, Amanpour compared Trump’s administration to Kristallnacht.
“This week 82 years ago, Kristallnacht happened,” she told her viewers. “It was the Nazis’ warning shot across the bow of our human civilization that led to genocide against a whole identity and, in that tower of burning books, it led to an attack on fact, knowledge, history and proof.”
“After four years of a modern day assault on those same values by Donald Trump, the Biden/Harris team pledges a return to norms, including the truth,” Amanpour continued. “And every day [President-elect] Joe Biden makes presidential announcements about good governance and the health and security of the American people, while the great, brooding figure of his defeated opponent rages, conducting purges of perceived enemies and preventing a transition.”
It is, of course, worth noting Amanpour apologized because she believes people misunderstood her comment. That, though, is not the case. Listeners understood exactly what Amanpour was saying, and they knew it to be a grotesque comparison.