After a considerable amount of backlash for accusing the United States of running concentration camps on the southern border (and repeatedly doubling down on that claim), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is now backtracking on her original statement, blaming Rep. Liz Cheney for making the comparison of concentration camps to the Holocaust.
Reminder: the member who directly + explicitly compared concentration camps on our border to the Holocaust was *Liz Cheney.*
The horrors of the Holocaust went beyond the use of concentration camps, yet camps were part of the process.
They have also been used before and after.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 24, 2019
In addition to the backlash she’s received, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has received (and turned down) multiple invites to visit and tour actual concentration camps so she can get educated on what they really were and why her comparison was irresponsible. Perhaps attempting to pin the blame on Liz Cheney was the best strategy her staff could come up with, but it rings hollow, as it was Ocasio-Cortez who originally told her followers on Instagram, “The U.S. is running concentration camps on our southern border and that is exactly what they are. They are concentration camps. And.. umm… If that doesn’t bother you… I don’t… [unintelligble] I want to talk to the people that are concerned enough with humanity to say that ‘never again’ means something,”
The words “concentration camps” and “never again” are ubiquitous with the Nazi Holocaust. It is highly unlikely that Ocasio-Cortez does not know this. Obviously, AOC was trying to evoke the Nazi Holocaust and Nazi concentration camps. Further, after she was called out by Rep. Cheney, AOC followed up with a tweet accusing the Trump administration of establishing concentration camps and saying, “This is not hyperbole. It is the conclusion of expert analysis,” and linked to an Esquire article that acknowledged that the term “is synonymous with the Nazi death machines across the European continent.” If she wasn’t trying to evoke the Holocaust she would have pointed that out originally, and now she’s trying to change the narrative.
Actual Holocaust survivors also took issue with AOC’s disgraceful comparison:
Yad Vashem, Israel’s official memorial to Holocaust victims, also tweeted the following:
.@AOC Concentration camps assured a slave labor supply to help in the Nazi war effort, even as the brutality of life inside the camps helped assure the ultimate goal of "extermination through labor."
— Yad Vashem (@yadvashem) June 19, 2019
Apparently the pressure was too much, and rather than apologize she’s decided, like Democrats typically do, to blame someone else for their own ignorance.
Matt Margolis is the author of the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. His new book, Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy, will be published on July 30, 2019. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis