Many people were shocked when Joe Biden referenced Adolf Hitler during the debate last night. The comment was bizarrely out-of-context and inaccurate to boot.
Trump was defending his North Korea policy. “We’re not in a war, we have a good relationship,” the president said.
Technically, we’re at war with North Korea because the armistice of 1952 was only a cease-fire agreement. But everyone knew what Trump was talking about; we’re not in a shooting war with North Korea.
Biden took issue with the president’s statement.
“Having a good relationship with leaders of other countries is a good thing,” Trump said.
Biden shot back, “That’s like saying we had a good relationship with Hitler before he in fact invaded Europe.”
No, it’s not like saying anything of the sort. Nazi Germany was an aggressive, expansionist power. North Korea is not. And, more directly, we didn’t have a good relationship with Hitler. In fact, it was rather frosty. Franklin Roosevelt never condemned Hitler outright, but neither did Great Britain and France — until it was too late.
FDR did not utter a single unkind word about Hitler until 1938. But from then on, he condemned the Nazi’s treatment of the Jews, and relations between the U.S. and Germany soured. They became worse when war broke out in 1939 and while Roosevelt was careful not to take sides explicitly, he worked frantically behind the scenes to get America ready for war.
The nation was virulently isolationist at the time and Roosevelt would have been called a “warmonger” and worse if he condemned Hitler outright. But U.S. relations with Germany were far from “good” either before or after Hitler invaded.
Biden sought to clarify his remarks when Trump pointed out that Kim Jong-un refused to meet with Barack Obama.
The former vice president added: ‘Come on. The reason he would not meet with President Obama is because President Obama said we’re going to talk about denuclearization.
‘We’re not going to legitimize you. We’re going to continue to push stronger and stronger sanctions on you.
‘That’s why he wouldn’t meet with us.’
It was Donald Trump who convinced Kim to start denuclearization talks. They didn’t go very far but Obama was never able to even move the needle.
Biden hit out at Trump for saying that a ‘thug’ like Kim was his ‘good buddy.’
‘They have much more capable missiles able to reach US territory much more easily than they ever did before,’ Biden said.
That’s a debatable analysis of North Korean missile technology. The missiles may be theoretically capable of hitting the U.S. but there’s no indication whatsoever that they could carry a nuclear payload. And the question of how reliable the missiles are has not been answered.
Biden’s Hitler reference brought immediate criticism from conservative commentators.
Did Joe Biden just say we have a good relationship with Hitler at one point? No we did not, Joe.
— Mark R. Levin (@marklevinshow) October 23, 2020
I would like a fact check on "We had a good relationship with Hitler".
— Ben Domenech (@bdomenech) October 23, 2020
“We had a good relationship with Hitler…"
Yes, he really said this. https://t.co/QRAtrLlVeL
— Dinesh D'Souza (@DineshDSouza) October 23, 2020
By the way, we did not have a great relationship with Hitler and Hitler did not invade us. Joe should know this. He was in his 40s during WW2 after all.
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) October 23, 2020
Given the length of the debate, Dictionary.com reminded us of Godwin’s Law.
Godwin's law dictates that the longer an argument goes on, the more likely it is that someone will mention Hitler.
— Dictionary.com (@Dictionarycom) October 23, 2020
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