(CNSNews.com) - White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Tuesday that even Adolf Hitler didn’t use chemical weapons when trying to stress how deplorable the Syrian president’s actions were - a comment he had to clarify later in the White House press briefing.
“We didn't use chemical weapons in World War II. You had someone as despicable as Hitler who didn't even sink to using chemical weapons. So you have to, if you're Russia, ask yourself is this a country that you and a regime that you want to align yourself with?” Spicer said in response to a question about why Russian President Vladimir Putin would pull back support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and the Syrian government despite their decades-long history.
Millions of Jews were killed in gas chambers by the Nazis.
“You have previously signed on to international agreements rightfully acknowledging that the use of chemical weapons should be out of bounds by every country. To not stand up to not only Assad, but your own word, should be troubling,” Spicer said about Putin.
“Russia put their name on the line, so it’s not a question of how long that alliance has lasted, but at what point do they recognize that they are now getting on the wrong side of history in a really bad way really quickly,” he said.
“And again, look at the countries that are standing with them: Iran, Syria, North Korea. This is not a team you want to be on, and I think that Russia has to recognize that while they may have had an alliance with them, that the lines that have been crossed are ones that no country should ever want to see another country cross,” Spicer added.
Later in the briefing, a reporter asked Spicer about his comparison to Hitler not using chemical weapons.
“I just want to give you an opportunity to clarify something you said that seems to be gaining some traction right now. ‘Hitler didn’t even sink to the level of using chemical weapons.’ What did you mean by that?” a reporter asked.
“I think when you come to sarin gas, there was no -- he was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing. I mean, there was clearly -- I understand your point, thank you,” Spicer said.
“Thank you, I appreciate that. There was not -- he brought them into the Holocaust center, I understand that, but I’m saying in the way that Assad used them, where he went into towns, dropped them down to innocent -- into the middle of towns. It was brought -- so the use of it -- I appreciate the clarification there. That was not the intent,” he said.