By ROBERT ROMANO
It appears that U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-N.Y.) irresponsible and reckless comparison of illegal immigrant detention facilities to Nazi concentration camps where millions were murdered inspired the Antifa member who firebombed an Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility in Tacoma, Wash. on July 12.
A manifesto reportedly left behind by Willem Van Spronsen, a 69-year-old, ran with the AOC comparison, stating, “evil says concentration camps for folks deemed lesser are necessary. the handmaid of evil says the concentration camps should be more humane… this is a call to patriots, too, to stand against this travesty against everything that you hold sacred. i know you. i know that in your hearts, you see the dishonor in these camps… here it is, in these corporate for profit concentration camps… detention centers are an abomination. i’m not standing by.”
Van Spronsen, who was armed with a rifle, blew up a vehicle with explosives, was attempting to detonate a propane tank near the facility and was shot to death by police who reported to the scene.
The attack appears to have been inspired by Ocasio-Cortez who on Twitter on June 18 declared, “This administration has established concentration camps on the southern border of the United States for immigrants, where they are being brutalized with dehumanizing conditions and dying. This is not hyperbole. It is the conclusion of expert analysis…”
But so far, Ocasio-Cortez refuses to denounce the attack or to walk back her unbelievable comparison of federal law enforcement to the perpetrators of those who murdered millions in the Holocaust.
Here, Ocasio-Cortez trivializes not only the scale of death in the Holocaust but the conditions of the concentration camps where so many perished.
As if nobody died in the concentration camps. Jews and others were not merely killed at the death camps in Poland. Many of the concentration camps were temporary housing for people on their way to the extermination facilities. Here, Ocasio-Cortez makes it sound like concentration camps were safe for those people who lived in them compared to those who were sent to the death camps.
It is a false distinction. People were absolutely murdered by security at the concentration camps sites other than the killing centers. When people couldn’t work anymore they were disposed of.
But not everybody even got to a camp. The Einsatzgruppen murdered more than 2 million people between 1941 and 1945 with its mobile killing squads, shooting large groups of people and filling mass graves.
The mortality rates were through the roof and the truth is we don’t know how many truly perished because the Nazis incinerated them afterward.
But we do know how many survived. The Einsatzgruppen kept extremely accurate records of camp populations throughout the war. As of Jan. 1945, there were 714,211 persons in camps. About 200,000 died in the death marches in the spring of 1945, leaving about 500,000 total survivors from the camps at the time of liberation, but about 10 percent of those died in the aftermath from disease, and another 12,500 committed suicide. So, perhaps 437,500 survived the Holocaust. Out of upwards of 20 million, perhaps 2.25 percent survived, an astounding 97.75 percent mortality rate.
Not many people were living at the death camps. Almost all were taken off the trains and directly into the gas chambers. Where does Ocasio-Cortez suppose the victims on the trains came from?
The fact is that almost everybody who got sent to any camp or was imprisoned even for a short time ended up dead. The scale of death was unimaginable. The vast majority who were killed went through the camps system, and to suggest otherwise borders on a form of Holocaust denial. In the least it is historical revisionism on the part of Ocasio-Cortez, all in a misguided effort to get Trump.
Ocasio-Cortez should visit to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., so she can learn the history she is obviously ignorant of. It’s not that far from the Capitol.
Calling the immigrant detention centers concentration camps absolutely, irrevocably invokes the Holocaust, and implies they are being housed in lieu of eventually being murdered.
In the meantime, almost nobody in federal custody dies, least of all by murder from the guards. From the beginning of 2017 through May 2019, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol have apprehended 1.41 million people entering the country illegally. Of that number, 24 died while in custody, a mortality rate of 0.0017 percent. Far more were ordered deported, about 452,000, having no legal basis for being here.
Compared to federal and state prison populations, in 2014 there were 3,927 deaths in federal and state prisons, which had a total population of 1.56 million that year, a rate of 0.25 percent. Nearly all the deaths were illness-related, suicides or drug and/or alcohol intoxication. Just 83 were determined to be homicides, or about 2 percent of the deaths.
Comparing the illegal immigrant detention facilities for the purposes of deporting illegal immigrants that were already in existence before President Donald Trump was even elected to the concentration camps that murdered millions is so outrageous, so reckless and so beyond the pale it is unbelievable.
And now it is resulting in political violence and an act of domestic terrorism.
Why have Ocasio-Cortez or her colleagues in Congress feuding with President Trump on Twitter refused to denounce this violence? When will she stop making these insane comparisons? When a Bernie Sanders supporter, James Hodgkinson, shot up the GOP Congressional baseball practice in 2017, Sanders immediately denounced it. It is shocking that in just two years, political violence has apparently become acceptable to the “woke” radical left-wing of the Democratic Party in Congress.
Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government. You can read more of his articles at www.dailytorch.com.
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