Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) sought to deflect attention from her “concentration camp” remarks on Tuesday by feigning outrage at Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) after Cheney correctly stated the horrors of the Holocaust.
Cheney blasted Ocasio-Cortez early on Tuesday after Ocasio-Cortez falsely claimed in a late night Instagram live video on Monday that the Trump administration was operating “concentration camps” on the southern border.
“Please @AOC do us all a favor and spend just a few minutes learning some actual history,” Cheney tweeted to Ocasio-Cortez. “6 million Jews were exterminated in the Holocaust. You demean their memory and disgrace yourself with comments like this.”
Ocasio-Cortez responded: “Also @Liz_Cheney, the fact that you employed the horrifying word ‘exterminated’ here (co-opting the language of the oppressor) tells us that it’s *you* that needs to brush up on your reading. Hope you enjoy defending concentration camps. I won’t back down fighting against them.”
In an interview later in the day, Ocasio-Cortez, appearing nervous, said: “She used the term ‘extermination’ which is co-opting the language, eh, of that. You know, that term implies that the people who died in the Holocaust, it, it doubles down on the rhetoric that justified it. So, I think it’s, uh, I mean I think she’s the one that needs to do her homework.”
Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986, said at a ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz:
I speak to you as a man, who 50 years and nine days ago had no name, no hope, no future and was known only by his number, A7713.
I speak as a Jew who has seen what humanity has done to itself by trying to exterminate an entire people and inflict suffering and humiliation and death on so many others. [Emphasis added]
The New York Times wrote the following about Wiesel after he died in 2016:
Mr. Wiesel, a charismatic lecturer and humanities professor, was the author of several dozen books. In 1986, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. But he was defined not so much by the work he did as by the gaping void he filled. In the aftermath of the Germans’ systematic massacre of Jews, no voice had emerged to drive home the enormity of what had happened and how it had changed mankind’s conception of itself and of God … “Wiesel is a messenger to mankind,” the Nobel citation said. “His message is one of peace, atonement and human dignity. His belief that the forces fighting evil in the world can be victorious is a hard-won belief.”
In an interview on Fox News, Cheney fired back by noting that a basic “surface-level” knowledge about the Holocaust proves that Ocasio-Cortez is wrong about what she said. Cheney also called out Democratic leaders for failing to condemn Ocasio-Cortez’s comments.