Top Trump backers compare social media crackdown on far-right to Kristallnacht

Republican lawmaker Steve King, Fox News commentator Jeanine Pirro decry tech companies for action against Parler app, far-right commentators over incitement to violence

Jeanine Pirro, right, makes the Kristallnacht comparison on Fox News. (Screen shot)
Jeanine Pirro, right, makes the Kristallnacht comparison on Fox News. (Screen shot)

JTA — Prominent conservatives have found an analogy for the decision by leading tech companies to ban far-right actors and apps from their platforms: Kristallnacht, the violent German pogrom that preceded the Holocaust.

Amazon, Apple and Google have all decided to ban the social media app Parler, which is popular among the far-right, from their platforms, citing the possibility that the app could help incite more violence in the wake of last week’s violent insurrection at the Capitol. And after de-platforming US President Donald Trump, Facebook and Twitter have banned right-wing users involved in fomenting the violence.

Steve King, the former Iowa lawmaker who has said the term “white supremacist” isn’t so bad, said he lost thousands of Twitter followers in the crackdown.

“I have lost 8,000 followers on this twitter account in one day. Apple, Google, Facebook, & others have cancelled many conservatives. Last night was cyber god’s Kristallnacht!” he wrote on Twitter.

On Fox News on Monday, commentator Jeanine Pirro made a similar comparison.

“They gave us a taste of this pre-election when they suppressed the Hunter Biden story, and now that they’ve won, what we’re seeing is the kind of censorship that is akin to a Kristallnacht,” she said.

CNN host Jake Tapper, who is Jewish, called Pirro out over the statement.

“Kristallnacht was an organized pogrom by the Sturmabteilung and Hitler Youth destroying hundreds of synagogues and thousands of Jewish-owned businesses, killing dozens of Jews, and hauling tens of thousands of Jewish men to concentration camps such as Buchenwald,” Tapper tweeted.

Kristallnacht, which translates to “night of broken glass,” was also invoked over the weekend by Arnold Schwarzenegger, who compared the pogrom to the storming of the Capitol on Wednesday in a video that gained widespread attention online.

The former California governor described how many people in his native Austria were tormented after World War II by how they had enabled the Nazis.

“Wednesday was the day of broken glass right here in the United States,” Schwarzenegger said. “The broken glass was in the windows of the United States Capitol.”

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