As the diplomatic crisis between Turkey and the Netherlands escalates, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is demanding an apology from Turkey’s President Erdoğan for comparing his country to the Nazis. Erdoğan had described the Dutch government as “Nazi remnants and fascists” for refusing to allow Turkish ministers to address political rallies in Rotterdam to promote his constitutional referendum.
Here are seven other times the aspiring sultan of Ankara has called people Nazis.
In 2014, Erdoğan claimed Israel’s Operation Protective Edge against Hamas dwarfed Hitler’s atrocities during WWII.
They curse Hitler morning and night. However, now their barbarism has surpassed even Hitler’s.”
Erdoğan later doubled down:
I don’t approve of what Hitler did, and neither do I approve of what Israel has done… It’s inappropriate to ask who was the more barbarous.
Following Berlin’s refusal to allow Turkish ministers to address political rallies in Germany, Erdoğan retorted:
Germany, you don’t have anything to do with democracy. These current practices of yours are no different than the Nazi practices of the past.
When Luxembourg’s PM Jean Asselbor compared the arrests of pro-Kurdish MPs and journalists after last year’s failed coup to acts committed by the Nazis, Erdoğan snapped,
If there are any Nazis, it is you who are the Nazis.
4. The Jews
In 1997, as mayor of Istanbul, Erdoğan told a municipality meeting:
The Jews have begun to crush the Muslims of Palestine, in the name of Zionism. Today, the image of the Jews is no different from that of the Nazis.
As prime minister, Erdoğan told the United Nations
5. Bashar al-Assad
Calling on the Syrian dictator to resign in 2011, when what became a brutal civil war was still a “crackdown on protesters,” Erdoğan said:
Fighting your own people until the death is not heroism, it’s cowardice. If you want to see someone who fights his people to the death, look at Nazi Germany, look at Hitler.
6. Ayelet Shaked
After Jewish Home MK (and now Justice Minister) Ayelet Shaked posted an article by journalist Uri Elitzur on Facebook that said “all Palestinians are our enemies,” Erdoğan told his cabinet:
This mentality is no different to that of Hitler.
Erdoğan cited Nazi Germany as an example of an effective presidential system, touting his desire for constitutional reforms to replace Turkey’s parliamentary democracy with such a system, in which he would be president with emboldened executive powers.
Yes. There is nothing to say that you can’t have a presidential system in a unitary state. There are already some examples in the world today, and also some from the past. You see it when you look at Hitler’s Germany.