Fox News Anchor Blasts AOC, Reveals He Doesn’t Know What Concentration Camps Are

Fox News Anchor Blasts AOC, Reveals He Doesn’t Know What Concentration Camps Are

It seems like a pretty simple historical point for conservatives to learn: Nazis did not invent concentration camps. And yet!

Fox News’ Bill Hemmer made this mistake on Tuesday morning during an interview with Art Del Cueto, the vice president of the National Border Patrol Council, a union of border patrol agents.

Hemmer was responding to comments by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY). In an Instagram post on Monday night, Ocaso-Cortez accused the American government of “running concentration camps on our southern border” to hold migrants captured trying to cross into the U.S.

“The fact that concentration camps are now an institutionalized practice in the home of the free is extraordinarily disturbing,” the Democrat from New York added.

Del Cueto and Hemmer both went off over the comparison. Del Cueto said it was “disgusting to compare concentration camps to what the men and women are doing here protecting our country.”

Hemmer growled, “She used the extermination of six million people…Has she ever been to…Auschwitz Birkenau in southern Poland? Or Dachau in Germany? ‘Never again’ is the phrase that Jews all over the world use to make sure that the extermination between 1939 and 1945 never happens again.”

Hemmer was far from the only conservative complaining about AOC’s choice of words:

Multiple historians were quick to point out that Cheney, Hemmer and others are conflating concentration camps with death camps. The latter, of which Auschwitz is an example, were established with the specific purpose of industrialized murder of Jews and others sent there by Nazis during World War II.

“Concentration camps,” however, are defined as places where large groups of people “are detained or confined under armed guard.” The term may be most often applied to camps run by Nazis, but it has been used for such camps since at least the late 1800s. Franklin Roosevelt used it to describe the camps where he ordered Japanese-Americans detained during World War II.

AOC was perfectly correct in calling the places where the U.S. government is detaining huge groups of migrants under armed guard “concentration camps.” Historians and other experts are backing her up on this. Conservatives are misusing history to try and score points against her, and falling flat on their faces.

It is the Bill Hemmers of the world who need to crack a history book, not Ocasio-Cortez.

Watch the video above, via Fox News.

Gary Legum

Gary Legum has written about politics and culture for Independent Journal Review, Salon, The Daily Beast, Wonkette, AlterNet and McSweeney's, among others. He currently lives in his native state of Virginia.