Turkish Leader Compares Israelis to Nazis

The Turkish president has asked if what the Israeli leader is doing in the besieged enclave is ‘any less than what Hitler did’.

Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan speaks before the UN
Erdogan’s remarks come as Turkey ratchets up criticism of Israel over the Gaza attacks [File: Brendan McDermid/Reuters]

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has compared Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Adolf Hitler, likening Israel’s assault on Gaza to Nazi Germany’s killing of Jews.

In remarks at an awards ceremony in capital Ankara, Erdogan asked what difference there was between Netanyahu and Hitler.

Turkey’s Erdogan calls Israel a ‘terror state’

Netanyahu later responded by pointing to Turkey’s own history of alleged rights abuses

“They used to speak ill of Hitler. What difference do you have from Hitler?

They are going to make us miss Hitler. Is what this Netanyahu is doing any less than what Hitler did? It is not,” Erdogan said.

“He is richer than Hitler, he gets the support from the West.

“All sorts of support comes from the United States. And what did they do with all this support? They killed more than 20,000 Gazans.”

Erdogan’s remarks have come as Turkey ratchets up criticism of Israel, reversing a trend of growing ties between the two nations before Israel’s assault on Gaza took a devastating humanitarian toll that has sparked outrage across the region.

The Turkish leader has previously levelled harsh criticism at Netanyahu and Israel, calling Israel a “terror state” with “unlimited” Western support in November

Under Hitler’s rule, Nazi Germany embarked on an effort to systematically eliminate European Jews, killing six million through death and labour camps, mass shootings, and a variety of other methods.


The Israeli prime minister later hit back at Erdogan, criticising Turkey for its own record of alleged rights abuses at home and in its conflict with Kurdish armed groups.

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