Lula da Silva compares the Israeli offensive to the Holocaust: “It existed when Hitler decided to kill the Jews”

“You know? What is happening in the Gaza Strip with the Palestinian people does not exist in any other historical moment. But it existed when Hitler decided to kill the Jews,” Lula stated, according to the newspaper ‘Folha de Sao Paulo’. .

Lula made these statements from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where he is attending the African Union summit as a guest. Lula gave an interview from his hotel in which he referred to the “massacre” in Gaza and argued that the UN Security Council “does not have the strength” to confront this type of conflict.

“We have no governance. The invasion of Iraq did not go through the UN Security Council. The invasion of Libya did not go through the UN Security Council. The invasion of Ukraine did not go through the UN Security Council and The Gaza massacre did not pass through the UN Security Council,” he recalled.

“The UN Security Council cannot do anything in the war between Israel and the Gaza Strip. The only thing it can do is ask for peace through the press, but it seems to me that Israel has the privilege of not complying with any decision issued of the leadership of the United Nations,” he added.

Israel summons Brazilian ambassador for formal protest

Following these statements, the Israeli Foreign Minister, Israel Katz, has announced that the Brazilian ambassador will be summoned on Monday to convey a formal protest.

“The words of the president of Brazil are shameful and serious. No one will harm Israel’s right to defend itself. I have ordered the people in my office to summon the Brazilian ambassador tomorrow for a formal protest,” Katz said in a message published on Twitter.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has also condemned Lula’s words for having “crossed a red line.” “The statements by the president of Brazil are shameful and alarming. They trivialize the Holocaust and try to harm the Jewish people and harm Israel’s right to defend itself,” he argued.

“Comparing Israel with the Nazi Holocaust and with Hitler is crossing a red line. Israel fights for its defense and to guarantee its future until a complete victory and it does so respecting international law,” he assured. Netanyahu has highlighted the summons of the Brazilian ambassador to give him a “severe reprimand.”

From Yav Vashem, the World Center for Commemoration of the Shoah or Holocaust, its president, Dani Dayan, has denounced Lula’s “anti-Semitism.” “These shameful words from the president of Brazil are an outrageous combination of hatred and ignorance,” Dayan posted on X, formerly Twitter.

“Comparing a country that fights against a murderous terrorist organization with the actions of the Nazis in the Holocaust deserves condemnation. It is sad that the president of Brazil has stooped to that level of extreme distortion of the Holocaust,” he argued.

Furthermore, Dayan has highlighted that they fit the definition of anti-Semitism published by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.

Criticism from the Brazilian opposition

Criticism has intensified even from within Brazil, where the opposition has criticized Lula’s words, especially the one considered closest to former president Jair Bolsonaro.

“The Holocaust is incomparable and can never be normalized,” said Senator Ciro Nogueira in a message on X, formerly Twitter. For deputy Alexandre Ramagem, Lula’s comparison is due to “a moment of madness.”

“Lula shows that he does not know what the Holocaust was, he offends the Jewish people and once again stains Brazil’s image abroad with inappropriate comparisons,” said former minister Sérgio Moro.

The Brazilian Israelite Confederation (CONIB) has also condemned Lula’s words. “The Nazis exterminated six million defenseless Jews in Europe just for being Jews. Israel is defending itself from a terrorist group that has invaded its country, killed more than a thousand people, promoted mass rapes, burned people alive and defends in its founding charter the elimination of the Jewish State,” he argued.

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