Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) refused to apologize on Friday for engaging in Holocaust trivialization this week when she falsely claimed that the U.S. government was operating concentration camps on the southern border. Ocasio-Cortez then spread a new lie that it was the Republicans who were intentionally conflating terms in order to attack her, despite the fact that she made clear what she meant during her Instagram live video when she specifically referenced the Holocaust.
Ocasio-Cortez directly compared the immigrant detention facilities to Holocaust concentration camps on Monday night as she specifically referenced “Never Again,” which directly refers to the Holocaust.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy called out Ocasio-Cortez for her remarks, saying on Wednesday: “I think Congresswoman AOC needs to apologize. Not only to the nation but to the world. She does not understand history. She does not understand what is going on at the border at the same time. But there is no comparison…and to actually say that is really embarrassing. To take something that happened in history where millions of Jews had died, and equate it to somewhere that’s happening on the border, she owes this nation an apology.”
“I think he should apologize for the deliberate conflation and attack on these terms. I think he should apologize for the conditions that he’s supporting on the border,” Ocasio-Cortez arrogantly said. “He should apologize for his support for widespread human rights abuses — that’s what he should apologize for, and until he stops supporting the absolute dehumanizing conditions on our border, I will not apologize for holding him to account for it.”
Ocasio-Cortez’s claims are false as she directly compared what was going on at the southern border to Holocaust concentration camps during her initial Instagram live video.
In a tweet, Ocasio-Cortez wrote: “As long as the @GOPLeader supports jailing children and families on the border, I will continue to hold him to account for it. That’s why I’m calling on Rep. McCarthy to apologize for aiding and supporting the separation of children from their parents.”
Attorney Matthew J. O’Brien, who served as the Chief of the National Security Division (NSD) within the Fraud Detection and National Security Directorate (FDNS) at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), explained in an interview with The Daily Wire this week the differences between concentration camps, internment camps, and immigrant detention facilities.
“I think the point that Representative Ocasio-Cortez is missing is that a concentration camp typically refers to a detention facility where a totalitarian regime’s political enemies are kept and the purpose is to nullify them as political enemies,” O’Brien said. “Internment camp is a general term that in international law and in typical usage refers to a place where people are held temporarily in a conflict because they are either from an enemy power, from a non-allied power, and there is some sort of national security concern or other internal security concern associated with them. Whereas, an immigration detention facility is where people are held pursuant to a democratically passed law because they have no authorization to be in the country and they are temporarily held there while the government is evaluating their claim to any kind of immigration relief and those facilities are regulated.”
“The distinction between a concentration camp, which is usually regulated by the totalitarian government’s security forces, an Internment facility, which is usually regulated by the military or by a paramilitary security force, and immigration detention, is that immigration detention is monitored by the courts and anyone who is in immigration detention has access to the courts to contest any issues they may have with the detention,” O’Brien continued. “So to contrast between a totalitarian government using the force of the state to terrorize its political enemies, the temporary internment of people who represent a national security threat … versus a legal process that is designed to protect the safety and security both of the United States and of the people coming into the country because one of the reasons why we detain people in immigration detention is to figure out who they are so we can vet them but also so that we can determine what their purpose is here.”