Breitbart London Editor in Chief Raheem Kassam yesterday told a BBC presenter that conflating criticism of the press with Nazism is as ridiculous as making Volkswagen cars taboo.
On BBC World Service yesterday Kassam was asked whether he finds it “concerning” that both Breitbart and the head of a controversial think tank had used the term “lugenpresse”.
“Yeah and people still drive Volkswagens, heaven forbid,” the Breitbart London editor responded mockingly, referring to the fact the car giant was set up in 1937 by Germany’s National Socialist government.
Kassam hit back at presenter Tim Franks’ insistence that ‘lugenpresse’ is a “Nazi term of abuse” by pointing out that the word appears regularly in the German media today and is also used by left wingers in the country.
Franks erroneously asserted that the term, which translates to “lying press,” was “coined in Nazi Germany,” when the word appeared in the title of a book as early as 1914, but is known to have been used for decades before this, even going back as far as the 1840s.
Speaking on the Breitbart News Daily radio show this morning, Kassam said that the term stretches back to the 19th Century, and has been used by Nazis, Communists, Marxists, revolutionaries, counter-revolutionaries, liberals, and more.
Kassam also spoke on the topic of Donald Trump’s relationship with the media. Asked whether it’s “unhealthy” that the president-elect tweeted to say he was cancelling a meeting with The New York Times, “when he’s presumably extremely busy,” the Nigel Farage ally pointed out that sending a single tweet is hardly time-consuming.
Pressed on whether he thinks it’s concerning that the tweet was sent early in the morning, Kassam compared Trump’s sleep pattern to those of iconic conservative former heads of state.
“Margaret Thatcher was up at that time and Ronald Reagan was up and that time. That’s what world leaders do,” he said.
Informing the presenter of the fact Trump has since taken to Twitter to say the meeting is back on, the Breitbart London editor added, “Quite frankly, if he can negotiate with one of the biggest newspapers in the world by sending 140 characters out you’ve gotta give the man something… he’s onto something.”