Spicer: Hitler Didn't 'Sink to Using Chemical Weapons'

Sean Spicer
Posted at 3:20 PM, Apr 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-11 12:16:06-04

White House press secretary Sean Spicer made some eyebrow-raising remarks Tuesday as he tried condemning Russia's alliance with Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad in the wake of the horrific chemical weapons attack last week.

"We didn't even use chemical weapons in World War II," Spicer said during today's press briefing.

"You had a -- you know someone as despicable as Hitler who didn't even sink to using chemical weapons," Spicer said.

Asked by ABC News' Cecila Vega to later clarify his comments, Spicer gave a further muddled answer, "I think when you come to sarin gas, there was no -- he was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing," Spicer said of Hitler.

"He brought them into the Holocaust Center," said Spicer, who may have misspoken and been referring to Nazi concentration camps.

"But I'm saying that in the way that Assad used them where he went in towns, dropped them down to innocent - into the middle of towns - it was brought - so the use of it - I appreciate the clarification," Spicer said, before concluding, "That was not the intent."

After the briefing, Spicer offered another clarification on his comments.

"In no way was I trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the Holocaust," Spicer said in a statement. "I was trying to draw a distinction of the tactic of using airplanes to drop chemical weapons on population centers. Any attack on innocent people is reprehensible and inexcusable."

Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez called on Spicer to apologize for his comments.