Is Donald Trump Literally Hitler?

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Chris Bray Writer and Historian
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With the factual precision and shrewd analysis that have come to define the American news media, our finest journalists and public intellectuals have torn the mask off of Donald Trump, revealing the chilling parallels between the Republican presidential candidate and the monstrous German dictator Adolf Hitler.

The Washington Post discovers “The theory of political leadership that Donald Trump shares with Adolf Hitler.”

New York Magazine demonstrates “How Hitler’s Rise to Power Explains Why Republicans Accept Donald Trump.”

“Once again,” warns a Miami Herald columnist, “a clownish demagogue bestrides the political landscape, demonizing vulnerable peoples, bullying opponents, encouraging violence, offering simplistic, strongman solutions to difficult and complex problems, and men and women who bear more moral authority on this subject than I ever could see something chilling and familiar in him.”

If anything, these overly careful and sober thinkers understate the case. A side-by-side analysis of two seminal books makes the similarities between Trump and Hitler terrifyingly obvious. What follows are parallel passages from Hitler’s Mein Kampf and Trump’s The Art of the Deal, interspersed for purposes of comparison. In both instances, I have drawn from chapters that describe each man’s defining encounter with the major city that would shape his young life: for Hitler, Vienna, and for Trump, New York. These passages speak to us through the years with a nearly identical voice, saying strikingly comparable things about astonishingly similar themes. Analyzing the experiences of their young adult years, and the story each man tells of his coming of age, we can see the shocking overlap between the formational worldviews shared by Hitler and Trump:

“For as soon as I began to investigate the matter and observe the Jews, then Vienna appeared to me in a different light. Wherever I now went I saw Jews, and the more I saw of them the more strikingly and clearly they stood out as a different people from the other citizens. Especially the inner city and the district northward from the Danube Canal swarmed with a people who, even in outer appearance, bore no similarity to the Germans.”

— Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

“One of the first things I did was join Le Club, which at the time was the hottest club in the city and perhaps the most exclusive — like Studio 54 at its height. It was located on East 54th Street, and its membership included some of the most successful men and the most beautiful women in the world. It was the sort of place where you were likely to see a wealthy seventy-five-year-old guy walk in with three blondes from Sweden.”

— Donald Trump, The Art of the Deal

“Cleanliness, whether moral or of another kind, had its own peculiar meaning for these people. That they were water-shy was obvious on looking on them and, unfortunately, very often also when not looking at them at all. The odor of those people in caftans often used to make me feel ill. Beyond that there were the unkempt clothes and the ignoble exterior. All these details were certainly not attractive; but the revolting feature was that beneath their unclean exterior one suddenly perceived the moral mildew of the chosen race.”

— Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

“It wasn’t an environment conducive to new real estate development. In the first nine months of 1973, the city issued permits for about 15,000 new apartments and single-family homes in the five boroughs. In the first nine months of 1974, the number dropped to 6,000. I worried about the future of New York City, too, but I can’t say it kept me up nights. I’m basically an optimist, and frankly, I saw the city’s trouble as a great opportunity for me. Because I grew up in Queens, I believed, perhaps to an irrational degree, that Manhattan was always going to be the best place to live — the center of the world. Whatever troubles the city might be having in the short term, there was no doubt in my mind that things had to turn around ultimately. What other city was going to take New York’s place?”

— Donald Trump, The Art of the Deal

“Was there any shady undertaking, any form of foulness, especially in cultural life, in which at least one Jew did not participate? On putting the probing knife carefully to that kind of abscess one immediately discovered, like a maggot in a putrescent body, a little Jew who was often blinded by the sudden light… One needed only to look at the posters announcing the hideous productions of the cinema and theatre, and study the names of the authors who were highly lauded there, to become permanently adamant on Jewish questions. Here was a pestilence, a moral pestilence, with which the public was being infested. It was worse than the Black Plague of long ago. And in what mighty doses this poison was manufactured and distributed.”

— Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

“I don’t believe that you can ever be hurt by buying a good location at a low price. At the time, a lot of neighborhoods on the West Side were considered dangerous places to live. There were welfare hotels on every side street, and drug dealers in every park. I remember the New York Times running a long series of articles about the block between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue at 84th Street — what a tough area it was. Even so, you didn’t have to look very far to see how easily it could all change. Even on the tough side streets, like West 84th, there were magnificent old brownstones only a few steps away from Central Park. And on the Avenues, especially Central Park West and Riverside Drive, there were beautiful old buildings with huge apartments and spectacular views. It was only a matter of time before people discovered the value.”

— Donald Trump, The Art of the Deal

Case closed. Can there be any question that these are essentially the same man, come to life in different places and eras?

We have been warned.

Editor’s note: This is a satirical article.