Hillary Rodham Clinton raised the specter of Nazi-occupied Germany while making public comments about the military dispute between Russia and Ukraine, reportedly likening Russian President Vladimir Putin to Adolph Hitler.
Specifically, she said that Mr. Putin's decision to issue passports to those in Crimea with ties to Russia is akin to the "population transfers" that went forth in Germany in the lead-up to World War II, BuzzFeed reported.
"Now if this sounds familiar, it's what Hitler did back in the '30s," Mrs. Clinton said Tuesday during a private event in Southern California, according to the Long Beach Press-Telegram, which had its executive editor, Harry Saltzgaver, at the event.
BuzzFeed noted her speech was one of the few foreign policy commentaries she has made publicly since exiting her State Department role in 2013.
Mr. Saltzgaver told BuzzFeed that "Mrs. Clinton talked at length on the situation in the Ukraine. … She compared issuing Russian passports to Ukrainians with ties to Russia with early actions by Nazi Germany before Hitler began invading neighboring countries. She said, however, that while that makes people nervous, there is no indication that Putin is as irrational as the instigator of Word War II."
BuzzFeed reported that another person attending the event also heard Mrs. Clinton talking about "how what Putin is doing now is similar to what Hitler did, essentially providing these ethnic Russians in the Crimea region access back to Russia."
The event she spoke at was reportedly a $1,500-per-person fundraiser for the Boys and Girls Club of Long Beach.
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