Berliner Tageblatt - Trump campaign deletes 'reich' video as Biden assails rival

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Trump campaign deletes 'reich' video as Biden assails rival
Trump campaign deletes 'reich' video as Biden assails rival / Photo: © POOL/AFP

Trump campaign deletes 'reich' video as Biden assails rival

Donald Trump's social media account on Tuesday removed a video showing fake headlines about a "unified reich" if he wins the 2024 US election, as his rival President Joe Biden fiercely condemned the post.

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Trump's campaign blamed an inattentive staffer for reposting the 30-second clip, which flashed a series of fictitious news stories painting a picture of American prosperity, with one including the term normally associated with Nazi Germany.

"This is the same guy that uses Hitler's language, not America's," Biden told donors during a fundraiser in Boston.

"It's no surprise" that Trump was reported as saying "that Hitler did some, quote, 'some good things,'" Biden added, referring to a recent CNN story.

The video in question was posted Monday afternoon and was removed around 19 hours later.

"What happens after Donald Trump wins? What's next for America?" a voiceover asks in the clip as the hypothetical headlines are shown.

Amid headlines including "Economy booms!" and "Border is closed," one mentions "the creation of a "unified reich."

No direct reference to Nazis is made in the clip, but the word "reich" is commonly used in reference to the Third Reich of Nazi Germany.

Other references in the video, which appeared to have multiple copy-and-pasted chunks of text to fill out the "newspaper" background, mention World War I. The "unified reich" headline appears to reference the 1871 unification of Germany.

Biden also said Trump is still "obsessed" over his 2020 loss.

"It unhinged him," the president said, ramping up the campaign rhetoric. "The guy's a little unhinged."

- 'Rule as a dictator' -

In a statement, Trump campaign spokeswoman Karoline Leavitt said the post had no official backing and that the "reich" reference was unintentional.

"This was not a campaign video, it was created by a random account online and reposted by a staffer who clearly did not see the word," she said.

Trump didn't respond to shouted questions about the video as he attended his historic criminal trial in New York.

The post comes as Trump has repeatedly sought to portray Biden as failing to curb anti-Semitism in the United States during a period of rising tensions fueled by the war in Gaza.

But Trump himself has repeatedly used rhetoric that carries clear echoes of Nazi ideology, including describing domestic opponents as "vermin" and immigrants as "poisoning the blood" of the United States.

While president, Trump in 2017 said some neo-Nazi marchers during violent protests in Charlottesville, Virginia -- who had chanted "Jews will not replace us" -- were "very fine people," and he has dined with white nationalists at his Florida estate.

Trump has a "long history" of anti-Semitic behavior, the Biden campaign said Monday.

"Donald Trump is not playing games. He is telling America exactly what he intends to do if he regains power: rule as a dictator over a 'unified reich',' spokesperson James Singer said.

Later, the Biden campaign asked "why the hell was it posted in the first place?" and "why did it take so long to take it down?"

D.Schneider--BTB