The Tesla CEO used a picture of Adolf Hitler to criticize Canadian PM Justin Trudeau
Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has been hammered by journalists, activists, and the Auschwitz Memorial for posting an image of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler to criticize Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s crackdown on the anti-mandate Freedom Convoy protests.
Canadian authorities on Wednesday ordered banks and financial institutions not to support transactions from dozens of cryptocurrency wallets linked to the ongoing Freedom Convoy protests, which have seen traffic in downtown Ottawa and at several key US/Canada border crossings brought to a standstill by truckers.
Musk responded to the news by posting an image of Adolf Hitler along with a caption reading “Stop comparing me to Justin Trudeau. At least I had a budget.”
The post proved controversial, with the Auschwitz Memorial accusing Musk of “exploiting the tragedy of all people who suffered, were humiliated, tortured & murdered by the totalitarian regime of Nazi Germany.”
Activists and journalists joined in, with Reuters correspondent Chris Taylor demanding Twitter “do something” about Musk’s post and former CBS News anchor Dan Rather describing it as “beyond the pale of any civilized communication.” Other commenters swore to avoid Tesla’s vehicles, and highlighted allegations of racial “segregation” within Tesla’s factories.
Musk later deleted his tweet without explanation.
The emergency powers invoked by Trudeau also allow Canadian banks to suspend the trucking licenses of protesters and freeze the bank accounts of those suspected of donating cash to the truckers, without a court order. Musk has been outspoken in his support for the truckers, and was initially suspected of donating anonymously to their fundraiser. He never admitted this, but branded crowdfunding site GoFundMe “professional thieves” for shutting down a fundraising drive for the protest.
While the Freedom Convoy protesters initially descended on Ottawa nearly three weeks ago to demand the government lift a Covid-19 vaccine requirement for cross-border truckers, they have since broadened their scope to demand the immediate lifting of all virus-related civil liberties restrictions. Their protest has inspired several similar ‘convoy’ protests around the world.
Over the course of the pandemic, demonstrators worldwide have sometimes utilized Nazi symbols to compare lockdowns and vaccine mandates to the decrees of Hitler’s Germany. In particular, protesters have often used yellow stars – which Nazi Germany used to segregate Jews – to condemn the penalization of the unvaccinated. The Auschwitz Memorial was always fiercely critical of the Nazi comparisons, declaring, “Instrumentalization of the tragedy of Jews … is a sad symptom of moral and intellectual decline.”