Russia’s Foreign Minister Thinks Jews are… Nazis?

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stated his nation’s goal in invading Ukraine is to “denazify” the country. To support this claim, he made some bizarre remarks on Sunday about Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky. 

Lavrov said, “the fact that [Zelensky] is a Jew does not negate the Nazi elements in his country. I believe that Adolf Hitler also had Jewish blood.” Lavrov doubled down, saying, “the greatest anti-Semites were Jews.” He claimed Russia is trying to ensure security for pro-Russian Ukrainians and that Zelensky sabotages peace talks while giving his soldiers borderline criminal orders, though he did not say what these crimes would be.

What in the world was he thinking? I can hardly believe he tried comparing Zelensky to Hitler, responsible for the murder of 6 million Jews, while Lavrov’s nation’s leader orders his military to pummel Ukrainian citizens, hundreds of thousands of whom are Jewish. Trying to equate Jewish people with Nazism borders on insanity. To make matters worse, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid’s denouncement of Lavrov’s statements led Lavrov to say the “current Israeli government supports the neo-Nazi regime in Kyiv.” He may think he is clever in trying to redirect people’s perception of Ukraine and Israel to strengthen the Russian cause, but I doubt anyone is falling for his desperate rhetoric. Israel is the last country on Earth that would support any form of Nazism. Lavrov is in an unenviable position in trying to defend Russia’s actions and image, but his attempt to make Jewish people look like Nazis is laughably unconvincing.