London, Jul 7 (PTI) Adolf Hitler 'did a lot of good things', former US president Donald Trump told his then chief of staff John Kelly during his trip to Europe in 2018 to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, a media report said on Wednesday.
Trump’s remark reportedly 'stunned' Kelly, a retired US Marine Corps general, the Wall Street Journal's Michael Bender writes in his book 'Frankly, We Did Win This Election', The Guardian reported.
Bender writes that during an impromptu history lesson in which Kelly was telling the former president 'which countries were on which side during the conflict', Trump insisted, 'Well, Hitler did a lot of good things”, the paper said.
Kelly was connecting 'the dots from the first world war to the second world war and all of Hitler’s atrocities', the paper said.
'This is totally false. President Trump never said this. It is made-up fake news, probably by a general who was incompetent and was fired,' a Trump spokesperson, Liz Harrington, said in a statement.
But Bender says unnamed sources reported that Kelly 'told the president that he was wrong, but Trump was undeterred”, emphasising German economic recovery under Hitler during the 1930s.
'Kelly pushed back again,' Bender writes, 'and argued that the German people would have been better off poor than subjected to the Nazi genocide.' Bender adds that Kelly told Trump that even if his claim about the German economy under the Nazis after 1933 were true, 'you cannot ever say anything supportive of Adolf Hitler. You just can’t.' Kelly, whose son was killed in Afghanistan in 2010, left the White House in early 2019. He has spoken critically of Trump since, reportedly telling friends the president he served was 'the most flawed person I have ever met in my life”. PTI ZH AKJ ZH ZH