Pope Francis has warned against the rise of populist Leaders, like Adolph Hitler…
Pope Francis has warned against the rise of populist Leaders in Europe, saying that such movements could give rise to the election of leaders like Adolph Hitler of Germany.
Pope Francis made the comments to Spanish Newspaper El Pais as Donald Trump was being sworn in as the 45th President of the United States of America.
“In times of crisis, we lack judgment, and that is a constant reference for me. The most obvious example of European populism is Germany in 1933. After the crisis of 1930, Germany is broken, it needs to get up, to find its identity, a leader, someone capable of restoring its character, and there is a young man named Adolf Hitler.”
“Hitler didn’t steal the power, his people voted for him, and then he destroyed his people,” the pope added.
Pope Francis’ warnings come as a wave of populism washes over Europe, and as voters angry with traditional political elites throw their weight behind nationalist, anti-immigrant leaders.
The pontiff condemned the use of walls and barbed wire to keep out foreigners, but said it was too early to judge Mr. Trump, saying: “I think we must wait and see.”
“I don’t like to get ahead of myself nor judge people prematurely. We will see how he acts, what he does, and then I will have an opinion.”
Immediately after Trump’s inauguration ceremony Friday, the Pope sent him his best wishes, with prayers “that your decisions will be guided by the rich spiritual and ethical values that have shaped the history of the American people and your nation’s commitment to the advancement of human dignity and freedom worldwide.”
Pope Francis has not struck such a conciliatory tone in the past.
Previously, during the campaign of Donald Trump, Pope Francis described him as non-Christian for wanting to build a wall on the Mexican Border.
In response, Mr. Trump called the Pontiff’s words “disgraceful.”