Fox News' Greg Gutfeld is facing new backlash — this time over his comment about Holocaust victims' work skills

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  • Fox News is facing fresh backlash after one of its hosts made comments about concentration camp victims' work skills.

  • Greg Gutfeld said that those in the work camps with skills survived during the Holocaust — a clear simplification.

  • "Being skilled or useful did not spare them from the horrors of the gas chambers," the Auschwitz memorial said in response.

Fox News is facing a slew of backlash after one of its primetime hosts suggested that Holocaust survivors who had work skills survived in concentration camps.

On an episode of "The Five" Monday, Greg Gutfeld referenced a book by Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl and said "you had to survive in a concentration camp by having skills. You had to be useful… Utility kept you alive."

Gutfeld's Holocaust remark was meant to defend Florida's new educational guideline to teach students that slaves learned skills that could be "applied for their personal benefit."

Representatives for Fox News did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

Early Tuesday, the Auschwitz Memorial shared a lengthy statement on Twitter condemning Gutfeld.

"While it is true that some Jews may have used their skills or usefulness to increase their chances of survival during the Holocaust, it is essential to contextualize this statement properly and understand that it does not represent the complex history of the genocide perpetrated by Nazi Germany," the statement began.

The statement went on to contextualize Frankl's observations that Gutfeld was referencing, noting that some Jews who were stationed at Auschwitz — which was both a work and extermination camp — "became registered prisoners and might have used their skills to gain favor or prolong their lives in that particular setting. Yet, it never gave them complete protection."

"However, we must not overlook the larger picture of the Holocaust," the statement continued. "Millions of Jews were brutally murdered in execution sites ... with entire communities wiped out regardless of their usefulness or contributions to society.

"Being skilled or useful did not spare them from the horrors of the gas chambers," the statement said. "We should avoid such oversimplifications in talking about this complex tragic story," the Auschwitz Memorial concluded.


Shortly after, the White House strongly rebuked Gutfeld's comments in a statement shared with The Hill.

"What Fox News allowed to be said on their air yesterday — and has so far failed to condemn — is an obscenity," spokesperson Andrew Bates said in a statement to The Hill.

"In defending a horrid, dangerous, extreme lie that insults the memory of the millions of Americans who suffered from the evil of enslavement, a Fox News host told another horrid, dangerous, and extreme lie that insults the memory of the millions of people who suffered from the evils of the Holocaust," the statement continued.

And on CNN Tuesday night, a Holocaust survivor told host Abby Phillip that he is "disgusted" by Gutfeld's comments.

Michael Bornstein recalled how his father and brother, who possessed "skills," were gassed in Auschwitz.

"There's no silver lining to killing six million people or talking about slaves and the benefits of slaves and learning and what they were doing," Bornstein said. "There's absolutely no room for fake news like that."

Gutfelds' comments have sparked criticism in the past. Last year, he suggested that US reporters were exaggerating how devastating Russia's invasion of Ukraine had been and in May, he made a joke that a teacher accused of having sex with an underage student was a "hero" — because the teacher was female and the student was a teen boy.

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