Anti-pipeline activist apologizes for comparing Line 3 to Auschwitz

Steve Hunegs, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council, thanked LaDuke for “her acknowledgment that her analogy was inappropriate.” 

Winona LaDuke/Honor the Earth. Background: TPT-Twin Cities PBS/Facebook.

An anti-pipeline activist apologized Wednesday for calling Enbridge Energy’s Line 3 pipeline replacement project the “ecological equivalent to Auschwitz.”

Winona LaDuke, executive director of Honor the Earth, was invited on TPT Almanac Friday night after the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency approved some of the last major permits for the project.

“So, you know, there’s some people that are up there trying to get some money because it’s a really difficult time in the north. But you know what? It’s kind of like getting a job in the gas chamber,” said LaDuke, Alpha News reported.

“That’s a great job to have, but it’s really not the job you want to have for the long term and that’s what this pipeline is like. It’s like the ecological equivalent to Auschwitz. That’s what this pipeline is. So I don’t want to work in the gas chamber and I don’t want an Auschwitz,” she added.

LaDuke apologized for her comments in a statement released Wednesday by the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota.

“I apologize for any hurt I have caused the Jewish community with my remarks regarding the Auschwitz concentration camp and the Tar Sands. That analogy is inappropriate. I grew up with stories of the Holocaust and have Jewish ancestry. I did not intend to hurt anyone and recognize your concerns. Let us work together for a better future for all,” she said.

Steve Hunegs, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council, thanked LaDuke for “her acknowledgment that her analogy was inappropriate.”

“For decades the JCRC has spoken out against the misuse of the Holocaust in public discourse,” he said. “We’ve done so because contemporary comparisons to Nazis, coming from anywhere on the political spectrum, are almost always historically inaccurate, insult the memory of the Holocaust’s victims and survivors, and are deeply hurtful to most Jews and others whose communities were victimized.”