New York Post – by Bruce Golding
A former FBI official floated a theory on MSNBC that neo-Nazis may be heartened by President Trump’s order to fly the nation’s flags at half-staff through Thursday evening to commemorate the victims of this past weekend’s mass shootings.
Frank Figliuzzi, now a national security analyst for the cable news channel, said the shorthand version of the Aug. 8 end date for Trump’s proclamation can be interpreted as a coded salute to Adolf Hitler.
“The numbers eight-eight are very significant in the neo-Nazi and the white supremacy movement,” Figliuzzi said Monday night on “The 11th Hour with Brian Williams.”
“Why? Because the letter ‘H’ is the eighth letter of the alphabet, and to them, the numbers eight-eight stand for ‘Heil Hitler.’ ”
Figliuzzi, who led worldwide counterintelligence investigations as an FBI assistant director, insisted he wasn’t suggesting that Trump “did this deliberately, but I am using it as an example of the ignorance of the adversary that’s being demonstrated by the White House.”
“The president’s either getting really good advice and rejecting it, or he’s getting really bad advice,” he said.
“We have to understand the adversary and the threat we’re dealing with, and if we don’t understand how they think we’ll never understand how to counter them, so it’s the little things and the language and messaging that matters.”
Conservative commentator and author Ann Coulter mocked Figliuzzi’s analysis of the possible hidden message, tweeting: “WINNER! Craziest thing ever said on TV: MSNBC regular Frank Figliuzzi claims that Trump ordering flags at half mast until Thursday was secret ‘HEIL HITLER!’ signal.”
In response, Figliuzzi told Coulter, “Dear craziest person on TV, listen carefully; I clearly said I’m not saying Trump did this deliberately, I’m saying he needs advice on how extremists will interpret raising the flag on 8/8. He needs advice on putting out the fire he started. Are you part of that solution?”
In Trump’s Sunday proclamation, he said that “Our Nation mourns with those whose loved ones were murdered in the tragic shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, and we share in the pain and suffering of all those who were injured in these two senseless attacks.”
Trump also condemned the mass shootings as “hateful and cowardly acts” and said lowering Old Glory through sunset on Thursday would be “a mark of solemn respect for the victims of the terrible acts of violence.”