ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER has branded Donald Trump the “worst president ever” in a powerful statement issued in reaction to the riots witnessed in the US capital.
In a lengthy video posted to Twitter, the former Governor of California called for unity in his adopted homeland ahead of Joe Biden’s confirmation as President.
The Terminator actor also expressed his dismay at the violent scenes that unfolded in Washington DC this week as Trump supporters stormed the Capitol Building.
Five people died, including one police officer, during the ensuing unrest.
Schwarzenegger used the speech to draw a parallel between the unsettling scenes and the ones that played out in 1930s Germany.
“As an immigrant to this country, I would like to say a few words to my fellow Americans, and to our friends around the world about the events of recent days,” he said.
“I grew up in Austria, he began. “I’m very aware of Kristallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass.
“It was night of rampage against the Jews carried out in 1938 by the Nazi equivalent of the Proud Boys.
“Wednesday was the Day of Broken Glass right here in the United States.
“The broken glass was in the windows of the United States Capitol.
“But the mob did not just shatter the windows of the Capitol, they shattered the ideas we took for granted.
“They did not just break down the doors of the building that housed American democracy; they trampled the very principles on which our country was founded.”
My message to my fellow Americans and friends around the world following this week's attack on the Capitol. pic.twitter.com/blOy35LWJ5
— Arnold (@Schwarzenegger) January 10, 2021
Schwarzenegger cast scorn on those involved in the riots before recalling his own upbringing in Austria followed the conclusion Second World War.
“I grew up in the ruins of a country that suffered the loss of its democracy,” he said.
“I was born in 1947, two years after the Second World War. Growing up, I was surrounded by broken men drinking away the guilt over their participation in the most evil regime in history.
“Not all of them were rabid anti-Semites or Nazis, many just went along, step-by-step, down the road.
“They were the people next-door.”
He recalled how his father and neighbours had been left troubled by their experience and memories of a war orchestrated by leaders who rose to power off the back of lies and hatred.
Schwarzenegger said: “It all started with lies, and lies, and lies and intolerance. Being from Europe I have seen firsthand how things can spin out of control.
“I know there is a fear in this country and all over the world that something like this could happen right here.
“Now, I do not believe it is, but I do believe that we must be aware of the dire consequences of selfishness and cynicism.
“President Trump sought to overturn the results of an election and of a fair election.
“He sought a coup by misleading people with lies. My father and our neighbours were also mislead with lies, and I know where such lies lead.
“President Trump is a failed leader. He will go down in history as the worst president ever.
“The good thing is he will soon be as irrelevant as an old tweet,” he said of the disgraced president.
“But what are we to make of those elected officials who have enabled his lies and his treachery?
“I will remind them of what Teddy Roosevelt said, ‘Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president.’
“A number of members of my own party, because of their own spinelessness will never see their names in such a book, I guarantee you.
“They’re complicit with this who carried the flag of self-righteous insurrection into the Capitol. But it did not work. Our democracy held firm.”
He called on the US public to come together ahead of a new chapter under president-elect Joe Biden, who he personally pledged his support to.