MSNBC Analyst: Trump Flying Flags at Half-Mast Until 8/8 Is Nod to Neo-Nazis

Figliuzzi: 'Numbers 8-8 together stand for Heil Hitler ... No one is thinking about this'

August 7, 2019

MSNBC analyst Frank Figliuzzi drew a numerical connection on Monday between neo-Naziism and the Trump administration's decision to fly flags at half-mast until Aug. 8 in honor of the victims of a pair of mass shootings.

Figliuzzi is a former FBI assistant director who has been feted for predicting last month that white supremacist violence was potentially imminent due to President Trump's rhetoric. In an interview with host Brian Williams, Figliuzzi ripped Trump for not using the first-person voice to condemn white supremacism in an address on Monday, given the anti-immigrant motives of the killer in El Paso, Texas.

Part of countering the adversary of white supremacism, he said, was in understanding the significance of how they think. While he wouldn't accuse Trump of purposefully flying flags until Aug. 8, he also darkly wondered who wrote the speech.

"If we don't understand how they think, we'll never understand how to counter them," he said. "The president said that we will fly our flags at half mast, until August 8. That’s 8/8. Now, I’m not going to imply that he 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 numbers 88 are very significant in neo-Nazi and white supremacy movement. Why? Because the letter ‘H’ is the eighth letter of the alphabet, and to them the numbers 8-8 together stand for ‘Heil Hitler.’ So we’re going to be raising the flag back up at dusk on 8/8."

"No one is thinking about this," he added.

Williams was wowed by this analysis.

"I know you’re keeping your options open there, Frank, but as chilling as that is to hear, you’re saying it’s possible that someone who knows better is authoring or editing the words that show up and are read verbatim, or are supposed to be read verbatim, by the president," he said.

"I'm concerned about who is writing his script and his speeches and what would fascinate me is what he's rejecting," Figliuzzi said. "So it's possible that several iterations of this speech were given to him. Someone with expertise—and believe me, the expertise exists in our intelligence community and our law enforcement community and our civilian population in how to counter radicalization. Those folks could have advised him on writing an excellent speech that would have created an obstacle on this path to violence that we're on. But he either chose to not take that advice, or he's not even willing to solicit the advice."

Figliuzzi is a frequent guest on Deadline: White House, whose host, Nicolle Wallace, had to apologize this week after saying Trump was talking about "exterminating Latinos."