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Santorum draws World War II parallel in describing threat facing the nation

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CUMMING, Ga. — In a speech at a megachurch here Sunday night, former senator Rick Santorum (Pa.) used some of his direst imagery yet to describe what’s at stake in this year’s presidential election, drawing an extended World War II analogy that seemed to suggest that the United States faces a threat that is on par with what the world faced in the 1940s.

The Republican candidate told more than 3,000 supporters at the First Redeemer Church:

“Your country needs you. It’s not as clear a challenge. Obviously, World War II was pretty obvious. At some point, they knew. But remember, the Greatest Generation, for a year and a half, sat on the sidelines while Europe was under darkness, where our closest ally, Britain, was being bombed and leveled, while Japan was spreading its cancer all throughout Southeast Asia. America sat from 1940, when France fell, to December of ’41, and did almost nothing.
“Why? Because we’re a hopeful people. We think, ‘Well, you know, he’ll get better. You know, he’s a nice guy. I mean, it won’t be near as bad as what we think. This’ll be okay.’ Oh yeah, maybe he’s not the best guy, and after a while, you found out things about this guy over in Europe, and he’s not so good of a guy after all. But you know what? Why do we need to be involved? We’ll just take care of our own problems. Just get our families off to work and our kids off to school, and we’ll be okay.
“It’s sort of the optimistic spirit of America but sometimes, sometimes it’s not okay. It’s going to be harder for this generation to figure this out. There’s no cataclysmic event. It’s going to be hard. You understand it — you’re here. You wouldn’t be here if you didn’t get it. But what about the rest of America, do they understand what’s happening? Is anybody telling them what’s happening? Is anybody reminding us who we are, what made us great, and what these assaults are all about — to clear the way?”

The provocative comparison comes one day after Santorum created a stir when he told a tea party rally in Columbus, Ohio, that President Obama supports a “phony theology — not a theology based on the Bible.” Santorum has since clarified that he thinks Obama is a Christian and was not describing his religious beliefs as “phony.”

A Santorum spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the latest remarks Sunday night.

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