Trump spoke at a rally in Claremont, New Hampshire, on Saturday, November 11. Credit:Joseph Prezioso / AFP/ Getty

We’ve all often wondered whether Donald Trump understands the historical import of what comes out of his mouth. He’s so ill-informed, so proudly ignorant, that it’s easy to think that when he hurls a historical insult, he just doesn’t know.

I feel pretty safe in saying that we can now stop giving him the benefit of that particular doubt. His use—twice; once on social media and then repeated in a speech—of the word “vermin” to describe his political enemies cannot be an accident. That’s an unusual word choice. It’s not a smear that one just grabs out of the air. And it appears in history chiefly in one context, and one context only.

Before we get to that, let’s just record what he wrote and said. On Saturday at 10:25 a.m., he posted on Truth Social: “In honor of our great Veterans on Veteran’s Day, we pledge […]

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