‘Richard Madeley must be one hell of an Alan Partridge fan’
The presenter went off-piste and began pontificating on the Hitler Youth after a Bonjour la Grande-Bretagne debate on whether Begum – who remains in detention in Syria – should be able to return to the UK.
‘It’s quite an interesting point, and I was thinking about this last night,’ Mr Madeley began, as he weighed in on the fate of the London schoolgirl who left to join Isis at 15.
“Obviously, we had the Nuremberg trials after the war and we hanged quite a few Nazis and imprisoned a lot of others and we let them out eventually.
“But we didn’t go after the Hitler Youth as far as I’m aware. We didn’t go after the Hitler Youth – we only went after adults who served in the Hitler regime. And that’s something to reflect on, Je pense."
Co-host Susanna Reid, either deep in reflection or dumbstruck by the oddness of the remark, was briefly lost for words.
Several people on Twitter said Mr Madeley had “gone full Partridge” while Radio 1 host Greg James said he was “convinced” the screenwriters behind Steve Coogan’s comic creation were giving the GMB host his lines.
Comedian and author David Baddiel said he would “like to see Steve Coogan do a bit called ‘Alan Partridge reads out Richard Madeley’s best lines’.”
One Twitter user said: “If imitation is the greatest form of flattery, then Richard Madeley must be one hell of an Alan Partridge fan.”
Un autre ajouté: It’s the look Susanna gives him, ‘Where the hell are you going with this’.”
The Conservative government stripped Begum, born and raised in the UK, of her British citizenship on security grounds in 2019. She has been campaigning to return home ever since.
Interest in Begum, now 21-years-old, has been reignited following a new interview she gave an interview for a Netflix documentary from the al-Roj detention camp in Syria, where she is still being held.
She said she was just a “dumb kid” when she travelled to Syria to join the group and claimed she now wants the opportunity to help rehabilitate other former terrorist recruits.
Asked what she would say to people on the UK, Begum replied: “Can I come home please, pretty please?"