Even before the attacks on Paris last Friday, conservatives were screaming for a ban on refugees from Syria, their Islamophobia blinding them to the fact that by taking in these men, women, and especially children in need, we are aiding ISIS’ enemies. This bigoted and hateful anti-Semitic (yes, conservatives, Arabs are Semitic people) attitude, of course, is reminiscent of the United States’ refusal to accept Jewish refugees fleeing Hitler in the period prior to and during World War II.
You’ve probably heard of Anne Frank, a Jewish girl who famously recorded her experiences hiding from the Nazis. What you may not have heard is that she was one of the refugees the United States callously turned away in the early 1940’s. In February, Reuters reported that letters had been discovered showing that Frank’s father, Otto, was seeking help and money to procure a U.S. visa to flee Adolf Hitler.