The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, recently criticized UK and other European politicians for their stance on the refugee crisis, citing parallels to rhetoric used pre-World War II when world powers seemed to turn their backs on German and Austrian Jews.
Recently, British Prime Minister David Cameron referred to migrants in Calais, France as a “swarm of people” and UK Home Secretary, Theresa May, has also said mass migration made it “impossible to build a cohesive society.”
“It’s just a political issue that is being ramped up by those who can use the excuse of even the smallest community as a threat to the sort of national purity of the state,” says Mr. Al Hussein. “If you just look back to the Evian conference and read through the intergovernmental discussion, you will see that there were things that were said that were very similar.”
In the summer of 1938, delegates from thirty-two countries, including the United States, met at the French resort of Evian where they decided not to take in Jewish refugees fleeing Hitler, on the grounds that they might destabilize societies and strain economies. Sound familiar?