Anne Frank’s stepsister said that the Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is “acting like Hitler” and warned that if he were to win the presidency, it would be “a complete disaster.”
Eva Schloss, 86, made the comments in an opinion piece published in Newsweek on Wednesday. Schloss, who survived the Auschwitz concentration camp where her sister was murdered, urged the global community to take more action toward resolving the current refugee crisis.
“This is not just a European problem, it’s a global problem,” she wrote. “If countries as big as the US and Canada would take in more people, then we would get much closer to a solution. If Donald Trump becomes the next president of the US it would be a complete disaster. I think he is acting like another Hitler by inciting racism.”
In December Trump called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States,” drawing anger in the US and around the world.
Millions of refugees, many from Syria, are on the move, heading for Europe by land and sea to escape violent conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa.
Schloss suggested that the situation for Syrian refugees today is more difficult than it was for Jewish refugees in the build-up to World War II because of the culture shock the Middle Eastern migrants face when arriving in the West.
“I was 11 years old when my family first immigrated to Belgium [after Hitler annexed Austria in 1938]. We were treated as if we had come from the moon. I felt as if I wasn’t wanted and that I was different to everybody.
“It is even harder for today’s Syrian refugees who have a very different culture,” she continued. “We were Europeans as well as Jews—we were assimilated. I was shocked that I wasn’t accepted like an ordinary person. I am very upset that today again so many countries are closing their borders. Fewer people would have died in the Holocaust if the world had accepted more Jewish refugees.”
After the end of World War II Anne Frank’s father, Otto, married Fritzi, Eva’s mother, creating the family connection to the young girl whose diary of her experiences hiding from the Nazis in Amsterdam is a renowned work of Holocaust literature.