The 86 year-old Eva Schloss, who happens to be Anne Frank’s stepsister, recently made a drastic statement that many journalists and reporters seem to have been fearing for a while now: Donald Trump’s actions and proposed policies are similar to those of Adolf Hitler’s leading up to and during his reign.
The comparison was made in an essay Schloss published in yesterday’s issue of Newsweek in observance of International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
“If Donald Trump become the next president of the U.S. it would be a complete disaster. I think he is acting like another Hitler by inciting racism.”
“I remember how upset the world was when the Berlin Wall was erected in 1961 and now everybody is building walls again to keep people out. It’s absurd.”
On his radio show just a few days ago, well-known political commentator Glenn Beck commented on the similarity to Adolf Hitler’s road to power.
“That’s why you should be freaking out,” Beck said. “[Trump]’s talking about populism and nationalism. If you add socialism – populism, nationalism, and socialism – you have the makings of another Adolf Hitler.”
Or look at former New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman’s interview with CNN on December 9.
“If you go and look at your history and you read your history, in the lead-up to the Second World War, this is the kind of rhetoric that allowed Hitler to move forward. Because you have people who were scared the economy was bad, they want someone to blame.”
Or read through the in-depth essay entitled “5 Ways Donald Trump Perfectly Mirrors Hitler’s Rise To Power” published at Cracked.
And who can forget the video that went viral back in November in which Donald Trump balked when asked by a reporter how a database requiring all Muslims to register with the government would differ from Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany requiring Jews to register?
In her Newsweek essay, Schloss also likened the large amount of Syrian refugees in the modern world to the large amount of European refugees in the time of Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich.
“We haven’t really learnt anything,” she said. “I’m depressed by the current situation. The experience of the Syrian refugees is similar to what we went through.”
She then called out not only America, but all the countries not allowing Syrian refugees to enter.
“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.”
The Donald Trump-Adolf Hitler-Nazi Germany comparison is popular, but is it a bit too harsh?
“These repeated comparisons are as ignorant of history as they are offensive to those of us who lost ancestors in the Holocaust,” writes Huffpost. “Trump’s ideology is substantively different than that espoused by Hitler. Trump is less likely to win than Hitler was. And if Trump wins, the result will not be the same as Hitler’s regime.”
Those who decry the comparison point out that Trump has only really spoken out about Muslim immigrants, while Adolf Hitler opposed Jews in general, no matter where or how they lived.
In addition, they add, Trump could not enforce the more extreme policies that have spurred on the comparison even if he was elected for the simple reason that the American Constitution would never allow such drastic changes as those made during Adolf Hitler’s office.
[Photo by Heinrich Hoffmann/Getty Images and Scott Gries/Getty Images]