One of the aspects in the prelude to war and the holocaust was a European and American refusal to accept fleeing Jews that sought shelter and safety from the hands of the Nazi thugs that persecuted them.

Some of the most shameful acts of this time was that not only did the rest of Europe and the West not realise the seriousness of the situation, but anti-Semitism made countries close the borders specifically for the Jews.

One illustrative episode that will have to retell many such incidents all over the world was the futile attempt of the liner MS St Louis to find harbour with the 930 Jewish refugees that were aboard. Cuba, Canada and the United States refused the passengers entry until the liner had to return to Europe. Many of the passengers would end up in the Nazi concentration camps. As one Canadian immigration official put it: “None is too many”.

With history as a guide, and with that shame a blight on the record, let us not make the same mistake again, and let the EU and America open its borders to LGBT persons that flee Russia. Let the message go out to all who suffer: you are safe here with us. We are not perfect, and our nations have its own issues with homosexuality, but our officials and our governments will not harm you.

If Russia persist in embracing the savage ideologies of fascism and Nazism that so many of her people died to shield Russia from, then let us wash out a little of the blight that stain our histories by opening the borders to the needing. Open our embassies in Moscow to those that suffer, and to those that must flee.

Let us, if the worst comes to worst and the savage rise in Russia to rule, when history records our role not have it be known that we, once again, closed our borders to the refugees of the new holocaust. Maybe then our consciences would be a little bit better about the last time that happened, knowing that we had overcome our own inner savagery.

Let us get it right this time.

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