On the 27th January, the world commemorated Holocaust Memorial Day. On the  same day, Donald Trump announced yet another executive order that disrespects the human rights doctrine; this time a ban on refugees from Muslim countries to enter the US (commonly referred to as the Muslim Ban[1]).

Already, a day later, there were news of airlines refusing passengers on flights, and people turned away in airports across the USA. [2]Another of that day’s events was a joint press conference held by Theresa May and Donald Trump, in which both leaders signaled strengthening of the “Special Relationship” [3] between the USA and UK and a state visit of Trump to the UK was announced.[4] Theresa May, repeatedly, refused to condemn the Muslim Ban. [5]

There is only one way to understand special relationships – that is the strengthening international collaborations against racism and hate. When the President-Elect of the USA is commencing on all too familiar path of fascism the people of Britain must not go along with him, and resist: in the parliament and on the streets.  Donald Trump should not be welcome to the UK until refugees – from everywhere – are welcome to the USA.

I am a Jewess, and a granddaughter of a Jewess who fled Germany in the 1930s and survived thanks to help of British officials. I am also a human rights activist who was educated in politics standing in solidarity with the people of Palestine. History has taught us we cannot afford to wait before we create this special relationship of resistance. Because history has taught us that nobody is free until everyone is free.

One of the most famous victims of the Holocaust, Anne Frank, was denied access (with her family) to the USA in 1941. [6] She wrote: “I keep my ideals, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. Whoever is happy will make others happy too.” It is our duty, and moral imperative, to work together internationally so that our world’s Anne Franks[7] survive and thrive in a way that she was not able to.

Let us close the doors of Britain to Donald Trump as long as he closes the doors of America to refugees. We must, as Anne tells us, not wait a single moment before we start to improve the world.

[1] https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/27/us/politics/trump-syrian-refugees.html?_r=0

[2] http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/muslim-travellers-turned-away-after-9710308

[3] http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/01/theresa-may-and-trump-begin-their-special-relationship.html

[4] http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/27/politics/theresa-may-donald-trump-state-visit-uk/index.html

[5] http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/theresa-may-donald-trump-immigration-ban-muslim-turkey-refugee-refuses-to-condemn-latest-a7551121.html

[6] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2015/11/24/anne-frank-and-her-family-were-also-denied-entry-as-refugees-to-the-u-s/?utm_term=.f365745b6c23

[7] https://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/25/opinion/anne-frank-today-is-a-syrian-girl.html

Dana Mills

Dr. Dana Mills is an academic and an activist. She has held positions in New York University, Bard College, New York, Oxford University and Oxford Brookes. Her first book: Dance and Politics: Moving beyond Boundaries was published In 2016 by Manchester University Press. .