President Donald Trump’s executive orders concerning U.S. immigration policy and refugees have prompted intense criticism from the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect, the U.S.-based partner of the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam.
The center’s executive director, Steven Goldstein, wrote a long post on Facebook on Wednesday, saying Trump “is beyond the wrong side of history” and warned that he is “driving our nation off a moral cliff.”
“Donald Trump is retracting the promise of American freedom to an extent we have not seen from a President since Franklin Roosevelt forced Japanese Americans into internment camps during World War II,” Goldstein wrote. “Today the Statue of Liberty weeps over President Trump's discrimination.”
The organization has also posted heated messages from its Twitter account.
Trump on Wednesday signed an executive order that calls for the immediate construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, and for new aggressive actions to find and deport undocumented immigrants. The New York Times published another draft executive order to indefinitely stop Syrian refugees from entering the United States and ban all refugees from any country for at least 120 days.
Anne Frank’s father, Otto, founded the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect in 1959. During World War II, the Frank family spent two years hiding in a secret annex in Amsterdam before they were found and sent to a concentration camp. Otto Frank was the only member of his family to survive, and after he arranged for his daughter’s diary to be published as Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl, it became of the best-known accounts of Jewish life during the Nazi era.
American University professor Richard Breitman has written about documents that showed the Franks tried to obtain visas to flee to America in 1941, according to the Washington Post, but the family was unsuccessful due to U.S. immigration policies.