When We Recognize Yesterday In Today

"Chaos has made wanderers out of 15,000,000 people. These people, not only Jews, torn from their homes will soon command the world's attention. For unless an intelligent situation is found, the dire effects of mass migrations will be felt over and over again during the coming centuries. It is hardly up to the refugees themselves. They are so completely befuddled that only happenstance guides their course."

From "Jews in Exile" by Melville Jacoby, writing as Mel Jack, for the Los Angeles Times on January 14, 1940. As 1939 began, about 70 Jewish people lived in Shanghai, China. As war broke out across Europe, Jews forced to flee the conflict and the Holocaust were turned around by nations all over the world, including the United States. Because of its unique status as an international city, Shanghai was one of the few places to allow refugees to enter, and the city's Jewish population swelled to around 17,000 by the time Mel was there, though, as Mel wrote, the city and its leaders would soon clamp down on this population.

Sound familiar?