It is often claimed that Europe must accept refugees because the Middle East and Africa has accepted European refugees during World War 2.

But are there any precise statistics to show how many refugees were accepted by sovereign countries in those regions? Obviously it has to exclude territories that were European colonies at the time since those didn't really have a say in external matters.

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    @JonathanReez: no idea why you added this particular citation. It's interesting but it doesn't in the slightest support the "Europe must accept refugees because" claim you're making. – Denis de Bernardy Aug 5 '17 at 9:03
  • @Denis the claims are implicit rather than explicit. – JonathanReez Aug 5 '17 at 9:08
  • In any case my question is valid even without the claims part. – JonathanReez Aug 5 '17 at 9:08
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    Important differences are: a) many ME and African countries were not independent to chose how many refugees to accept b) the technologies of the day and the scale of the war made massive movement of civilians very difficult c) those who would have had more "incentives" to move away (Jews, Roma, etc.) were not allowed to do so... It is an "apples to oranges" comparation. – SJuan76 Aug 5 '17 at 10:29
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    @SJuan76 I agree, which is why I think the shaming of Europeans through WWII history is completely idiotic – JonathanReez Aug 5 '17 at 10:35

This is anecdotal, and I have no idea how widespread it was, but there were several German and Austrian Jewish academics who fled to Turkey in the 1930's (Or at any rate, found themselves in Turkey then.) Among them Richard von Mieses, Hilde Geiringer (mathematicians), Hans Güterbock (Hittitologist), Elizabeth Ettinghausen (Islamic & Byzantine art).

Turkey, at the time, was eager to import Western culture and many of the particular refugees I name took jobs in Turkish universities, where they must have enjoyed an approximation to civilized life, a life so absent then in their native countries.

Although this topic is of only peripheral interest to me I did spend a few minutes poking around. Wikipedia, of course, has its say, with references. The upbeat how-turkey-saved-jewish-lives fills in detail that probably covers the instances I mentioned to above. The review of a book Turkey, the Jews and the Holocaust by Corry Guttstadt points to an existing body of scholarship on the issue of Turkey and the Holocaust. The matter is far more complex and contentious than indicated in the previous web site.

  • Turkey is a bit different since there aren't any Turkish refugees in this conflict. But a good data point! – JonathanReez Aug 5 '17 at 14:00

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