The U.S. and the Holocaust is a three-part, six-hour series that tells the story of how the American people grappled with one of the greatest humanitarian crises of the twentieth century, and how this struggle tested the ideals of our democracy.
The Golden Door (Beginnings - 1938)
After decades of open borders, a xenophobic backlash prompts the United States to pass laws restricting immigration. In Germany, Hitler finds support for his anti-Semitic rhetoric, and the Nazis begin their persecution of Jewish people, causing many to flee to neighbouring countries or America. Franklin D Roosevelt and other world leaders are concerned by the growing refugee crisis, but they fail to coordinate a response.
Yearning to Breathe Free (1938 - 1942)
After Kristallnacht, Germany's Jews are desperate to escape Hitler's tyranny. Americans are united in their disapproval of the Nazis' brutality, but remain divided on whether and even how to act as World War II begins. Charles Lindbergh speaks for isolationists, while FDR tries to support Europe's democracies. The Nazis invade the Soviet Union, and the Holocaust begins in secret.
The Homeless Tempest Tossed (1942 -)
The first reports of the killing reach the United States. A group of dedicated government officials establish the War Refugee Board to finance and support rescue operations. As the Allies advance, soldiers uncover mass graves and liberate German concentration camps, revealing the sheer scale and horror of the Holocaust. The danger of its reverberations soon become apparent.