UNICEF draws parallels between the Syrian refugee crisis today and the refugees of World War II in a very personal way, in a spot that directly contrasts the stories of an elderly man, Harry, and a young Syrian boy, Ahmed.
The ad, by 180 Amsterdam, splits the screen showing images illustrating their strikingly similar stories side by side -- both escaped peril to leave their countries and crossed the sea in a treacherous journey by boat before finally reaching safety. The film incorporates contemporary images of Syrian refugee struggles, as well as historical footage from World War II. That they both made it in the end, and were welcomed, is particularly topical and poignant in the wake of recent events including President Trump's immigration ban on refugees from Syria.
The online film, directed by Joshua Neale at Smuggler, is running across UNICEF's YouTube page and social channels. Paloma Escudero, UNICEF Director of Communications, said in a statement: "We hope that this video will serve as a reminder that behind the headlines are the stories of individual children. Not refugees, not migrants, but children, whose only hope is for safety, and the chance of a brighter future."