Synopsis by Clarke Fountain
After World War II, due to a longstanding prior agreement among the victorious Allies, displaced citizens of the various countries were returned to their homeland of origin whether or not they wanted to be. There were almost no exceptions to this rule. As a result, several million anti-communist citizens of Eastern Bloc nations were handed over to the not-so tender mercies of their native countries, now under communist rule. Only one nation in all of Europe failed to honor this agreement: the tiny Duchy of Luxembourg. The story of this film is based on a true incident, and the furor it caused. In 1945, the Russian general (Malcom McDowell) of a small detachment of five hundred Eastern Bloc soldiers who fought on the Axis (German) side, led them into the (neutral) Duchy, which had an announced policy of granting asylum. These refugees were swifly assimilated into the everyday life of the country and, despite enormous pressure from the great military powers of the day (particularly Russia), Luxembourg refused to relinquish them to almost certain death.