Amongst the waves of coverage that the plight of refugees have been receiving in the media, there seems to be an issue that is being simply ignored and brushed under the carpet. Why are they migrating in the first place? The majority to have entered the EU in recent days are Syrians and whilst the world gasped in shock at the photo of a drowned toddler washed ashore, there has been no action from the governments of countries who are normally so eager to interfere in the affairs of others. Instead, European countries are beginning to worry about how the influx will affect them and it is only due to this one single photo that the widespread negative attitude to refugees has abated a little. However, I have a feeling this will not last. As the numbers increase, as surely they will, you will begin to hear mutterings of ‘no space’ or ‘no jobs.’
The issue that is being ignored is what can be done to make the native countries of refugees safer in the first place. The Syrian crisis which has claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocent people appears to be something that world leaders do not want to deal with. The evil of the Assad regime and ISIS has turned the country into a place unsafe for the people caught in the middle, those who reject the dictatorship of Assad and deny the evil of ISIS. Yet, nothing is being done to help them. On one side, you have Russia vetoing any UN decision to deal with their friend Assad, whilst on the other there is no desire to forcefully deal with ISIS. A couple of airstrikes are certainly not going to make them go away when they have managed to get their hands on a vast array of weapons and land.
So the everyday human is left stranded. Caught between no-man’s land as he desperately seeks refuge. This is why these fleeing people cannot be dismissed as migrants. Whilst their decision to head for the more economically strong countries may suggest otherwise, that they are simply economic migrants, their key decision to throw themselves and their children into flimsy little boats is because remaining behind must surely be worse. Their decision to choose Germany or other such wealthier nations is simply common sense. There they are more likely to receive help.
Another issue which has dumbfounded many is the lack of action from Arab countries to provide assistance for Syrian refugees. Surely they should be the first to provide help? No one is really willing to take responsibility and by that I mean each country’s government. The individual citizen is compassionate, welcoming and it has been beautiful to see people going out of their way to help those refugees who have no one else to turn to. However these are temporary solutions and the only end to the crisis is for the root cause of the refugees fleeing to be dealt with. Otherwise the domino effect of crisis upon crisis will soon spiral out of control.
Until Next Time
A Worried Student