Today Doesn’t Feel So Hopeful

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Graffiti in Mytilene

I am heartbroken, like so many others, that Europe today adopted an illegal and inhumane agreement to deport refugees from Greece to Turkey.

Turkey has serious human rights problems and provides no protections for refugees or migrants. Refugees who land on Lesvos consistently refer to the abuse they suffered at the hands of Turkish authorities.  An estimated 3 million refugees and migrants will now be at the mercy of the Turkish government, which has recently has stepped up its persecution of dissidents, has taken over the state’s most important news media and is suspected of supporting ISIL’s illegal oil trade. The Turkish government, described as “on a path to dictatorship,” will receive $6 billion from the EU, most of which will probably be spent on guns and police to manage some of the most vulnerable people on earth.

It was sickening to watch the news reports showing Europe’s most privileged elites congratulate themselves for selling more than three million people down the river in an agreement Amnesty International describes as a “dark day in Europe” and Oxfam calls “a further step down the path of inhumanity.”  If there was ever a single act that will create terrorists, this “deal” is it.

The US is silent.

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10 comments

  1. Dear Kim,
    This is a very sad day for the world community. Thank you for being there to witness it — and to bring basic humanity to those who need it most.

  2. If the EU members are really concerned about migrants, why don’t they do a lot more to solve the root of their issue: the war in Syria? As long as planes bomb fruit markets, beleaguered families will flee. When Assad can no longer use his own people as pawns in his struggle to maintain power, there is a much better chance that the flow of refugees will slow. This is not to say that the process would be simple, or that removing Assad in some way would be a panacea, but they’re addressing the symptom rather than the cause.

    1. Right although Europe probably cannot do much about the war in Syria until the US stops bombing Syrian neighborhoods and stops arming three sides of a five-sided war. The US should be a voice of moral authority but has been strangely quiet about this crisis in which it is implicated in so many ways.

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