One small child washed up on the beach…. (my rambling thoughts…)
This is aggravating. No, no – don’t get me wrong. Yes, the tiny child washing up dead on the beach is absolutely wretched. Like young children the world over, this child was an innocent and completely at the mercy of the adults surrounding it.
What’s deeply aggravating is of course the situation surrounding the whole thing, what caused that child to become dead. Also, the contemporary Syrian crisis started in 2011, affecting over the course of time some 200,000 plus people with thousands dead along the way. What about all the other children, mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters and all their relatives that died in similar circumstances?
The week before this one, poor, dead child washed up on the beach, I was listening to the European Nations talking about closing up borders and turning these refugees away. We here in the U.S. have a bit of geographic buffer where the impact of these refugees is not quite so immediately intense and overwhelming. After this child, and the world’s reaction to this child, now Nations are doing a bit of a major about-face. It’s not going to last and, really, it can’t. No matter the good intentions, re-homing the refugees is not the answer. Housing, yes; re-homing, no.
Being a first generation American from East Germany, I remember well the recounts of World War II survivors including my Mother – may she rest in peace – and what was left of her family – may they rest in peace. I understand the desperation of the refugee fleeing literally for their lives. So to say that re-homing refugees is not the answer, for me is not a light-weight statement in my head. After all, the only reason I was born was because my Mother had escaped East Germany before the “Wall” went up; she wasn’t going to birth children in that world and I don’t blame her at all.
Hundreds of thousands of refugees came to the United States after World War II. Just as many were grieving the loss of thousands of their relatives who had fought and died in World War II, nearly simultaneously arrived these waves of people coming from the very areas their relatives had died. Talk about chaos! Of the people arriving, who were the fleeing “good guys” and who were escaping “bad guys”? How can so many people be medically screened, provided housing and hygiene essentials and food, not to mention acclimating them to language, economics and employment?
We know that taking refugees in takes a lot more than good intentions, donations and making refugees feel welcomed; it takes organizing, work, and money, and a lot of it. Yes, it’s rather unfortunate that nearly everything in this life comes down to economics, but it does. Then, the minute anyone indicates that taxes have to go up in order to pay for social/humanitarian programs, voters throw a collective fit. Of course, that’s understandable as well given the economic expenses of our reality.
Also, the thing about refugees is that most don’t go back home. The Nations know this and I believe that’s part of their resistance to opening their country up to these refugees. Some of these European Nations are struggling to take care of their own, let alone thousands more who bring with them basically only need and more drain on an already struggling system.
There’s just one pot of soup in the kitchen for all the folks who come in; if there’s more people than soup, then everyone goes hungry.
I know my words right now sound a bit cold and callous; it’s not intended to but the situation here is obviously a very difficult one. A terrible situation like this one would be disrespected if painted over with sugar-coating.
Mr. Naguib Sawiris, however, has a great idea.
It’s a great idea but it’s incomplete, and the Nations and everyone knows it. It’s another stop-gap for a much larger, very complex problem. That problem is what to do about the situation in Syria itself.
As more and more refugees leave, who’s being left behind? Stragglers who weren’t able to get on board one these dangerously over-laden, tiny boats that basically drift weeks on end, passengers dying off, as they hope to land on the right shore. And whatever others aside of stragglers that are still there in that embattled region are, well, the “bad guys.”
What needs to happen in that region is what happened to Germany back at the end of World War II. The Nations need to come together and take the place over, strip away every weapon and bomb as much as is possible, and outright cripple the “bad guys.”
Yup, it’s not that easy; I hear you.
Unlike the World War II era Germany, this region isn’t surrounded basically on all sides by Nations unifying against a common “enemy.” I put “enemy” in quotes because there were many Native Germans who were not enemies but instead were victims of that horrible situation. There were others like my Family who weren’t supportive of Hitler or that Party in any shape, fashion or form, who did what they could to help others escape, who watched devastated and helpless as their families, homes, and their whole reality was dying a brutal death. Yes, today’s and yesterday’s refugees are, for all intent and purpose, the same.
Between the intention of trying to respect other countries and their respective cultures, Russia backing some of the “bad guys” and the “bad guys” themselves, the Syrian situation is quite complex. What Russia wants though is easy – they want fuel, simple as that. If the Nations can come together and, by careful negotiation, give Russia the fuel it ultimately wants – for what other reason could there possibly be for Russia to have any interest in people not of its own lands, honestly? – then maybe progress can be made to end the destruction and death program currently there. Secure one section of land at a time, neutralize the “bad guys” one at a time, and with each section neutralized, those who had flown away could return. Would they return though? History tells us probably not, at least not without some kind of encouraging force helping to direct them back home.
To be sure, a neutralizing and land-securing program would also be expensive, very tricky and exceptionally dangerous. However, as far as I can see, it is about the only way there is to resolve the death and destruction situation that is today’s problem with Syria. Yes, I hear you – Syria is certainly and unfortunately not the only Nation over there that has serious problems. Nobody, myself included, wants to again get into the middle of that deadly hornet’s nest of a mess over there. But those who are now the refugees couldn’t fix the problems, and that’s why they ran making their problem even more the World’s problem than it was before. So I have a hunch some kind of neutralizing program is what we’re going to see happen there next.
Let’s hope and pray that in the process of trying to fix that problem, things aren’t somehow made even worse.