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What America Owes the Refugees Pouring Into Europe


What America Owes the Refugees Pouring Into Europe

Phyllis Bennis

The vision of hundreds of thousands of desperate human beings fleeing airstrikes, terror, and violence from Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and beyond has brought the stark human cost of today’s “anti-terror” wars to the front pages. The heart-breaking photo of one small boy, still clad in a “red shirt, blue jeans, and little sneakers,” as a now-viral poem goes, washed up on the Turkish shore, has brought the horror of that stark reality into our hearts.


Obama's concession to allow for the acceptance of 10.000 reffugees within the US is an outright slap into the face of the world! The USA under G.W. Bush and under B. Obama have caused the disintegration of Iraq and Syria as well of several Maghreb states and the Ukraine with full deliberation. Today, German politicians have stated that the influx of migrants into Germany will surpass 1 million this year alone. This immense challenge will definitely totally overburden the integration potential of this country. Many many more are on their way to Germany and Sweden. At the same time All the members of Bush's infamous "coalition of the willing", especially Great Britain, Canada, Australia, Poland, the Check Republic, etc. are closing their borders. Not only the so called Western world of common values is just about to collaps, also Europe which was meant to be a haven of human rights is currently falling to pieces.
Is that what you wanted, Americans? If yes, your country is the most rotten nation in this world, a disgrace to mankind - if no, your politicians and leading oligarchy is a bunch of criminals, worse than IS, Al Quaida, Boko Haram or Taliban.


yeah right, what about the millions of peoples already here homeless, unemployed, lack of medical care, shelters are full, lack of food, so we give first preference to these peoples, with housing,medical,jobs,etc, Americans comes first regardless of other peoples, the violence in this country will each more epidemic proportions


Super, smarwil, you leave the desasters you created by YOUR Hoorays to Bush II to the rest of the world. You belong to one of the richest countries in this world (measured according to your military expense and CO2 footprint - not according to the life expectation of your own people - you ARE the leading wolf in the world), however you leave all the filth, dirt, misery, blood and pain to the rest of the world. And it is certainly not only your own disgusting oligarchy who is responsible, it is also people like YOU, smarwil, who even support them.


There's no money to improve the lives of poor Americans because the powers that be are spending it on interfering with other countries on the pretense we are helping those peoples. But look at the people we have helped, the Iraqis, the Libyans, the Syrians, all fleeing the chaos that we have cause by declaring that their leaders must go. We can see that strong arm leaders are pretty much a necessity in cultures where tribal and religious differences can result in violence. Getting rid of these leaders is a win/win for the powers that be. They can support the military industrial economy by providing weapons to the warring faction both before and after terminating these leaders and they can choose a new leader who, in grateful consideration, does whatever we say and will give away their countries' resources to American business interests. Oh, and ingratiate us with the Israelis. But it is a major lose/ lose for the people of those countries. They must live in fear, in chaos, suffer injuries, flee their countries and their livelihoods, even die for our nefarious purposes. Evil and immoral are the only words for the decisions our leaders have made and coninue to make. We demonize ISIS but they are small potatoes compared to US.


Dear Aljoschu: Thank you for your post. I am an American and I have met many people who have no empathy for people who live in other countries. However, I believe that a majority of Americans do not approve of American foreign policy. For example, members of the Japanese high command were hanged at the end of World War II because they had water boarded American prisoners. Waterboarding is a hangable offense. Yet, our leaders admit that they did it and they repeatedly go on television to say they would gladly do it again. They have turned the U.S. into the most despicable nation on earth. And the driving force behind their actions is money. Arms merchants make a lot of money from war. They contribute a lot of money to the politicians so the politicians serve them. I feel like Captain Obvious when I say these things. This is not rocket science. The U.S. government is under the firm control of war criminals. Fascism is on the rise in this country, but we have not yet become the Fourth Reich. However, we are approaching that point and the rest of the world will have to deal with the U.S. in the same way it dealt with the Third Reich. The foolish aggression exhibited by the U.S. government cannot be allowed to continue forever. They know that their actions are just creating more terrorists. And they are happy with that because it keeps the war machine in business. They are psychopaths, and they will reap the whirlwind. Unfortunately, everyone on the planet will be caught up in that whirlwind when it comes.


We ought to stop pursuing an imperialist foreign policy, from that does it follow we ought to accept these migrants?

Hint pick one, more rights for gay people, women, and artistic free expression, or more Muslims who abuse rape victims, limit women's freedom of travel and freedom of association, who and murder dissident artists and gay people, you can't have both.

Note too that more migrants drives down wages for American working people, and in fact is advocated for by such monsters of the ruling class as the Koch brothers. If you don't believe me ask Bernie Sanders what he thinks of unlimited immigration.


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Bernie opposes immigration, you do understand this?


What the American empire owes them is too 100% stop the bombing and withdraw ALL overseas bases. We do not owe them allowing for an unlimited influx of Muslims who tend towards an extremely regressive religion view. Correctly can't stand American Christian fundies who verge on theocracy by trying to force creationism and prayer in schools, and who oppose gay marriage? Muslims are a 100 times worse.


The US cannot systematically take on the world without there being "hell to pay" eventually. Not with nukes, shock and awe (which is blitzkrieg re-branded), petrodollars, or endless lies. This is the lesson of history that all tyrannical empires ignore to their mortal peril.


Why do I think this migrant/refugee crisis is by design? It seems like the massive influx of immigrants into Western Europe would drive the final nail into the coffin of the social welfare state in many if not all of these nations, an outcome no doubt pleasing to the oligarchs here as well as on the other side of the Atlantic.


I have always thought that to be part, A BIG part of the scheme of things- These Fkng Fascist bastards from hell....


Yes, upping the number of fundamentalist religious people in this country does concern me. However, we cannot just continue sit by and allow a humanitarian crisis such as this mass exodus from Syria and vacinity, particularly since our nation's hands are so bloody from having fomented the cause of the troubles they are fleeing. Besides, the way we make enemies in this world is to cast a blind eye to the suffering caused in our names by the leaders we have failed to stop. I believe our doors should be open. What we need, though, is civics training. (ahem, yea, I know, our own populace need this also!). A "what is expected of you (and why) now that you live here" training.

On the other hand, shutting out those in such great need does not seem like it will reduce the threat fundamentalist pose to those who are more broadminded and egalitarian...it may keep THEM off our shores for a while, but likely not indefinitely.

Of course, what really needs to happen is to help to 'fix' what is broken in Syria so the masses do not have to flee. Probably no more possible than 'civics for immigrants', but since when are dreams based on the possible?


Dear zenpracticer, I absolutely agree with you. Especially, since we have been experiencing similar and complementary trends here in Europa. Fundamental national laws have been broken, e.g. by allowing foreign powers (i.e. the USA and Great Britain) to spy on citizens, corporations and even leading government members and to steal intellectual property from us - which clearly indicates: the US and GB are definitely not our friends. I may also mention that very unladylike Mme Nuland who (under the lead of Mr. Obama) literally "fucked us all in Europe" by distroying the hopeful seed of good relations we were beginning to establish with Russia and their president. And instead of those finally improved ralationships the US try to impose on us those crooked TTIP negotiations which even exclude our national parliaments from access to the contents of those devestating contracts.
America, is not only trashing your own God's country and people, it is also wrecking many others in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and turning them into places where Devils reign. And the Devils' craft is done by American weapons.


Sorry, forgot to mention the complementary part: It is our own governments here in Europe who are so opportunistic and gutless, to not even protest against those anglo-saxon encroachments and violations, not in Iraq, not in Syria, not in Libbya and not in the Ukraine. The European foreign policy has degenerated into NATO aggression. And we all have degenerated into a bunch of cowardly vassals. The current "welcome culture" in Germany is nothing less than an honest sense of philanthropy, it is our desperate way of begging the world for recognition after what has occured in that country 70 years ago.


Of course America is responsible for all these refugees pouring into Europe, but to follow the suggestions of the author is totally unrealistic.

"Once they're in the United States, safe and provided with medical care, housing, work, education and other support,........" is a crazy utopia statement.

What about the thousands and thousands of Americans who are homeless, have no healthcare (the ACA leaves many without care because they cannot afford the premiums, deductibles and co-pays), cannot find decent jobs, work for minimum wage, have huge educational debts and do not get any other support? And the author wants to give all those things to the refugees. How is this going to be possible? I am sure businesses will be very happy to get more and more people to work for minimum wage, but how long will they do that? Most of the refugees are young healthy males who will not go along with the abuse very long. Then what?

Actually come to think of it, maybe that's exactly what America needs. A lot of young refugees coming in who after a short while will have the guts to start a real revolution regarding the US wars, abuse of people in other countries etc.


I see a few arguments that even if America is responsible for the immigrant crisis in Europe (it is) America shouldn't own up to its responsibility because we have plenty of our own homeless already, who we don't do a thing for except occasionally provide the food and shelter of jail cells.

After all, they argue, if we can't treat Americans humanely, why should we treat foreigners any differently?

They aren't making stirring calls for reform in America, they aren't even expressing any compassion for those suffering at home and abroad, they simply want to maintain a status quo that says the only thing wrong with people sleeping in the streets is they might impede the flow of shoppers.

Yet these same people could be one job loss or major illness away from being in the streets themselves.

Our lack of compassion for people here in the U.S. is no excuse for not extending a hand to those who've had to become refugees because of U.S. attacks in the Mideast.

Two wrongs still don't make a right.


The Left--progressives--souls with empathy for others who believe in just solutions for a sane and humane world ARE on the rise. So don't be so sure the Fourth Reich will have total dominance. Blowback happens and when it happens through spontaneous events, sudden group actions, and other forms of organically originating "guerilla" behavior... the military is rendered "deer caught in the headlights." Think: Vietnam.


Before the Syrian civil war got started, Syria was not a fundamentalist country. In fact, it had the reputation of being a more or less secular state.It's reasonable to suppose that the people fleeing the country are-for the most part-secular,or Muslim on paper only-not the crazies who are causing you to foul your britches.