A guide to the worst refugee crisis since WWII

Middle East
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The world is witnessing the largest refugee crisis since the horrors of World War II.

Today there are close to 60 million war refugees, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)—“an all-time high as violence and persecution” around the world are on the rise.

CREDIT: UNHCR

CREDIT: UNHCR

The Middle East, North Africa, and Western Asia are particularly hard hit. Millions of refugees from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen are fleeing violence and war in their countries.

In all of 2014, approximately 219,000 people tried to cross the Mediterranean to seek asylum in Europe. In just the first eight months of 2015, over 300,000 refugees tried to cross the sea, according to the UNHCR. More than 2,500 died.

Human rights organizations warn the Gulf states, Israel, Iran, and Russia—all of which have taken zero refugees—along with the US, Canada, and Europe—which have taken few—are not doing enough to provide refuge to the asylum-seekers.

CREDIT: Sakis Mitrolidis / AFP

CREDIT: Sakis Mitrolidis / AFP

The majority of the refugees are from Syria. More than four million Syrian refugees are registered with the UN. Another seven million have been internally displaced. Over half of the entire population of the country has been uprooted since 2011.

Because Syrians comprise the bulk of refugees, the plights of other refugees have scarcely been reported on. Governments are essentially only considering taking asylum-seekers from war-torn Syria, embroiled for over four years now in intense violence.

The Syrian Civil War has resulted in what is often referred to as “the worst refugee crisis of our generation.” Using statistics from the UN, news reports, and the University of California, Berkeley, Statista details how the Syrian refugee crisis compares to other refugee crises in the past few decades:

Credit: Statista

Credit: Statista

In terms of sheer scale, the Syrian refugee crisis is significantly worse than those resulting from the US and Soviet wars in Afghanistan, the Gulf War, the genocide in Rwanda, the NATO bombing of Kosovo, and more.

Credit: Middle East Eye

Credit: Middle East Eye

Most of the refugees from Syria are youths. Middle East Eye reports 51% of Syrian asylum-seekers are under age 18, and 39% are under age 11. In other words, two out of every five Syrian refugees are children under age 11.

The story that brought much of this suffering to the attention of the Western media was that of Aylan Kurdi, a three-year-old Syrian Kurd refugee whose lifeless body washed up on a Turkish beach. The photo of his tiny figure went viral, and has become a symbol of the refugee crisis.

Kurdi’s family say they applied for asylum in Canada, yet the Canadian government denied their application. The immigration ministry says the family’s application “was returned as it was incomplete.”

The crisis has also emboldened racists to be open with their anti-Arab bigotry. German neo-Nazis have attacked refugees and shelters created for asylum-seekers. “Europe responds to desperate refugees with razor wire and racism,” the Washington Post writes.

Here is a guide to the worst refugee crisis since World War II, with information about every country you need to know.

Syria’s Neighbors

The vast preponderance of Syrian refugees have been taken by Syria’s neighbors.

CREDIT: Mercy Corps

CREDIT: Mercy Corps

Turkey has taken the most, close to 2 million.

The tiny nation of Lebanon has accepted over 1.1 million Syrian refugees, who now comprise almost one-fifth of its entire population.

Jordan has accepted around 630,000. Approximately one in every 13 people in Jordan is a Syrian refugee.

CREDIT: Forbes / Statista

CREDIT: Forbes / Statista

Lebanon and Jordan now have the most refugees per capita in the world.

In spite of the brutal war being waged inside of its own borders and the growth of ISIS, Iraq has also taken in almost 250,000 Syrian refugees. Most were welcomed by Iraqi Kurdistan, in the north.

US

The US has fueled the conflicts in all five of the nations from which most refugees are fleeing, and it is directly responsible for the violence in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya.

The US’ over a decade-long war in and occupation of Iraq resulted in the deaths of at least a million people, greatly weakened the government, brought al-Qaeda into the country, and led to the rise of ISIS. Over 3.3 million people in Iraq have been displaced because of ISIS.

In Afghanistan, US occupation is ongoing and the war is escalating, in spite of Obama’s constant insistence that it would end by 2014. There are 2.6 million Afghan refugees, according to the UN.

The US-led NATO bombing of Libya destroyed the government, fomenting chaos that led to the rise of ISIS affiliates in northern Africa. Many thousands of Libyans are now fleeing the country, often on dangerous smuggler boats and rafts. The UN estimates there are over 360,000 displaced Libyans.

A coalition of Middle Eastern nations, led by Saudi Arabia, has pummeled Yemen for half a year, leading to the deaths of over 4,500 people. The US has steadfastly backed the coalition, in spite of human rights organizations accusing it of war crimes, including the intentional targeting of civilians and aid buildings. As a result, the UN says there are over 330,000 displaced Yemenis.

CREDIT: Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

CREDIT: Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

In Syria, from which most of the refugees are coming, the US has provided weapons to rebels fighting the government. Since the rise of ISIS, however, the US government has talked much less about toppling Assad, and some have reported “the US and the government of President Bashar al-Assad have even reached an uncomfortable tacit alliance.”

Despite the US role in the Syrian war, it is taken very few refugees. In the over four years of the war, the US government has given asylum to just 1,500 Syrians.

Politicians from both major parties agree the US needs to step up and do its part. Even Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, whose campaign relies heavily on anti-immigrant racism and xenophobia, said the government should take more Syrian refugees. “I hate the concept of it, but on a humanitarian basis, you have to,” Trump stated.

The Obama administration announced it would take 10,000 refugees. Critics argue this is not nearly adequate enough, pointing out that Germany, which has one-fourth of the US population, plans on taking 800,000 refugees in 2015 alone, 80 times more than the US.

Gulf States

Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Oman, and Kuwait are by far the richest nations in the region, because of the gargantuan oil reserves they reside on. Yet they have not taken any refugees.

CREDIT: Artist Mahmoud Abbas

CREDIT: Artist Mahmoud Abbas

The Gulf states have funded rebels in the Syrian war. Wealthy donors from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Kuwait have funded many extremists, including those linked to al-Qaeda and ISIS.

Analysts say the Gulf states fear political instability if they accept refugees. All the Gulf nations are authoritarian monarchies in which citizens have little-to-no say about their governance. Moreover, the vast majority of the workforce in the Gulf states—including 99.5% of workers in the UAE—consist of foreigners, largely from South Asia, who are only given temporary residency. An influx of refugees could reinvigorate the protests that shook the nations during the Arab Spring, or could anger the exploited workers who are not granted citizenship.

The refusal of the rich Gulf states which have helped fund the war in Syria to take any refugees led to widespread outrage. Omani artist Salim al-Salami released a painting depicting Gulf men looking over the dead body of three-year-old Syrian Kurd refugee Aylan Kurdi:

A painting by Omani artist Salim al-Salami

A painting by Omani artist Salim al-Salami

Critics have also pointed out hypocrisy in spending and accused Gulf nations of inhumane priorities. For his three-day visit to the US to meet with President Obama, Saudi King Salman booked an entire luxury DC hotel—all 222 rooms, which he had covered in gold, at the cost of $1 million per night. That is to say, Saudi Arabia spent over $3 million just on a hotel, but claims it does not have resources for refugees.

Saudi Arabia also pledged $500 million to help Gaza rebuild after Israel’s summer 2014 attack that left 2,310 dead—over two-thirds of whom were civilians—and more than 100,000 homes damaged or destroyed. Other Gulf states pledged millions to aid Gaza reconstruction efforts as well, yet only a fraction of the money promised by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and others was ever delivered.

Egypt

Egypt has taken more than 130,000 Syrian refugees, yet has not been as welcoming of asylum-seekers as nations like Lebanon or Jordan. In fact, scores of Syrian and Palestinian-Syrian refugees have been detained, and have gone on hunger strike in protest of their detention.

amnesty syrian girl shot egypt small

CREDIT: Amnesty International

While the photo of Aylan Kurdi went viral, completely unreported in the US media is the fact that an eight-year-old Syrian refugee girl was, in front of her family, shot dead by Egyptian soldiers.

The family was trying to reach Europe by boat when the young child was shot. “My daughter was bleeding to death but they wouldn’t call an ambulance,” the girl’s father told Amnesty International.

Some of the Syrian refugees are themselves Palestinians who were made refugees after the 1947-1948 Nakba, in which Zionist militias ethnically cleansed approximately 80% of historic Palestine in order to create Israel. These asylum-seekers are essentially “double refugees,” and often have nowhere to go.

Israel

Israel has refused to take a single refugee.

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog called on Netanyahu’s hard-line right-wing government “to act toward receiving refugees from the war in Syria, in addition to the humanitarian efforts it is already making.”

“Jews cannot be indifferent while hundreds of thousands of refugees are looking for safe haven,” Herzog added.

Netanyahu, however, refuses to admit any asylum-seekers, arguing Israel “lacks demographic and geographic depth.” “We must control our borders, against both illegal migrants and terrorism,” the prime minister said.

In fact, the Israeli government is going so far as to build a wall on the Jordanian border to prevent refugees from coming into the country. They plan on connecting the wall with those already built on the Egyptian and Golan Heights borders.

An anti-refugee cartoon in conservative Israeli newspaper Makor Rishon

An anti-refugee cartoon in conservative Israeli newspaper Makor Rishon

Journalist David Sheen shared a racist cartoon published by right-wing Israeli newspaper Makor Rishon. The cartoon depicts a drowning Syrian refugee child crying for help while a white European man “drowning” in a crowd of (literally) brown people also cries for help.

Israel has been notoriously harsh in its treatment of refugees, particularly Africans. The Israeli government has granted refugee status to just 0.07% of African asylum seekers. Until recently, nearly two thousand refugees were held in internment camp-like conditions in the Holot detention center. Israeli politicians refer to African refugees as “infiltrators.” Member of Knesset Miri Regev, now Israel’s minister of culture, went so far as to call African asylum-seekers a “cancer”—and a poll found 52% of Jewish Israelis agreed with her.

Iran

Iran has not given permanent residency to any Syrian refugees, even though it has for years sent weapons, soldiers, and military advisers into Syria to help the Assad government in its fight against rebels.

President Rohani applauded Europe for taking refugees, and implored it to take more, saying “We are happy that some European countries made positive efforts to help refugees and we hope other European countries that do not have this position compensate on shortcomings.” Yet Iran has not taken any refugees.

Russia

Russia has backed Assad from the beginning of the war, providing the government with both heavy artillery like missile systems and small weapons. Yet Putin has not given permanent asylum to any refugees.

CREDIT: Attila Kisbenedek / AFP / Getty Images

CREDIT: Attila Kisbenedek / AFP / Getty Images

In early 2015, over 1,000 Syrians were provided temporary asylum in Russia. More than 1,200 had officially applied for refuge in Russia, yet none were given citizenship. Journalists have reported on the difficulties Syrian refugees in Russia have faced. Given their shaky legal status, the asylum-seekers’ rights as workers are frequently violated; many are exploited by Russian corporations, which tell them to accept low wages or “go back to Syria.”

A Syrian refugee who had tried to swim to Europe, yet was rescued at sea by a Russian ship, was put in a detention center for almost a month. The government planned on deporting him.

The Russian government announced on September 9 it is “ready” for Syrian refugees, but will only take them if they follow the law. The chief of the Federal Migration Service added that, “historically, European countries are more appropriate as refuge for Syrians than the Russian Federation.”

Europe

The European Commission's plan to relocate 120,000 refugees CREDIT: Spanish newspaper El País

The European Commission’s plan to relocate 120,000 refugees
CREDIT: Spanish newspaper El País

The European Commission introduced a plan of mandatory quotas for EU states to relocate 120,000 refugees from Hungary, Greece, and Italy. Under the proposal, Germany, France, and Spain will take close to 60% of the refugees.

France agreed to take 24,000 refugees over two years. The French government also said it would host an international conference in Paris in order to discuss the refugee crisis.

Spain is being asked to take 15,000 refugees.

The UK announced it would resettle up to 20,000 Syrian refugees, but by 2020, not immediately. Britain will take a maximum of 4,000 Syrians every year. Progressive British politicians criticized the conservative-led government for what they see as its “pitifully small” response.

Facts about Syrian refugees in the UK CREDIT: BBC, AP

Facts about Syrian refugees in the UK
CREDIT: BBC, AP

Under the plan, Germany was requested to take only just over 31,000 refugees, yet the German government says it can take up to 500,000 Syrian refugees per year. Germany says it expects more than 800,000 refugees by the end of 2015. In the first half of the year, it took in 35,000.

Austria has also committed to taking several thousand refugees. Many Austrian citizens have volunteered to help refugees.  It was even reported that citizens had set up free Wi-Fi networks for refugees.

Greece has seen a flood of refugees for the past few months. In a single day, Greek officials registered 15,000 refugees. Thousands of refugees have arrived on the small island nation in hopes of subsequently traveling elsewhere for asylum.

Like Greece, Italy has also seen tens of thousands of refugees arrive via boat on its shores. It has called on other European nations to help take the asylum-seekers.

Sweden has been one of the most generous European countries. Although a relatively small country of just 9.8 million, it has already taken over 50,000 refugees in 2015.

“After the Second World War, we said we would never again discriminate people,” a leftist Swedish politician explained. “Now we must again decide what kind of Europe we should be, and my Europe takes in people who flee from war, my Europe doesn’t build walls.”

In 2013, Sweden also offered permanent residency to all the Syrian refugees in the country, 8,000 people.

CREDIT: Yannis Behraki / Reuters

CREDIT: Yannis Behraki / Reuters

Increasingly xenophobic Denmark, where the far-right is on the rise, has been much less accommodating. The Danish government published an anti-refugee ad campaign and has deported asylum-seekers to Germany.

Slovakia, which is also witnessing the resurgence of fascist groups, said it would take 200 refugees, but not Muslims, only Christians. In June, neo-fascists gathered in the capital Bratislava for an anti-Muslim demonstration, chanting “Hang the refugees!” Thousands were also arrested in mass arrests at a violent anti-immigration rally.

Like Slovak leaders, leaders in the Czech Republic are refusing to accept the refugee quotas asked of them. A far-right Czech politician recommended placing the refugees in a concentration camp.

Similarly, Hungary sealed off its southern border in order to prevent refugees from entering. The conservative nation refuses to allow Muslim asylum-seekers to stay. It rounded up refugees, detained them, and transported them to the Austrian border to be taken away.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban assured detractors that his government had no plans to shoot the refugees crossing the fence.

Other Countries

Venezuela announced it is taking in 20,000 Syrian refugees. It already has an estimated 5.6 million Colombian refugees as well.

Since the beginning of the war in 2011, Brazil has taken over 2,000 Syrians—who now comprise the largest refugee group in the country. President Dilma Rousseff said they welcome Syrian asylum-seekers with “open arms.”

Uruguay and Argentina have also created programs for Syrian refugees.

Australia announced it will take 12,000 Syrian and Iraqi asylum-seekers.

Canada has said it will accept 10,000 Syrian refugees over three years. A popular petition has circulated calling on it to take 50,000.

Even the Vatican, the tiny papal state with a population of just 842 agreed to take in two Syrian refugee families.

In doing so, Vatican City—the smallest internationally recognized independent state in the world—has agreed to provide permanent residence to more refugees than the Gulf states, Israel, Iran, and Russia combined.

Troubling Historical Parallels

The enormity of the refugee crisis, and its status as the largest since World War II, have led some to draw historical parallels to Europe’s and the US’ treatment of Jewish refugees before and during the Holocaust.

CREDIT: Sedat Suna / EPA

CREDIT: Sedat Suna / EPA

The Czech government pulled refugees off of trains to Germany, detained them, often separated the men from their wives and children, and wrote numbers on the refugees’ arms.

A video journalist linked to Hungary’s neo-Nazi Jobbik party was caught on camera tripping and kicking fleeing refugee children so they and their families could be arrested by Hungarian police. Swastikas are common symbols at Jobbik’s regular anti-Muslim, anti-Semitic, and anti-immigrant rallies.

Scholar Juan Cole argues that “All the same arguments against letting in the Jews are now being deployed to keep out the Syrians.” Right-wing demagogues today warn the Syrian refugees may be Islamist radicals; in the 1930s, right-wing demagogues claimed the Jewish refugees may be Communist radicals. Conservatives now warn of an Islamic conspiracy to take over the world, just as many right-wing leaders in the early 20th century—including politicians as renowned as Winston Churchill—warned of a “Judeo-Bolshevik” conspiracy to take over the world and implement socialism.

During the Shoah, the US did give refuge to some Jewish intellectuals and artists, but turned away many more. In perhaps the most infamous episode of this deadly racism, 900 Jewish refugees who, fleeing fascism, traveled across the ocean on the ship the S. S. St. Louis, hoping to be granted asylum in the Land of the Free, were turned away. The US, in which anti-Semitism was widespread at the time, forced the refugees to return to Europe, where hundreds were then murdered by the Nazis.

Whether Jewish Refugees in ’30s or Syrians today, USA Falls Short of own Ideals,” Cole writes. He notes that the US invasion of Iraq turned approximately one-sixth of the Iraqi population into refugees—roughly four million people. And yet the “US took in only a few thousand Iraqi refugees after causing all that trouble,” Cole adds.

The struggles of refugees from Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Yemen, and elsewhere, for the moment, seem to not be given much attention as the media focuses on refugees from Syria and as the international community tries to grapple with the largest refugee crisis since World War II.

About Ben Norton

Ben is a journalist and writer based in New York City. His work has been featured in a variety of publications, and he is presently a politics staff writer at Salon. His website can be found at BenNorton.com. Follow him on Twitter at @BenjaminNorton.

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121 Responses

  1. echinococcus
    September 9, 2015, 3:51 pm

    “people from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen”

    Exactly the list of US rapes in the last years, except for Ukraine.

    • K Renner
      September 9, 2015, 6:51 pm

      The US has provided support to some bad elements in Syria and some good elements (Southern Front, YPG/Euphrates Volcano, etc).

      It’s impossible to condemn the negative or morally questionable things done by America in Syria without equally condemning the lunatic Assad and those who’re really fighting for him out of sheer ideology, as opposed to SAA conscripts or those who’re on the side of the government but only exclusively fight the likes of Al Nusra and ISIS>

      The main problem with Libya was the criminal lack of interest after the fact of Gaddafi’s ouster and killing. The operation should’ve been like the French one in Mali– and not a “let’s try and quit as soon as possible” as we saw after the no-fly-zone ended.

      If you glorify or endorse Gaddafi as the “legitimate ruler” of Libya, then you don’t really have moral high ground on the issue.

      Afghanistan was raped by the Soviet Union first and foremost. The ISAF mission was plagued by the usual flaws– unwillingness to totally commit to the ideal, becoming a side-show after the fact of the Iraq war catastrophe– but wasn’t, idealistically, a bad action.

      Blame the US for screwing up the mission and for abandoning Afghanistan after the murderous Soviet occupation ended.

      • Qualtrough
        September 9, 2015, 11:05 pm

        @ K renner -The only problem with overthrowing secular governments in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and now Syria is that the follow-up was inadequate? Do you have any idea how many more trillions would have been spent on that with no guaranteed result?

        How about not overthrowing leaders/governments in the first place and letting the people of those countries determine their own future?

        I am also curious as to Assad’s lunacy? How differently do you think the US would behave if faced with a foreign-funded and supported opposition that consisted of bloodthirsty religious fundamentalists? It mystifies me why we are not supporting Syria to the hilt in fighting ISIS and Al-Qaeda. If we can hold our noses while supporting Saudi Arabia surely we can do the same with someone fighting ISIS?

      • CigarGod
        September 10, 2015, 9:36 am

        K Renner,
        Your comment reads like a typical npr listener.

      • gamal
        September 10, 2015, 12:37 pm

        “The operation should’ve been like the French one in Mali”

        “Mali France and the War on Terror”

        “Africa has been demonized in the West for decades. To justify military intervention and imperialist expansion, Africa is today being depicted again as the scene of instability, violence and terrorism. The progressive forces for peace and social justice should mobilize against this planned remilitarization of the continent”

        let the scramble begin:

        http://www.pambazuka.net/en/category.php/features/86326

        both you and Donald deserve credit for the total incoherence of your positions, they translate in to what action in support of whom? Your ignorance about Syria is only matched by your tone deaf support for ferocious Imperialism in Africa.

        While your remaraks may be fitting for a Walmart car park or the foyer of a US Mega-Church dont you think that those of us who know the history of Syria and Hafez in Syria and Libya and Muammar in Libya are going to detect your utter ignorance, what did Hafez achieve that made him vital to the survival of Syria, it was some time ago as a lot of history is.

        As to moral high ground I worked for an organ of the Libyan state (the jumhurriya, republic) for nearly 30 years, does that make me a bad boy?

        do you really think that any sense can be made of the world looking at from the level of resolution and detail one gets in the MSM?

        Though to be fair your desire to merely anathematize rather than debate makes sense as you know nothing about the issues debate would be best avoided. Also you dont understand what Imperialism is, it is not “incidents” it is the entire system by which the world is managed, it is pervasive.

      • Donald
        September 10, 2015, 5:54 pm

        Sloppy as usual, gamal. I don’t agree with Renner’s support for US intervention. Our history of intervention has been one of total disaster for the people involved.

        The U.S. should provide humanitarian aid to refugees and open our borders to them if they want to come here. Argue with Renner and whatever demented straw man version of me you have lodged in your head, but I may correct you about that if I have nothing better to do.

      • gamal
        September 10, 2015, 10:15 pm

        “Sloppy as usual, gamal ” yes sure you have a point, sorry, let me start at the end.

        It is of paramount importance, in some of our view, that the Syrian state survives this onslaught as it is presently constituted, for which rather than offering any apology we, myself and my Arab correspondents, can offer perfectly rational and blindingly obvious arguments.

        Assad is not an issue, why do you think he is? Syria is the issue.

        But lets just check these figures, I have seen 300,000 dead lets go from there, it is generally agreed that 50% of these are Syrian Army, so the first thing we can tentatively surmise is that the Syrian Army, not Assad, is not fighting according to the American Israeli NATO doctrine of calling in airstrikes and obliterating any scene of resistance,

        They would appear to be fighting by engaging the enemy on the ground in towns and cities etc, this is precisely the doctrine that will minimize infrastructure damage, its their country, and reduce civilian casualties, its their people, arguable isnt it.

        so of the remaining 150,000 it would be fair to say that the rebels while inflicting great losses must have taken some themselves, say conservatively, 80,000.

        So we have 70,000 remaining, now to be clear I would happily work with that but since the Rebels, perhaps “good guys’ amongst them, whatever that means, have a great enthusiasm for killing civilians, I think I am entitled to split it,

        So for you Assad ( the Syrian State) may have killed 35,000 civilians ( in what circumstances who knows, who cares) while fighting invasions from the east and north, which have seized half the country, you reduce Syria to the latest 2 minute hate Arab, apathy achieved, of course I am sloppy dont you see their is nothing to engage with, you need to do some work,

        After Algeria, after Afghanistan, after Iraq, after Somalia, during Palestine, the Philippines, Egypt, Eritrea, you not noticing anything, each is worthy of proper research.

        After, Nasser, Arafat, Gadaffi, Hussein, you not seeing a pattern,

        Anyone who uses Syria as an opportunity to discuss Assad, is in my book, sick,

        If Syria fractures into antagonistic enclaves, Iraq is gone shattered, with whatever dire consequences that is going to deliver, Syria’s collapse will lead to catastrophes for Palestine and the whole region will lapse in to paranoia, and war.

        Look where Syria is It has been under constant assault from the powers since 1925 at least,

        we want the American assault to fail for the sake of everyone’s welfare, if you think that means that we are in some way reprehensible, morally failing who cares?

        You are looking for a way to be bystander to slaughter, Assad aside the Syrian state must survive because the alternatives, here and now, are too awful to contemplate,

        I met Gadaffi twice, shook his hand I was part of a delagation, he talked for eight hours, typical Bedouin, but his fate is side a note, Libya was destroyed because it was succeeding, the regional model is failure abjection and societal collapse, in 2 decades this will all be yours,

        I know i am rude but its you man who are sloppy you talk irrelevantly and do not even seem to know what data you should be accessing so that you might know whereof you speak. Syria.

      • Donald
        September 11, 2015, 12:11 am

        Thanks Gamal. I actually appreciate it when you spell things out. I read the UN report on Syria from last year and they found based on the evidence they had that all the main factions in that war are committing atrocities, including the government. I believe them. But I have noticed in the past that the actual breakdown in the death toll showed ( last I saw) that armed combatants on all sides seemed to make up the majority of the death toll, so I already knew that the claim a couple years back that Assad had killed 100,000 of his own people was a twisting of the data. One hears less of this now that the West is more worried about ISIS.

        And yes, ignorant Westerner that I am, I also think Assad is the least of the possible evils among the likely victors in Syria, which is deeply depressing. And the last thing I wanted a couple of years ago was for the U.S. to try to topple Assad– any sane person looking at our record would expect a catastrophic result.

      • Marnie
        September 11, 2015, 12:36 am

        Maybe the US should keep the hell out of other countries, propping up dictators, etc., and there wouldn’t be the crisis of this magnitude. No matter how you try to spin it, the US has its fingerprints all over. The US needs to clean up the messes it continually makes before doing a cut and run all over the world.

      • CigarGod
        September 11, 2015, 10:55 am

        But, we want their stuff…and we don’t want to pay a fair price for it. The indigenous people want to keep their stuff…and gain liberation.

      • Boo
        September 11, 2015, 12:55 pm

        I agree. Had the US stepped in to support the opposition to Assad early, at the beginning, Assad would’ve been toppled long ago and Syria would’ve regained stability before the extremists could gain a foothold. We missed our window of opportunity to empower the less radical elements of the opposition. Syria’s suffering of today is in large part attributable to our failure of will.

    • Keith
      September 9, 2015, 8:09 pm

      ECHINOCOCCUS- “Exactly the list of US rapes in the last years, except for Ukraine.”

      The empire of chaos has set the world on fire with its “long war” to destroy any and all opposition to imperial hegemony. The refugees are a consequence of imperial warmongering, K Renner’s apologetics an affront to common decency. Citizens of empire need to accept some responsibility for what is happening instead of trying to justify this disaster. There is no such thing as a humanitarian intervention, and R2P is a pretext for war, nothing more.

      • K Renner
        September 10, 2015, 5:05 pm

        Apologist for genocidal Russians and Serbians, and their worst war criminals.

        No better then the worst Zionists who did and do demand for a full ethnic cleansing of all remaining Palestinians.

        You haven’t any moral high ground to stand on, and it’d be good PR to expunge people such as yourself whenever they try and attach themselves to the Palestinian cause.

        I personally don’t want you fouling it up with your presence.

      • Keith
        September 10, 2015, 8:45 pm

        K BRENNER- “I personally don’t want you fouling it up with your presence.”

        Spoken like a diehard imperialist and militarist.

      • ToivoS
        September 11, 2015, 1:59 am

        Keith You are right, K Renner is most certainly an advocate for more war. His cover is obviously the R2P or humanitaritan war justification that we hear from the neo-liberals like Hillary and her neocon followers. I certainly doubt that he has any sympathy for the Palestinian people, though he shows up here as “sympathetic”.

      • Keith
        September 11, 2015, 11:07 am

        TOIVOS- “I certainly doubt that he has any sympathy for the Palestinian people, though he shows up here as “sympathetic”.

        I agree completely. While he claims to support the Palestinians, he quite obviously vigorously supports neocon (Zionist) warmongering directed at the neocon ‘hit list’ of countries targeted for destruction. Destruction which weakens the Palestinian position and works to Israel’s strategic advantage. As for Assad, just how bad is he relatively speaking? Should he be more like el Sisi? Erdogan? The Saudi royal family? Netanyahu? And who in their right mind goes along with US/Israel, Turkish, Saudi support for the Islamic State (well documented, I might add)? Either K Renner is the very embodiment of hypocrisy on steroids or he is a shill (paid or not). My guess is the latter.

    • Kathleen
      September 10, 2015, 5:27 pm

      Have you heard any of the so called liberal talking heads on MSNBC talking about this refugee crisis in any kind of serious way? Have you heard any talking head on any outlet mention that most of the refugee problem has been caused by U.S. bloody meddling.

      On top of it U.S. barely taking any of the refugees that the U.S. created. Sickening. Shameful.

      There truly is no reason why people should not be able to understand why people in that part of the world hate us?

      • ToivoS
        September 11, 2015, 3:04 am

        Have you heard any talking head on any outlet mention that most of the refugee problem has been caused by U.S. bloody meddling

        Certainly not in major western news accounts. Iraq, Syria and Libya – 3 major failed states that were created by interventions carried out by the Bush and Obama admins. It was Hillary Clinton as Sec of State that advocated the latter two.

      • Kathleen
        September 13, 2015, 9:55 pm

        Toivo thanks for pointing out Clinton’s push for intervention in both Libya and Syria

  2. Joe Catron
    September 9, 2015, 3:53 pm

    On what is the claim that “Iran has not taken any refugees” based? Certainly not the UNHCR:

    http://www.unhcr.org/pages/49e486f96.html

    • ASBizar
      September 9, 2015, 5:11 pm

      More than 90% of them are Afghan refugees. I cannot see any Syrian refugees in there. Moreover, Afghans have disastrous living conditions there. I am not saying that refugees in other countries don’t, and I am not saying that Iran has been hostile to refugees, I am merely stating the facts.
      I am an Iranian by the way.

      • Bandolero
        September 9, 2015, 6:48 pm

        ASBizar

        That most refugees in Iran are Afghan and not Syrian doesn’t change the fact that the assertation that Iran has taken zero refugees is plain wrong, especially after two sentences before is said that many of the refugees in the world are from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen. And, of course, most Iran-friendly Syrians who need to flee, don’t even want to flee to Iran, but prefer Latakia, Tartous or Lebanon instead as their destination. And by the way, as I heard from Syria, many terrorist fighters sent their famliy to Tartous and Latakia, too. It’s because one can live in Latakia or Tartous safely for there is no war there, however, naturally, it’s overcrowded, exactly for this reason.

    • WH
      September 9, 2015, 5:35 pm

      That pages doesn’t mention any Syrian refugees, only Afghans and Iraqis.

      • Joe Catron
        September 10, 2015, 8:54 pm

        But is the article on which we are commenting not focused on “refugees from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen”?

    • mohandeer
      September 10, 2015, 9:56 am

      • Despite the voluntary return of hundreds of thousands of Afghan and Iraqi refugees to their countries of origin during the past decade, the Islamic Republic of Iran remains host to one of the world’s largest and most protracted refugee populations.

  3. Bandolero
    September 9, 2015, 6:38 pm

    echinococcus

    “people from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen”

    Exactly the list of US rapes in the last years, except for Ukraine.

    So true.

    Ben Norton

    The Middle East, North Africa, and Western Asia are particularly hard hit. Millions of refugees from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen are fleeing violence and war in their countries. … Human rights organizations warn the Gulf states, Israel, Iran, and Russia—all of which have taken zero refugees—along with the US, Canada, and Europe—which have taken few—are not doing enough to provide refuge to the asylum-seekers.

    Please stop spreading nonsense. Iran is among the countries hosting the most refugees in the world. According to the UNHCR the figure of refugees in Iran for 2015 is 982,120, mostly from Afghanistan, a country first ravaged by US- and Saudi-backed wahhabi terrorists and later by US-led military forces:

    http://www.unhcr.org/cgi-bin/texis/vtx/page?page=49e486f96&submit=GO

    That’s according to the figures of the UNHCR, however Iran’s Ministry of Interior says the number of Afghan refugees in Iran is around 3 million. Whatever is the truth, that’s quite many refugees in Iran, not zero as you claim.

    And for Russia, the number of refugees in Russia from the Nuland-led regime change and war in Ukraine alone is hundreds of thousands, and there are many more refugees from US-led destabilized states in central Asia in Russia, not zero as you claim:

    https://www.rt.com/politics/313692-russia-accepted-over-1mn-ukrainian/

    So before you assign equal blame on Iran and Russia with US-led imperialism, please get your facts straight, Ben.

    • K Renner
      September 9, 2015, 6:56 pm

      ” And for Russia, the number of refugees in Russia from the Nuland-led regime change and war in Ukraine alone is hundreds of thousands, and there are many more refugees from US-led destabilized states in central Asia in Russia, not zero as you claim:”

      Blech.

      While it’s imperative to not pull a Stephen Harper and pretend as though the situation in the Ukraine is some kind of new cold war crusade, the fact that some on the left support the chauvinistic and idiotic Russian version of “pan-slavicism” and the ideology in action is pretty gross.

      But these are the same elements of the left who absolved Russia and played (play) blame the victim when it comes to Russia’s evil actions in Afghanistan or Chechnya.

      “Novorossiya” isn’t really anything more then a puppet element for the Kremlin. In terms of ethnic discrimination, these moronic pseudo neo-communists and Russian ultra-nationalists are the ones who’re solely doing any kind of persecuting, namely against the Roma living in the area and the Tatars as well, specifically the Crimean Tatars.

      It’s imperative to condemn legitimate examples of negative, destructive imperialism from major powers whenever it appears. Sadly you don’t seem to want to condemn the Russian variety, whereas I can condemn America and Russia equally.

      • Bandolero
        September 9, 2015, 10:30 pm

        K Renner

        You use a lot of strong pejorative adjectives. You wrote, quote: chauvinistic and idiotic, evil, moronic…

        You seem to have many grudges against Russia which I find OK because everyone is entitled to his own prejudices. And I also have no problem that you use many strong pejorative adjectives for people like me. However your factual arguments I find strange as they look to me as if you got your historical and political education directly from a neocon hasbara shop or Fox News.

        Just let me take one example. You write: … blame the victim when it comes to Russia’s evil actions in Afghanistan …

        The historical reality is that the evil actions in Afghanistan were committed by the US. Since a couple of years it’s no secret anymore what the US did with Afghanistan. The US destroyed Afghanistan by launching a Wahhabi terror war on Afghanistan in the summer 1979. Carter’s security czar Brzezinski took pride in it long ago, quote Brzezinski:

        “According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise: Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.”

        Source: Counter Punch 15/1/1998: How Jimmy Carter and I Started the Mujahideen

        That covert US war using terrorism of the Saudi wahhabi brand of Islam was not confined to delivering weapons to terrorists, but also infect the whole Afghan society with a wahhabi terrorist mind, beginning with small school children. So, while the Soviet Union tried – and failed – to bring values like gender equality to Afghanistan the US financed and printed textbooks for small Afghan school children brainwashing them that they should kill infidels. That’s well documented here and in many other local sources, because the US jihadi textbooks were in use for a very long time there:

        THE ABC’S OF JIHAD IN AFGHANISTAN * Courtesy, USA
        By Joe Stephens and David B. Ottaway
        Washington Post, 23 March 2002

        http://emperors-clothes.com/news/abc.htm

        The higher echolons of US politics have long confessed that the US destroyed Afghanistan by exporting the Saudi Wahhabi brand of terror to Afghanistan. See, here a young female US senator confessing to this abhorrent US crime on video:

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dqn0bm4E9yw

        This US senator knows well what crime the US committed in Afghanistan because her hubby Bill was a leading proponent of that US crime against humanity in Afghanistan.

        And, so to come to the most recent history, it’s a very common crime for the US. The Zionist-led USA spreads terrorism of Wahhabi, fascist and Nazi brands to destabilize countries for geopolitical reasons, one after the other, to persue geopolitical imperialistic aims, and then uses Fox news and similar news outlets to blame the US crimes on the victims. With that terrorist tactic of destabilisation or direct wars of aggression the US destroyed Afghanistan, some countries in Latin America, Somalia, Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine and quite a bunch of many more countries.

        Yes, I know, K Renner, my arguments doesn’t convince you. And I don’t think any argument could convince you. But as I said above, Iturbed by that because ‘m not disI’m off the opinion that you are entitled to your prejudices and political and historical education by Fox News.

      • RoHa
        September 9, 2015, 11:35 pm

        King Zahir Shah did more for sex equality than the Soviets managed, but the Soviets certainly tried.

        “everyone is entitled to his own prejudices”

        Have to disagree with you there. No-one is entitled to prejudices*. Judgements should be based on facts and reason.

        Of course, we do, as a practical matter, allow people to hold prejudices, but that is not entitlement.

        (*Not even against the French.)

      • echinococcus
        September 10, 2015, 12:20 am

        Bandolero,

        No matter how many times it’s repeated, it seems that the message just doesn’t get through: a site consecrated to a given topic needs the common input, and agreement on discussing that particular topic, of people who hold very varied opinions on every other subject. There seems to be at all times someone who will provoke by stating things about, say, Russia or Egypt or bimetallism or anything else.
        Impossible not to react.
        I have no objection when it touches directly our common topic but at times it seems to get out of control when someone feels a statement must be made at any cost. I was wondering if we couldn’t prepare some form letter for this kind of provocation, some text that might discourage the OT posters.

      • Donald
        September 10, 2015, 7:41 am

        You are assuming that the “provocation” comes from people who disagree with you. But someone can condemn Soviet behavior in Afghanistan, which involved killing hundreds of thousands of civilians or more, and the Assad government’s habit of torture and bombing and shelling of civilian populations without supporting American military intervention in Afghanistan and Libya. It seems a little weird to condemn Israel’s bombing of civilians in Gaza and then excuse the vastly greater scale of bombing the Soviets did in Afghanistan because the Soviets and their leftist Afghan allies were socially progressive when they weren’t torturing people to death and bombing villages into rubble. The Zionists sometimes make the same type of argument. So I disagree with both sides in this thread to some degree, but while I am typing this, someone else is no doubt being wrong on the Internet.

      • echinococcus
        September 10, 2015, 10:03 am

        Donald,

        Let’s assume that you have some dearly held religious belief. You participate in this site’s activity because of a particular interest in helping (or killing) Palestinian resistance. If I, as a fellow participant, continued to attack, disparage, ridicule you the whole time because of your illogical belief and imaginary friends, treating Palestine as just one side issue I bet you’d be cross.
        The same applies here. While I may be (somewhat) close to you on Palestinian rights, let’s suppose that I am very opinionated on Syria, defending the Assad government and his Russian supporters against the US intervention that created the civil war and is pursuing it with the sole intent of creating total chaos no matter who wins, destroying all sides in the interest of the Zionists as with Iraq and Libya, as requested by the PNAC document.
        Where is the interest to MW and its readers if I introduce this view even when the discussion topic at hand does not require it, then attack and harass you as a camouflaged Zionist because of your position on Syria, not directly related to Palestine (while your position wrt Palestine pretends the contrary and so is not in discussion)? Will this help any action that may take shape following our discussions in MW? Won’t it lead to a loss of readership and material support to MW?
        So of course it’s a provocation, no need for quote marks, when introduced unnecessarily by either side. It may be a good idea to prepare a warning text for such OT material.

      • Donald
        September 10, 2015, 5:40 pm

        I don’t know if it’s possible or even desirable to keep everyone focused exclusively on Israel’s crimes, though I agree it would be a mistake if we spent the majority of our time arguing about those other issues. They come up and some of us yell and insult each other and then most of the attention goes back to Israel, as it should, given the blog’s purpose.

      • echinococcus
        September 10, 2015, 7:42 pm

        Donald,

        It’s not a good thing. It will cost MW a good number of readers if every time I ( for example) get here I have to blow my top reading some inane imperialist propaganda (in my eyes) like yours or Renner’s etc., after which you’ll get exercised over my overbearing Stalinism, and so on and so forth in a rising spiral. Let’s abstain unless the connection to Palestine is immediate and inevitable.
        The Zionist propaganda robots filling the space are more than enough.

      • MRW
        September 11, 2015, 12:24 am

        these moronic pseudo neo-communists and Russian ultra-nationalists are the ones who’re solely doing any kind of persecuting, namely against the Roma living in the area and the Tatars as well, specifically the Crimean Tatars.

        Spare me. This is the same kind of ignorant comment as those who accuse Russia of illegally annexing Crimea in March, 2014. The Crimean Tatars, btw, happily voted to become part of Russia.

        FYI, when the Ukraine wrote its Constitution in 1992, it gave Crimea its effective independence within the Ukraine, and it granted Crimea the legal constitutional right to determine it’s own future and relationship with others, like Russia. This wasn’t a Russian edict, the Russians had nothing to do with it. The Ukrainians wrote it. They wrote that Crimea could decide who it was, what it wanted to be, and where it wanted to exist nationally, without any interference from Kyev. Crimea exercised that constitutional right in March 2014 via a referendum, and the US’s uneducated national security advisers (Rice, Powell, and the Kid) called it an illegal act.

      • CigarGod
        September 11, 2015, 11:01 am

        Interesting. Thanks for that.

      • Donald
        September 11, 2015, 12:27 am

        Sorry, I don’t agree. You probably won’t be seeing as much of me here as I’m trying to cut back on my online bloviating, so good news for you, but there will be others. You seem oblivious to the fact that people on your side also make sweeping statements that might anger people or chase them away. It’s an unavoidable problem since people invariably see connections between the I-P conflict and other issues and won’t always agree.

        And my views don’t match Renner’s on intervention. It’s not imperialism to notice that sometimes America’s enemies also commit atrocities. I can notice this without feeling the urge to start bombing people.

      • echinococcus
        September 11, 2015, 12:56 am

        Donald,

        I probably wasn’t clear enough. Obviously anything happening in that general area (and overseas…) is connected to Palestine. I was only asking to avoid introducing a partisan attack when the connection to Palestine is not imposing itself out of its own weight –not to shut up things that we must discuss because they have an impact on whatever is at hand.
        Also, of course I am not confusing you with Renner, and if you write less frequently I’d miss something valuable.

      • gamal
        September 11, 2015, 7:19 pm

        Donald,

        I read a post of yours about you know not bloviating etc, cant find it, in conformity with feminist practice I would like to explain where I am coming from,

        but first if you decide to do other things rather Mondopost, thank you for your company I interact with you for my own reasons, sloppy perhaps but i have very specific objectives, I have nothing but respect for you, you are an exotic entity to me, with whom I can interact because you can do things for me, if its any use to you, great! I always appreciated your WASPish unflappability, I know I am c##t, i have argued with and insulted everyone from Annie, Hostage even Mooser, I always read your posts.

        so this feminist self revelation thing: I dont know if this helps but culturally I am mostly “White Working Class English” thats what my mother was even though she died with a title, her uncle Reg described us as “Semi-Tramp” class, despite my Bedouin Heritage thats me, my white relatives in Londons East End were gangsters, I didnt know i was black until white people told me i was, think lock stock and “nil by mouth” etc, you have no idea how valuable I think speaking to you is.

        so firstly what are the crimes of Assad Pere et Fils that render the destruction of this state positive ( I am very drunk and getting more and more stoned, indulge me) never mind the consequences.

        Like Proyects kill the damn nigga leaders racist libidinous ( yes lascivious also) yearning for the destruction of resistant Arab regimes, (there’s a great book out about the Shachtmanites

        https://books.google.ie/books?id=mzlsL5s0GXYC&pg=PA284&lpg=PA284&dq=shachtmanite+imperialism&source=bl&ots=6liMovXCYd&sig=IO_pGqIGp6Pjjs4DSL8AelACPPs&hl=en&sa=X&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=shachtmanite%20imperialism&f=false) I dont get it? Its like watching an old man wank into a sock, you think this gotcha style of analysis has any utility?

        You say you are against intervention, fuck me, when will that start, no really when is not intervening in Syria going to start, 12th of never?

      • Keith
        September 11, 2015, 7:34 pm

        DONALD- “It seems a little weird to condemn Israel’s bombing of civilians in Gaza and then excuse the vastly greater scale of bombing the Soviets did in Afghanistan because the Soviets and their leftist Afghan allies were socially progressive when they weren’t torturing people to death and bombing villages into rubble.”

        Did you read Bandolero’s response to K Renner? If you did, you will note that the US destabilization began before the Soviets invaded, and in fact may have precipitated the invasion to protect an ally from being overthrown by outside forces. Had the US not unleashed the Mujahadeen terrorists, it is unlikely that the USSR would have invaded Afghanistan, hence, there would be no bombing (torturing?). Surely, the US bears considerable responsibility for the death and suffering of the Soviet invasion. Add to that the death and suffering of the American invasion and the US clearly emerges as the greater villain. Besides, as Americans we should be more critical of our own government’s actions than the actions of those we cannot influence.

        As for “the vastly greater scale of bombing the Soviets did in Afghanistan ” versus the bombing in Gaza, do you have any reliable data concerning Soviet atrocities in Afghanistan versus US atrocities in Afghanistan? Bombing helpless civilians in the Gaza prison is rather different from combating heavily armed and supported terrorists. I believe that this was the largest and most expensive CIA operation ever undertaken back then. Also, I don’t think it is “excusing” Soviet actions to point out that these actions were, in fact, reactions to US aggression.

        I conclude by pointing out that if you are looking for examples of large scale bombing and atrocities, you should check out US military operations in Korea and Vietnam. We dropped more bombs on Vietnam than we dropped on Germany, Italy and Japan during World War II.

      • Donald
        September 12, 2015, 9:58 am

        Keith, it has been decades since I read about Afghanistan, but I am familiar with what Brzezinski admitted about US involvement. Afghanistan was used as a theater for fighting the Cold War and roughly a million people died (estimates vary). There would have been a civil war anyway, but the outside interventions made it far worse. The U.S. bears a huge amount of blame, but the Soviets fought that war much like the US fought in Vietnam. In some respects the two wars are like mirror images of each other.

        My view here is identical to Chomsky’s, btw–maybe you haven’t read some of his work from the 80’s. He didn’t write much about it because he mostly focused on US crimes for the reason you mentioned, but he condemned the Soviets without having illusions about the mujahideen. You seem to think that if someone condemns Soviet brutality they must not be aware of America’s, but I have read Bruce Cumings’s books on Korea and some other authors whose names I forget and I know perfectly well that we bombed most urban areas in North Korea and much of the South into rubble. I can’t even begin to list what I’ve read about Vietnam, most recently the Turse book about American atrocities. On Afghanistan I read a leftist from that country (can’t find the book, but I think the publisher was Verso) and he acknowledged Soviet crimes, but gave a leftist perspective missing from the MSM. I read Cockburn in the 80’s and knew the Western press was romanticizing the mujahideen and whitewashing their actions.

        I don’t think there are exact statistics for Soviet crimes in Afghanistan, but I have never seen anyone deny that the death toll was between several hundred thousand and 1.5 million, with several million refugees fleeing the Soviet bombardment. Again, similar to Vietnam with a different superpower wielding the massive firepower.

        Gamal, thanks, I think. Repeating myself, I thought your post about your position on Syria was very informative–that is the Mondoweiss comment section at its best.

      • Keith
        September 12, 2015, 11:23 am

        DONALD- “In some respects the two wars are like mirror images of each other.”

        No they weren’t. In both cases the conflicts were precipitated by US aggression. In Vietnam, the US scuttled the negotiated peace between the Vietnamese and the French which would have resulted in elections which would have predictably resulted in Ho Chi Minh’s victory. In Afghanistan, the US unleashed a destabilization campaign which destroyed the peace. I am unaware that there would have been a civil war without US intervention. If you know otherwise, please provide some evidence. It is difficult for me to imagine that the local warlords and the recruited Arab Mujahadeen mercenaries enjoyed much popular support. As for atrocities, civil wars are ugly affairs, particularly when a superpower is calling the shots. As for equivalency of violence, surely you aren’t claiming that Soviet firepower even remotely approached the US Vietnam bombing campaign? And while I neither approve nor excuse the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, I also believe that claiming a false equivalency between the USSR actions in Afghanistan and US imperial actions everywhere else constitutes whataboutery of an extremely dubious nature. If the US hadn’t engaged in destabilization in Afghanistan, then it is highly unlikely that you would have a Soviet intervention to compare (erroneously, in my view) to Vietnam. Putting things in context and in perspective is not making excuses. However, bringing up Soviet actions in order to mitigate imperial wrongdoing is a form of excuse making.

        “There is, evidently, much satisfaction to be gained by careful inspection of those writhing under our boot, to see if they are behaving properly; when they are not, as is often the case, indignation is unconstrained.” (Noam Chomsky)

      • Mooser
        September 19, 2015, 3:45 pm

        “Of course, we do, as a practical matter, allow people to hold prejudices, but that is not entitlement. “

        Mr. Pockheel, a big department, but don’t you mean to say “an entitlement”?

        Thank You,
        D*E*R*B*I*G M*O*O*S*E*R

      • RoHa
        September 19, 2015, 7:37 pm

        No.

      • Mooser
        September 19, 2015, 9:30 pm

        “No”

        Okay, Sounds right.
        I just wanted to sign my name that way, just once. I wont do it again.

    • CigarGod
      September 10, 2015, 9:41 am

      Good work, Bandelero.
      Ben is a smart guy. Don’t know why he is sloppy on this point.

    • mohandeer
      September 10, 2015, 10:26 am

      Russia at the last count had taken in 1.8 million Donbas and Ukrainian refugees before they built the trench to stem the flow. The reason for the trench is that the Islamic State and Nazi members of the various fascist factions present in the Ukraine were posing as refugees. Now Poland has seen a rise in Nazism and fascism because Poland was the staging ground for an assault on Russia. Many leftist Polish leaders are now worried about the presence of such extremists. With regards Iran, it has over many years had a program of aid offering nearly a million mostly Afghan refugees to find legal work within Iran or return home as they choose. It was quite some undertaking and many Afghani’s have now settled in Iran within the framework of the extensive programs Iran offered.
      It is also worth noting that prior to the US deployment of their terrorist activists, there was no “Syrian refugee crisis”, that is to say Syrians for the most part did not see cause to flee their homeland in droves. Basher certainly let panic over the US interference in Libya influence his actions in allowing the army/police to fire into crowds of demonstrators fearing where these demonstrations would lead as they did in Libya. To condemn Assad, it is also necessary to condemn the Saudi regime and that of Israel, Turkey and many African States and also of course Ukraine. Strange then that the mantra seems to be “Assad must go” when he is certainly no worse than the regimes just mentioned. The difference being, for those unaware, is that the other regimes are all pro Washington whereas those who do not attract US “exceptionalism” are not. Nuff said?

      • K Renner
        September 11, 2015, 2:29 pm

        ” Russia at the last count had taken in 1.8 million Donbas and Ukrainian refugees before they built the trench to stem the flow.”

        Russia is largely responsible for manufacturing the Crimean and Ukrainian situation in the first place.

        Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia.

        That nation and the– as I said to the ire of the far leftists and apologists for Russo-Serbian chauvinism– odious and stupid “Novorossiyans” are easily as morally bankrupt as the USA often is.

        “The reason for the trench is that the Islamic State and Nazi members of the various fascist factions present in the Ukraine were posing as refugees.”

        Russian lies.

        ” Now Poland has seen a rise in Nazism and fascism because Poland was the staging ground for an assault on Russia.”

        Hyperbole. It’s worth noting that Russia has the highest concentration of neo-nazis and white supremacists in all of Eastern Europe.

        Many of those support the “Novorossiya” annexation project.

        ” With regards Iran, it has over many years had a program of aid offering nearly a million mostly Afghan refugees to find legal work within Iran or return home as they choose. It was quite some undertaking and many Afghani’s have now settled in Iran within the framework of the extensive programs Iran offered.”

        This is true, In this context it’s definitely unfair to pretend that “Iran doesn’t take any refugees”.

        “It is also worth noting that prior to the US deployment of their terrorist activists”

        Largely hyperbole when it comes to Syria.

        ” was no “Syrian refugee crisis”, ”

        Well, there was. Syrians have been fleeing the conflict, whenever they can, for years.

        ” Basher certainly let panic over the US interference in Libya influence his actions in allowing the army/police to fire into crowds of demonstrators fearing where these demonstrations would lead as they did in Libya.”

        He’s not a rational actor in Syria and neither are the really ideological Assadists. Bashar is nothing more then a war criminal, as was Gaddafi.

        ” To condemn Assad, it is also necessary to condemn the Saudi regime and that of Israel, Turkey and many African States and also of course Ukraine.”

        And you don’t condemn Assad.

        That’s the problem.

        I condemn Saudi, Israel, Russia and the “Novorossiyans”, the worst sub-Saharan African states, the USA, and all the worst parties in Syria.

        And of course, Assad is one of the worst parties in Syria.

        ” when he is certainly no worse than the regimes just mentioned.”

        That’s delusional. He’s on par with ISIS.

        Saying as much doesn’t make other bad entities “not bad” or any such thing.

        ” The difference being, for those unaware, is that the other regimes are all pro Washington whereas those who do not attract US “exceptionalism” are not. Nuff said?”

        America is hypocritical. That doesn’t make your apologia for Assad or your ridiculous lionization of Russia at all moral or sane by any means, though.

      • Mooser
        September 11, 2015, 7:25 pm

        “Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia, Russia.”

        Wait a minute, Mr. Renner, are you doing the Hopak or the “Funky Chicken”?

      • echinococcus
        September 11, 2015, 9:22 pm

        Mooser,

        How quickly one forgets some dances that were so fashionable then! No no, it’s not the hopak, it’s the cold war. Don’t you know the steps anymore?

      • Mooser
        September 11, 2015, 10:55 pm

        ” Don’t you know the steps anymore?”

        Of course I do! You raise the left arm up, and your right arm too. Let me tell you just what to do!
        Start both of ’em to flapping, you start your feet to kicking. That’s when you know, you doin’ the “funky chicken”!
        As if I could ever forget, or blame it on the Bossa Nova!

  4. ritzl
    September 9, 2015, 7:15 pm

    Great article.

    Palestine surely warrants a place on the first, refugee origins map. It’s one of the largest post-WWII refugee crises. As are Viet Nam, East Timor, Cambodia, and others to be sure. Why 1991 as a starting point?

    I wonder if the cutoff date was designed to exclude Palestine. Call me cynical and/or paranoud, but media discussions of political boycotts over the last 50 years always conveniently leave Israel off the list. Was Palestine conveniently left off that map so that Israel wouldn’t be include on tis particular sh-list?

    Sidenote: The US sure does seem to be involved in most of the biggest post-WWII refugee crises.

  5. BI
    September 9, 2015, 7:35 pm

    I am appalled at the reaction of Western leaders. They’re destroying Syria and they’re pretending to be caught off guard.

    Western hypocrisy in the Syrian refugee crisis >> http://bit.ly/1UgSpfb

    • K Renner
      September 11, 2015, 2:34 pm

      Assad has done more then his fair share of destroying Syria at this point.

      It’s imperative to condemn hypocrisy and callousness coming from the west when it comes to the Syrian refugee crisis.

      But if you white wash Assad or otherwise create some false narrative where he’s some kind of benevolent humanitarian and everyone who didn’t want him in “must be” Islamist or Wahhabi, then you’re really just showing that you’ve got some kind of delusional mindset going on.

  6. oldgeezer
    September 9, 2015, 7:52 pm

    Canada’s lack of action is an extreme embarrassment to me. I would hope the majority of Canadians agree with me but I’m not aware of any accurate polling data on the issue. I am aware of polls but the difference in analysis is over 20% which is not insignificant.

    I think Harper has added to the embarrassment by his so called three point plan. One is accept more refugees, the second is provide more support for refugees. It’s hard to argue against that. The third is send in the troops which is, in my opinion, both counter productive and likely to create more dead and refugees. It’s his position that he is not open to doing only part of those three points and that to do so would, in his opinion, be a moral failing.

    The more failing is not caring how many lives and livelihoods we destroy to remove Assad. That’s the obvious goal as the concern for Syrians has never been there just as it hasn’t been there for the peoples of other states we have fomented or aided in the destruction.

    • zaid
      September 10, 2015, 11:18 pm

      oldgeezer

      I disagree, Canada Helped alot.

      The solution to the syrian refugee crisis is to let Saudi arabia and other Arab countries absorb them, then this might force them to stop sending arms once the effect of war reaches their countries.

      dont let them off the hook.

      • gamal
        September 10, 2015, 11:40 pm

        ” other Arab countries absorb them”

        Perhaps Kuwait?

      • talknic
        September 11, 2015, 3:10 am

        The Arab States already assist http://www.theage.com.au/world/migrant-crisis-why-arent-the-rich-gulf-arab-states-doing-more-20150909-gjj1hn.html

        What they don’t offer is re-settlement. For the simple reason that people who accept citizenship in another country forgo RoR, which is why there are no claims by Arab Jews expelled from Arab States in 1948/50. Who, as a point of interest, were cared for in Israel by UNRWA until 1952.

        It is BTW normal for countries at war to expel or intern and freeze the assets of possible allies of one’s enemies. It’s also normal to allow their return and unfreeze their assets IF they are still refugees!

  7. amigo
    September 9, 2015, 8:06 pm

    Ben , this is a very valuable list.I will use it to show people why we in Ireland are legally obliged to take in war refugees and also to use the comparisons to Lebanon and Jordan to demonstrate just what a lousy job our gov is doing.They have been screwing around with numbers anywhere from 600 to 1800 to 5000 , depending on who is dishing out the numbers .Sickening , given that Irish citizens have benefited so greatly from being accepted in so many other countries.

    But it is not all bad.Many Irish citizens have signed up to take in “Syrian ” families, ( they are subjects of the media blitz on the Syrian issue ) into their homes or rental apartments (for free).We just need our leaders to get on board,

    Thanks again for the list and article.

  8. Brown-Eyed Girl
    September 9, 2015, 10:05 pm

    These migrants are not poor. They paid smugglers thousands of dollars each to take them to Europe. This is Syria’s educated middle class. I feel terribly sorry for them but if Germany takes them in, who will be there to rebuild Syria when the war is over? The civil war in Syria will end and they will need their able-bodied young men (most of the migrants are healthy young men), their doctors, engineers, nurses, and teachers. Remember most Syrian refugees are still internally displaced in Syria, they are also in Lebanon, and Turkey. It is easy for the public to see a photo of one drowning child and feel compassion, but the idea of millions in genuine refugee camps in the Middle East provokes indifference or a feeling of there is nothing I can do so lets move on. This is the best article I have seen on this great migration

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/immigration/11842760/Prepare-yourselves-The-Great-Migration-will-be-with-us-for-decades.html

    • Annie Robbins
      September 10, 2015, 4:58 am

      This is Syria’s educated middle class. I feel terribly sorry for them but if Germany takes them in, who will be there to rebuild Syria when the war is over?

      how terribly sorry? sorry but you don’t think they should flee from danger because middle class people do not die in wars? and does it not occur to you that when the war is over people can return to build their country? your article and commentary implies they are fleeing syria because of economic hardship. don’t middle class people bleed where you come from? if they die, who will be there to rebuild Syria when the war is over?

      The civil war in Syria will end and they will need their able-bodied young men (most of the migrants are healthy young men), their doctors, engineers, nurses, and teachers.

      so you’d rather they stay and get slaughtered. that’s what you’d do in a war zone, if you were middle class?

      • MHughes976
        September 10, 2015, 10:57 am

        The Daily Telegraph article is written (as usual) in support of the policy of the Conservative government, taking in refugees but making sure or claiming to make sure that they can be returned in due course to whence they came. They are presented as deciding rationally, rather than panicking and as the sort of people who could quite easily fit back in to a restored Syria.
        I didn’t understand Browneyes to be saying that they have no right to come to our shores: people surely do have a right to flee war zones, a point I’ve often made re 48. I agree with her that the movement of people is making peace and reconstruction ever more difficult. Annie’s remarks remind us that when the guns are blazing nearby the distinction between a rational and a terrified or even panic-stricken decision is pretty hard to make.
        And of course the UK government’s attempts to treat the crisis with calm deliberation and to assure us that it can reverse its effects are nonsense. The refugees will bed down in our economies and those economies won’t be able to do without them. The medical practice I attend couldn’t recruit a new doctor for about 10 months and the same seems to be true of my 102-year old mother’s practice in a very different part of the country. A few well qualified Syrians might come in very handy.
        The most sinister thing is that according to another of today’s headlines the Government is thinking in terms of military intervention in Syria, presumably thinking of encouraging Obama in this direction, to be directed against Assad and against Islamic State. It’s true that the only way to have many of the refugees go home is to have the war end quickly but here are people thinking in terms of yet another Iraq or Libya.

      • Brown-Eyed Girl
        September 10, 2015, 3:15 pm

        No I am not saying that because they are middle class their lives don’t matter and that I would rather they get slaughtered. Surely, you should be able to read that. What I am saying is that Merkel’s desire to take in 800,000 of them is very good for those individuals but bad for the majority of Syrian people, who are not on boats. She seems to be trying to solve Germany’s demographic problems, -the German birthrate is well below replacement levels, with Syrians. It is patently unfair of Europe to offer permanent resettlement to Syria’s educated classes. This is not just a humanitarian gesture on Europe’s part. How is that compassionate to Syrians as a whole if Europe takes in hundreds of thousands, eventually in the millions of its most educated, citizens?? No, I don’t want them to stay and get slaughtered. I don’t have an answer as to how to end Syria’s civil war; no one does. I would like to see those refugees helped in neighboring countries. Much, much more help. Their Gulf State neighbors have not stepped up to offer sanctuary and temporary asylum or resettlement in anyway near the numbers European countries are expected to do.

      • CigarGod
        September 10, 2015, 4:06 pm

        Quite the nifty way to impose austerity upon reluctant nations, eh?
        Those darn bankers…always acting up.

      • talknic
        September 10, 2015, 3:57 pm

        Brown-Eyed Girl ” I would like to see those refugees helped in neighboring countries”

        Tried looking? They pass thru their already overcrowded refugee neighbours, all except for one. Israel!

        “Their Gulf State neighbors have not stepped up to offer sanctuary and temporary asylum or resettlement in anyway near the numbers European countries are expected to do.”

        Nonsense http://www.theage.com.au/world/migrant-crisis-why-arent-the-rich-gulf-arab-states-doing-more-20150909-gjj1hn.html

      • Annie Robbins
        September 10, 2015, 5:00 pm

        I would like to see those refugees helped in neighboring countries.

        i guess i am confused. how does it change the situation for syria, regarding your concern about not being “compassionate to Syrians as a whole if Europe takes in hundreds of thousands, eventually in the millions of its most educated, citizens?? ”

        do you mean if the most educated syrians go to a neighboring country vs a european country it would be better for syrians as a whole? besides, aren’t there over a million syrians in lebanon already? and maybe the US and other countries involved in supporting the syrian opposition from the get go should have thought about this a long time ago. syria took in millions of iraqi refugees and was one of the most stable countries in the ME before the western supported orange revolution, or whatever it was.

      • Mooser
        September 10, 2015, 6:10 pm

        “This is not just a humanitarian gesture on Europe’s part. How is that compassionate to Syrians as a whole if Europe takes in hundreds of thousands, eventually in the millions of its most educated, citizens??”

        Well, it might be that, if they follow the patterns of earlier immigrants, they will, if at all possible work and send money back to relatives in Syria. And many possibly returning when they feel it is safe.

  9. JLewisDickerson
    September 9, 2015, 10:46 pm

    RE: “During the Shoah, the US did give refuge to some Jewish intellectuals and artists, but turned away many more. In perhaps the most infamous episode of this deadly racism, 900 Jewish refugees who, fleeing fascism, traveled across the ocean on the ship the S. S. St. Louis, hoping to be granted asylum in the Land of the Free, were turned away. The US, in which anti-Semitism was widespread at the time, forced the refugees to return to Europe, where hundreds were then murdered by the Nazis.” ~ Ben Norton

    CERTAINLY NOT TO EXCUSE ANTI-SEMITISM IN THE U.S., BUT SEE:
    “The Hidden History of Zionism”, Chapter 6, by Ralph Schoenman

    [EXCERPT] . . . As late as 1943, while the Jews of Europe were being exterminated in their millions, the U.S. Congress proposed to set up a commission to ‘study’ the problem. Rabbi Stephen Wise, who was the principal American spokesperson for Zionism, came to Washington to testify against the rescue bill because it would divert attention from the colonization of Palestine.
    This is the same Rabbi Wise who, in 1938, in his capacity as leader of the American Jewish Congress, wrote a letter in which he opposed any change in U.S. immigration laws which would enable Jews to find refuge. He stated:

    “It may interest you to know that some weeks ago the representatives of all the leading Jewish organizations met in conference. . . It was decided that no Jewish organization would, at this time, sponsor a bill which would in any way alter the immigration laws.”

    . . .

    SOURCE – http://www.marxists.de/middleast/schoenman/ch06.htm

    ALSO SEE: “The Origin of the Palestine-Israel Conflict”, Third Edition (2001), Published by ‘Jews for Justice in the Middle East’:

    [EXCERPTS] . . . “In 1938 a thirty-one nation conference was held in Evian, France, on resettlement of the victims of Nazism. The World Zionist Organization refused to participate, fearing that resettlement of Jews in other states would reduce the number available for Palestine.” ~ John Quigley, ‘Palestine and Israel: A Challenge to Justice’
    “It was summed up in the meeting [of the Jewish Agency’s Executive on June 26, 1938] that the Zionist thing to do ‘is belittle the [Evian] Conference as far as possible and to cause it to decide nothing… ~ Israeli author Boas Evron, ‘Jewish State or Israeli Nation?’
    “[Ben-Gurion stated] ‘If I knew that it was possible to save all the children of Germany by transporting them to England, but only half of them by transporting them to Palestine, I would choose the second — because we face not only the reckoning of those children, but the historical reckoning of the Jewish people.’ In the wake of the Kristallnacht pogroms, Ben-Gurion commented that ‘the human conscience’ might bring various countries to open their doors to Jewish refugees from Germany. He saw this as a threat and warned: ‘Zionism is in danger.’” ~ Israeli historian, Tom Segev, ‘The Seventh Million’
    Roosevelt’s advisor writes on why Jewish refugees were not offered sanctuary in the U.S. after WWII•
    “[Roosevelt] proposed a world budget for the easy migration of the 500,000 beaten people of Europe. Each nation should open its doors for some thousands of refugees… So he suggested that during my trips for him to England during the war I sound out in a general, unofficial manner the leaders of British public opinion, in and out of the government…The simple answer: Great Britain will match the United States, man for man, in admissions from Europe…It seemed all settled. With the rest of the world probably ready to give haven to 200,000, there was a sound reason for the President to press Congress to take in at least 150,000 immigrants after the war…
    “It would free us from the hypocrisy of closing our own doors while making sanctimonious demands on the Arabs…But it did not work out…The failure of the leading Jewish organizations to support with zeal this immigration programme may have caused the President not to push forward with it at that time…
    “I talked to many people active in Jewish organizations. I suggested the plan…I was amazed and even felt insulted when active Jewish leaders decried, sneered, and then attacked me as if I were a traitor
    …I think I know the reason for much of the opposition. There is a deep, genuine, often fanatical emotional vested interest in putting over the Palestinian movement [Zionism]. Men like Ben Hecht are little concerned about human blood if it is not their own.” ~ Jewish attorney and friend of President Roosevelt, Morris Ernst, ‘So Far, So Good’

    ENTIRE “ORIGIN” BOOKLET – http://archive.org/details/TheOriginOfThePalestine-israelConflict

    • Bandolero
      September 9, 2015, 11:50 pm

      JLewisDickerson

      Thanks for the sources for this infamous part of zionist history. I’ld like to add a link to an excerpt from Sefer Min Hametzar by Rabbi Michael Ber Weismandel hosted by Neturei Karta, and there is also a link to the famous 10 questions of Rabbi Weismandel at the bottom of the site which are also related to the Jewish Agency’s position to jews fleeing from the holocaust to anywhere else than Palestine:

      http://www.nkusa.org/Historical_Documents/RakBedam.cfm

      These are the most damning accusations against Zionism I ever heard, though I have no idea how much truth is in these accusations. But I did a bit crosschekcing a while ago and I found it likely to be legit.

    • MRW
      September 10, 2015, 5:00 pm

      And another just recently:

      NY Jewish Congressman Slammed as ‘Traitor’ and ‘anti-Israel’ for Backing Iran Deal
      Orthodox politicians savage Democrat Jerrold Nadler, comparing him to rabbis who urged FDR to refuse sanctuary for Jews during the Holocaust.
      http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/.premium-1.672695

  10. Qualtrough
    September 9, 2015, 11:09 pm

    Thanks Bandolero. I was thinking the same thing but you said it so much better than I could.

  11. talknic
    September 10, 2015, 3:50 pm

    http://www.theage.com.au/world/migrant-crisis-why-arent-the-rich-gulf-arab-states-doing-more-20150909-gjj1hn.html

    “The Gulf countries – Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain and Kuwait – have been among the world’s largest donors to Syrian refugees, via United Nations agencies and private charities.”

    The Arab states have offered refuge in various forms. They have not offered resettlement. Bear in mind the fact that resettled people lose their RoR.

    ” Russia, Japan, Singapore and South Korea have also offered zero resettlement options.

    Kuwait is by far the most generous donor, delivering nearly one-third of all aid pledged to the Syrian crisis through the UN, or $US800 million since 2012, while the UAE has given $US364 million, Jane Kinninmont, the senior research fellow at the Middle East and North Africa Program at Chatham House, wrote on Tuesday.

    This is less than the $US1 billion from Britain or $US3 billion from the US, but considerably higher as a proportion of GDP, she notes”

    “Gulf states have taken in those fleeing war and persecution.

    Although they are never referred to as refugees, many Palestinians, Lebanese and Yemenis live in the Gulf after being displaced in conflicts in their own countries, notes Sultan Sooud al-Qassemi, a Gulf commentator and Media Labs Director’s Fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    “There also exists a precedent for the Gulf states taking in refugees,” he wrote in the International Business Times. “A quarter of a century ago hundreds of thousands of Kuwaitis were given refuge in the Gulf after the invasion … by Saddam Hussein.”

    Kuwait has granted its 120,000 Syrian residents long-term residency permits, which means that they would not be asked to leave if their legal status expires, Mr Qassemi says.

    The UAE has done the same for 242,000 of its Syrian residents, but providing permits to skilled workers is a world away from offering a safe haven for refugees, Michael Stephens, a research fellow in Middle East studies at the Royal United Services Institute, told Fairfax Media. ”

    “Despite the closed-door policy of the Gulf states, it is impossible for the West to say countries with large Arab or Muslim populations are not doing their fair share.”

  12. MRW
    September 10, 2015, 4:54 pm

    The “crazies” did this. The neocons. They picked a war with Syria for no good reason. After decimating Iraq and Libya.

    • Annie Robbins
      September 10, 2015, 5:04 pm

      exactly. more ‘birthpangs’ of a new middle east.

    • Kathleen
      September 10, 2015, 5:36 pm

      Collective group of psychopaths…really. Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, Libby, Addington Rumsfeld, Rice, Kristol, the whole horrific lot of them. They don’t give a rats ass who has died, been displaced, injured as they went after rearranging the middle east. When you add up how many have died in these unnecessary wars it is coming up close to those Hitler murdered. Ok ok I know not systematic but damn near. Knowing different religious factions would turn on one another after creating a terribly unstable situation. These cast of murderous characters knew what they were doing. I truly believe this

      • Brown-Eyed Girl
        September 10, 2015, 5:59 pm

        That’s the way I feel. Bush is sitting pretty in Crawford. Have you noticed we haven’t heard from him or Tony Blair or Condolezza? Not a word. All the migrants leaving Syria for Europe, they are the lucky ones. They get to start over in a new country, what about the ones left behind. There is no accountability for the Western leaders who decided to “bring democracy” to Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. They made a mess and they walked away. They will never be held accountable. Never. Not to sound stupid, but I did not know Assad offered a deal. What was it?

      • Mayhem
        September 10, 2015, 11:04 pm

        Australia to take 12,000 Syrian refugees and the United States 10,000 – this discrepancy is extraordinary.
        As for the usual lambasting of Israel (what can you expect from MW?) it is should be noted out that many countries simply jail illegal migrants or deport them immediately, which Israel does not do to the illegal asylum seekers from Africa. Measures are in place to help those who have been denied asylum or have not applied for asylum to be returned home or to other countries.
        Israel does not sending anyone by force to another country. The model of paying a third country to accept unwanted refugees is a new initiative. Israeli media have speculated that Israel could offer technology, favorable contracts, arms or other assistance, including cash, to countries that would accept the Africans and give them temporary visas.
        Israel has just released a large number of African migrants from the Holot detention centre and they are permitted to work anywhere except Tel Aviv and Eilat.
        Since the beginning of the Syrian War, the Ziv Medical Center, located in Golan Heights, along with several state-of-the-art Israeli field hospitals, has been set up to provide emergency medical aid to critically wounded Syrians.
        One of the most intriguing aspects of these medical centers is that they intentionally seek to minimize the evidence of their life-saving work. The painstaking effort they exert to accomplish concealing their efforts is done in order to protect Syrian refugees from their own friends and communities back in Syria, who might threaten those who associated with those they consider ‘Zionist enemies’ upon their return home.
        Israel has been providing aid to Syrian rebels, thus keeping the Druze in Syria out of immediate danger. Israel’s ongoing humanitarian assistance to Syrian rebel fighters, a source of growing conflict between Israel and its own Druze population, safeguards the minority population in Syria.
        P.S. I would appreciate my posts that negate black and white partisan positions presented by MW propagandists not be censored in order that discussion can be more honest and productive and not so one-sided.

      • Kay24
        September 11, 2015, 7:50 am

        They would not have dared to do this to white skinned, blue eyed, people. These war criminals are playing their sick war games with brown skinned Muslims. Also notice how they keep ignoring the war crimes of Israel? In fact they even aid and arm them. They are so nazi like.

      • Rusty Pipes
        September 11, 2015, 11:57 am

        Mayhem’s info about Israel’s medical care for Syrians is distorted. Israel is operating as Al Nusra Front’s MASH unit for operations in the Golan; the UN has reported observing the transport of wounded rebels across the fence into Israel’s custody. Druze in Syria, many of whom had attempted to remain neutral, have started supporting the SAA after some of their villages have been given the choice by Takfiri insurgents between conversion to Sunni Islam or massacre. Druze in the occupied Golan Heights have overwhelmingly supported Bashar Assad since the biginning of the Arab Spring. Israeli Druze, who serve in the Israeli army, have increasingly resisted Israel’s support for the Syrian insurgency.

      • zaid
        September 11, 2015, 2:10 pm
  13. Kathleen
    September 10, 2015, 5:31 pm

    Ben this is the most comprehensive piece I have read on the refugee situation. Thanks for reminding folks that the U.S. bloody meddling has caused much of this suffering.

    Talk about turning the middle east upside down.

    I keep thinking about what the Leverett’s were saying and writing about over five years ago. Encouraging the Obama administration to sit down and negotiate with Assad. Take the power sharing deal he was offering back then. Hundreds of thousands would be alive. Millions would not be refugees.

    I am always saying that there are 1 million Iraq refugees. Ben reports 3.3 million. What a hell on earth the U.S. created for that country. Worse than when Saddam was in charge.

    • MRW
      September 10, 2015, 6:43 pm

      Ben this is the most comprehensive piece I have read on the refugee situation.

      I concur. Good job.

    • MRW
      September 10, 2015, 7:17 pm

      Ben’s right about the refugee count, Kathleen. What’s a million are the deaths. Actually, about 1.2 mill, although there’s an “official” count out there that’s way way lower.

      People forget that the Pentagon under Rumsfeld stopped recording the numbers in 2006. I can’t remember all the details, and if our archives here went back to 2006, I could reference the Pentagon links. IIRC, their excuse was that the morgue counts weren’t reliable, and they thought people were making numbers up, or some such peesashit excuse.

      • Kathleen
        September 10, 2015, 10:10 pm

        Remember when the Lancet report came out in 2006 reporting that 650,000 (of course never a round number but what they reported) The Bush administration and war team slammed that report…swept it under the rug. So one would figure if that was the number then it would have to over a million dead. Iraq Body Count has a number much less as well as a Pentagon report that came out some years ago,

        All so shameful…and horrific for the Iraq people to have endured. Foxman sure is not concerned with these deaths

  14. JLewisDickerson
    September 10, 2015, 10:12 pm

    ■ HERE is another photo of that terrified boy in the top photo!

    IMAGE URL – http://www.unhcr.org/thumb1/54d9d9e06.jpg
    IMAGE SOURCE – http://www.unhcr.org/54d9e9e46.html

  15. Rusty Pipes
    September 10, 2015, 10:19 pm

    Whoa! Did I just tune in AlJazeera? While Norton does valuable reporting on Palestine, when he ventures into Syria (as he also did last year), we get humanitarian intervention promotion worthy of Samantha Power. Seven million of the refugees from war-torn Syria have taken shelter in government-controlled areas. Gulf states, which have had no qualms about supplying arms to insurgents, have fallen far short of their promised humanitarian aid for refugees for the past few years. Erdogan, who has supported the insurgency since before the Arab Spring, has pulled many stunts from his bag of tricks to pull the UN or NATO into an R2P intervention in Syria. He’s certainly not above pushing Syrian refugees out of Turkey’s camps and into Europe in his effort to get a ‘no-fly zone” for refugees in Northern Syria. But such motives can get lost easily in the flood of statistics about refugees.

    • echinococcus
      September 10, 2015, 11:16 pm

      Exactly! MW seems to have progressed a lot in seeing through Zionist and US Gov propaganda when it comes to Palestine, but continues to swallow it whole when it’s right next door.

  16. Froggy
    September 10, 2015, 10:42 pm

    Well according to Brittany’s regional newspaper, Le Télégramme, they’re here, and being made welcome:

    http://www.letelegramme.fr/monde/refugies-la-solidarite-a-l-oeuvre-10-09-2015-10767990.php

  17. kalithea
    September 11, 2015, 1:37 am

    War is to man as contamination is to the environment and both will drive our destiny towards self-imposed destruction.

    The most corrupt kingdoms on the planet have our fate in their hands. The U.S., Saudi Arabia and Israel conspired to destroy the Middle East, by falsely fueling illusions of democracy and then destroying the Arab hope of emancipation that emerged from that fraud to keep the Arab masses mired in chaos, weakness and misery.

    When these players make their destructive chess moves, with no afterthought for the catastrophic consequences that surely ensue the destruction of hundreds of thousands of lives are merely sanitized statistics for them – the price of power. There is no good will in anything they do only greed and lust for power drive them. All three want to reign supreme, the first over the world, the second over its gold-plated, oil-drenched fiefdom and the third over a mythical kingdom buried in the desert dust and manipulating the other two to hold onto a crime against the people whose land they usurped sending hundreds of thousands of refugees into permanent stateless exile and poverty and securing this crime with tentacles of influence reaching every seat of power only to resurrect a legacy lost forever with what they have done to attempt to recover it. A pox on all three. ISIS is the evil mutation that surfaced from their corrupt and twisted union. The unintended karma they generated. Is anyone surprised that these three continue to slam their door on the human tragedy they created?

    And who are we, the conscience-guided, but chattel restrained in our ever increasing militaristic police states marching uniformly with less individual power to rebel and denounce. Just ask Manning and Snowden and even the citizens of Ferguson how much we’ve surrendered to the cause of the corrupt 1% who lead us – we have less power today than we had yesterday to change this course and save ourselves and this material world from certain destruction. We have willingly surrendered our power with inaction and cowardice and with a myriad of mindless distractions. We too are guilty of the injustice the vulnerable suffer today.

    • CigarGod
      September 11, 2015, 10:51 am

      It is little known (by the average citizen)that by far, the largest office in our usa embassies is the Economic Office. In fact, for the most part, that is the only reason for an embassies existence. Other offices serve the economic offices. Other countries embassies are likewise structured. We do battle with each other…with our personnel and our financed proxies, to get what we want. Like we have always done, we supply arms to the guys we pay to do battle with us.

  18. ToivoS
    September 11, 2015, 2:13 am

    Ben Norton has a lot of anti Russian propaganda in this piece. He writes:

    Given their shaky legal status, the asylum-seekers’ rights as workers are frequently violated; many are exploited by Russian corporations, which tell them to accept low wages or “go back to Syria.”

    Interesting fact here. Where is the evidence for this? I have followed this story closely for 18 months and have not heard anything like this.

    Please do not accuse the Russians for not accepting war refugees. Today there are 2.5 million Ukrainians that live and work in Russia. After the Donbas region rebelled against the Kiev regime and Kiev army attacked that region, 600,000 Ukrainians fled into Russia. The Russian people and the their government have received them, provided them with aid and have tried to help them find jobs in Russia. This has been one major humanitaritan project. Ben Norton and his troll here, Renner, of course, ignore this important fact.

    • Keith
      September 11, 2015, 11:30 am

      TOIVOS- “Ben Norton and his troll here, Renner, of course, ignore this important fact.”

      It would be interesting to compare the status of refugees and undocumented workers in Russia versus Europe and the US. In the US, for example, undocumented workers fleeing the horrendous conditions in their countries caused by neoliberal globalization and imperial terror are treated rather poorly, particularly in view of the fact that their countries were more-or-less destroyed by the empire. It is no longer a case of divide and conquer, nowadays it has become divide and destroy. Third World countries are being destroyed intentionally for strategic reasons. Iraq, Libya, Ukraine and Syria are recent examples.

    • Rusty Pipes
      September 11, 2015, 11:42 am

      Early in the conflict, Russia evacuated thousands of Syrians with Russian relatives or connections. Considering the huge number of Chechens who have fought with the Syrian insurgency (many of whom have been killed, others of whom have married Syrian brides), Russia has good reason to be cautious about screening Syrians trying to cross its borders.

      • Boomer
        September 12, 2015, 7:44 pm

        Mr. Pipes, higher in the thread (no reply button) you mentioned that “Israel is operating as Al Nusra Front’s MASH unit for operations in the Golan . . .” Along similar lines, Juan Cole has some interesting comments about the confused role that the U.S. is playing in Syria:
        http://www.juancole.com/2015/09/years-israel-tempted.html

  19. Brewer
    September 11, 2015, 3:52 am

    A word from Deborah E. Lipstadt.

    Are these migrants fleeing for their lives, or are they trying to find a better economic and social future for their families? Some are coming because of intolerable and swiftly deteriorating security conditions; others may well see a strategic opening. We must be vigilant about humanitarian issues and more wary of an unquestioning open-door policy.
    What about Israel? In a rare personal turn, I find myself almost agreeing with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision not to accept any refugees. Israel has given extensive medical aid to Syrians caught in the bloody civil war. Many of them, while grateful, hide the fact that Israel helped them, and they do so because of the open hostility Syria’s citizens feel toward Israel.

    http://forward.com/opinion/320609/reasons-to-think-before-acting-on-migrants/

  20. Kay24
    September 11, 2015, 7:54 am

    Benjy must be in a bad mood these days….not only did the US give him a kick in the behind for trying to make it drop bombs over a Tehran, the EU has also sent him a strong message:

    “European Parliament Expresses Support for Labeling Settlement Goods
    This is first time the European Parliament expresses support for differentiating between Israel and settlements; Netanyahu says motion is unjustified and harms peace.
    read more: http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/.premium-1.675568

    Unfortunately, we would never see a similar ruling here in the US. Since nothing will be done
    in our government, perhaps BDS must push harder at the grass roots level. A few well placed billboards might enlighten our brain washed population, and make them aware what we aid and the consequences of our sick support of Israel.

  21. Theo
    September 11, 2015, 12:16 pm

    I live in Germany right in the middle of this new migration of millions and have a good contact to Hungary, so I can say not everything is so as you can read and see in TV reports.

    First of all, we must differentiate between real refugees, like those syrians and iraqis running for their lives, and economic migrants. The migrants in Germany to 40% are from Kosovo, Albania, Serbia, Romania and Macedonia, all are so called safe countries without war or political surpression. These countries are poor with very high unemployment and those coming are not real refugees, but migrants, and do not qualify as asylants. The payments they collect in Germany or Sweden are several times over what they can earn in their home country, so they come knowing that after 6 months or a year, after they are forced to return to home, they can do it with a nice savings in the bank.

    Hungary is constantly bashed by the media for its treatment of migrants. However, since years thousands cross the border illegally every month, who do not obey police orders, refuse to register as refugees and force their way into trains or busses on way to Germany. This coming weekend 20,000 are expected to cross into the country, that has 10 million population and is one of the poorer countries in the EU. They just do not have the means and finances to master this huge influx, just to see the magnitude, it is the same as 660,000 would force their way into the USA this coming weekend. Hungary had to master this without EU support, both financial and personal, meanwhile rich countries in the union just watch and do nothing, like France and GB. Also Germany until now, when they drown in this huge flow of humans.

    Yes, we have great problems with this huge migration, that is caused by the US and NATO wars in Iraq and in Syria, that was initiated by the west. Four years ago british and qatari special forces trained the first 1,200 “freedom fighters” in Libya, gave them plenty of weapons and money and spirited them into Syria through Turkey. A german journalist visited such a unit and found all members were nor syrer, but paid mercenaries from other arab countries, he saw at least a dosen different passports. Saudi Arabia finances that uprising ever since, their aim to get read of Assad and the shias under any circumstances, even if they destroy and depopulate that country.

  22. kalithea
    September 11, 2015, 1:24 pm

    I agree with those who want to leave Russia and Assad out of this, because first of all, before the big three sh#t disturbers (the U.S. Israel and Saudi Arabia) did their usual thing meddling in and invading countries in the region, you didn’t hear of hundreds of thousands of refugees streaming out of Syria, only out of Iraq thanks to the U.S. invasion there.

    The truth is that if you took a small country like Switzerland for example and emptied it out of its people and replaced them with all the refugees only the U.S. generated since Vietnam inclusive to the present, you’d probably be able to repopulate Switzerland in a viable way. This is the tragedy of U.S. policy. And yes, this includes ethnic Russian Ukrainian refugees that streamed into Russia because the U.S. is a sh#t disturber that meddles everywhere in its imperial quest to control every part of the planet from the Middle East to Asia to Eastern Europe you name it and it’s working on controlling the African Continent and meddling in South America’s politics as well.

    For some time now, Saudi Arabia is invading Yemen and generating a grave tragedy there as well, that is flying under the radar of world condemnation, like it helped to generate the tragedy in Syria.

    And we haven’t even mentioned U.S. sanctions policies that are wasting the economies of Iran and Russia and causing immeasurable suffering to millions of people trying to survive every day in a meagre way. And they’re not a bunch of far off aliens; they’re human beings like you and I. Some may disagree with their political system, but we can’t dictate to them when the truth is glaring: we have allowed other countries we like to go secretly nuclear and oppress millions of people and that hypocrisy is what generates suspicion, hostility and conflict.

    So calling out Russia and Assad is beyond the kettle calling the pot black and this deflects from the monumental injustice that the U.S. and Israel and Saudi Arabia are inflicting on the countries they meddle in, invade and destroy economically.

    • mcohen.
      September 11, 2015, 7:48 pm

      kalithea

      do not blame israel or the usa.

      the consequences of the first and second world war in europe are still being played out today.there is no escape from this fact

      couple that with the consequences of the industrial revolution and invention of the combustion engine and you then have a second diaster …..global warming from to much co2 being released

      israel has suffered the longest sandstorm in history……that is the future.

      a wave of sand……perhaps obama might recall one he experienced when he last visited israel

  23. MHughes976
    September 12, 2015, 6:10 am

    Perhaps one day the experience of Europe in accommodating refugees, the desperation of the Palestinians as more and more of their territory is gobbled up and the readiness of the United States to pay for Israel’s needs will come together to produce the great Palestinian population transfer, able to be presented as consensual, which is the gleam in many eyes.

    • Boomer
      September 12, 2015, 7:35 pm

      re “Perhaps one day the experience of Europe in accommodating refugees, the desperation of the Palestinians as more and more of their territory is gobbled up and the readiness of the United States to pay for Israel’s needs will come together to produce the great Palestinian population transfer, able to be presented as consensual, which is the gleam in many eyes.”

      Indeed, in one form or another, that seems almost inevitable at this point. Zionists have always said that the Palestinians should go to other Arab lands. I guess the Zionists wouldn’t object if they go to Europe instead, as long as they go.

      Perhaps someone (Obama, Netanyahu, Abbas, or ?) will pull some alternative out of a hat, but I’m not expecting it. Personally, I think the U.S. should take the Palestinians in, since we have played such a big role in their dispossession. Not that I think they should have to leave, but Israel won’t give back their homes–or give them rights and dignity–and the U.S. won’t make Israel do so. Or so it seems, absent that magic hat.

      • Boomer
        September 13, 2015, 6:28 am

        PS re “I think the U.S. should take the Palestinians in, since we have played such a big role in their dispossession.”

        Obviously, when it comes to fairness, the UK should help out too, given the role it played. Of course, saying “should” isn’t a prediction. Given Mr. Obama’s proposal to take in 10,000 Syrian refugees, and Mr. Cameron’s plan to take 20,000 over the next 5 years, I don’t expect to see either country taking in large numbers of the Palestinians we helped to displace.

  24. mcohen.
    September 12, 2015, 8:51 am

    mhughes976

    there is no such thing as a free ride,in either direction

    having said that,there is no shortage of nay sayers like yourself but finding a solution to a problem is a worthy endeavour.

  25. Stogumber
    September 15, 2015, 1:55 am

    I think that Ben Norton claims too much.

    Asylum rights are meant to protect people from war or persecution and so naturally end when the war or persecution period is finished. Insofar asylum rights ought to be temporary, not pemanent.

    Of course, after a time of observation, the asylum seeker may or may not apply for permanent citizenship; but that’s quite a different problem.

  26. Theo
    September 16, 2015, 12:21 pm

    This refugee problem in Europe is getting out of hand and the the person who is heating it up is the german Chancellor Angela Merkel personally. Her massage two weeks ago that Germany is ready to accept all syrian refugees have an echo all the way to the refugee camps in No. Iraq, and tens of thousand are moving toward Germany, where “they build houses for them and Mother Merkel will take care of them”, O-Tone of an interview seen on TV.

    In the EU there are 28 states and Merkel had no right to make such a statement, only all 28 head of those states can make such a decision. Now, when Germany is buried under the influx of refugees, suddenly all german politicians want other EU states to take in a part of the flood, invited by Merkel herself. Several east-european states refuse to do it, because they do not have the financial means to support them for years or even forever. Great part of the refugees have no professional skills, or even are analphabets and over 50 years old, therefore anyone can see that those are destined for the rest of their lives in a social net, getting paid without work.

    The Dublin agreement says that refugees must register in the first EU land they enter and apply for asylum. However since years Italy and Greece let them through and Germany was happy with that arrangement, because that country have no outside borders, therefore no initial entry point for refugees. This situation came to an end as hundreds of thousands came to visit “Mother Merkel”.

    We cannot surplant a whole nation in middle of Europe, therefore it is time that the UN or NATO makes sure that war ends and those millions in refugee camps get a decent meal a day. The UNHCR reduced the payment to $13 per month per person, too much to starve, but not enough to live, and we either take care of them properly, what will be much, much cheaper, or millions start tracking toward the west.
    We should also reconsider any future plan to start and support civil wars to replace a dictator. Many of those countries will fell apart if there are no strong hands to keep them togather, as many borders were drawn by the western colonial powers, without regards for nationalities.

    • Annie Robbins
      September 16, 2015, 1:40 pm

      Great part of the refugees have no professional skills, or even are analphabets and over 50 years old, therefore anyone can see that those are destined for the rest of their lives in a social net, getting paid without work.

      anyone can see a great part of refugees are illiterate, over 50 and destined not to work and live on social welfare for the rest of their lives?

      ah, maybe you should just speak for what you see.

      • Theo
        September 17, 2015, 9:43 am

        Thank you for your comment, however we should agree that I have a bit more information on this subject, as since months I closely follow the events.

        The german Minister of Employement, (and I hope you allow her to be an expert on this), made the following statement in a speech to the Parlament: “at best we can use only 10% of the incoming refugees for employement, the rest needs a long time for training”. First they must learn the roman alphabet, the german language and the high standard of skills required in this country.
        Since Germany expects up to 1 million coming this year, and half of million for the coming years, she indicated that this year alone up to 900,000 refugees go into the roles of social help, and that for years, estimated costs up to 10 billion euros per year! That is about 11.5 billion dollars.

        What do I see: I watch international coverage of this migration daily on several international TV and online. I see reports where many older people are reported to be alphabets and even the younger ones poorly educated. I watch US, english, german, hungarian, arab, russian and french reporters voicing their views and comments, EU politicians discussing the problems and what the local population thinks and says.
        Here I would like to add: great part of the refugees do not come from the war zones, but from the camps in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, where they were already safe.

    • diasp0ra
      September 16, 2015, 2:24 pm

      Please supply your claims with solid facts and statistics.

      Xenophobic speculation doesn’t cut it.

      Also, you’re fooling yourself if you think Merkel brought in the refugees for altruistic reasons, there is no such thing in international politics.

      • Theo
        September 17, 2015, 10:07 am

        diasp0ra

        The facts are in the internet, you just have to look fort it! Let me help you.
        Germany has a birth rate of 1.2 child per woman, it is same in most western countries, the population sinks constantly. German politicians and the industry say for years that this country needs about 500,000 immigrants per year to replace the shortage of births.
        Chancellor Merkel never does anything foolish, so it is the opinion of many journalists and politicians from other EU countries, that her call for all syrian refugees was not so much because of humanity, but to take care of the employees problems, because those who come so far are usually young. What she forgot is that those migrants must cross several other countries to reach Germany and the peoples living there do not like the damages caused to their properties. Croatia allows refugees only since today, and a CNN report shows already what happens when they march through an area.

        You probably heard this.” do you have a brain, please show it to me”. It is not my opinion what I wrote, but a collection of them from journalists and high ranking politicians, both german and other european countries. Believe me, the majority of them and the german population is not happy of that Merkel did, and it will have far reaching consequences for this country.

      • diasp0ra
        September 17, 2015, 12:50 pm

        @Theo

        I meant with regards to a “great deal” of the refugees being illiterate and unwilling to work and just want to cash in those benefit cheques. Has there been a study on the refugees showing their skills and their intentions?

        How on earth are people predicting future attitudes of refugees that aren’t even settled in anywhere? Without any solid statistical data on who they are?

        These are the sources im asking you for. Saying “it’s on the internet” is not a rebuttal. I could say the sky is green and ask you to go find the information on the internet. If you’re putting forward this claim, the burden of proof is on you, and not on me to go search for it.

  27. Mooser
    September 17, 2015, 6:40 pm

    Refugees, if they follow the usual pattern, will work if given the opportunity, and usually send money back to their families or communities remaining behind if they can. Some will want to go back when they feel it is safe.

  28. Theo
    September 18, 2015, 11:46 am

    You are correct, if you talk about the USA!

    However the refugee problem in Germany ist nothing new, only the magnitude is unusual, every year more than 100,000 people come and ask for asylum. The problem is, german laws do not allow them to work until their status is clear and approved, and it takes an average of 8.5 months to have that done. Meanwhile the refugee, most of them do not qualify, because they come from the Balkan states., collect a monthly income, their rent is paid, etc.
    If they are turned down, according to german laws they have the rights to sue in a court, what may take a year or more. If they lose, they have the right to go to an appeals court, meanwhile years went by, they could not work, but collect social help, what in Germany may add up to more than a low paid german may earn. I know cases where a turned down person is still here after 7 years, man cannot deport him, because he will not reveal his home country.

    That is the reason why they all want to come to Germany or to Sweden, both countries pay to refugees several time of what they earn at home.
    I remember in the 1970s, when in the communist eastern Europe the following slogan went around: “go to Sweden and you do not have to work for the rest of your life”! Today Germany is in the same class, paradise on Earth.

    Not to be misunderstood, we must help those poor people, however this stamped will only turn the local population against them. Europe should have done what the USA , Canada, GB and Australia do, sent people to the refugee camps in Lebanon and Jordan, collect those who fit into the society hear and the country benefit from their work, and fly them here. There are about 4-5 million refugees from Syria and Iraq and no way can take Europe all of them.

    The other problem is security. An example: a few days ago a train was sent from Munich to Berlin, about 400 miles, it started with ca. 520 refugees, none of them documented, and in Berlin there were only about 340 on the train. About 35% just took off, and we must ask, who were they and where did they go? What would the USA do if millions of refugees force their way into the country, refuse to be registered, do not follow police intsructions and just spread all of the country? Stupid question, I worked over 40 years on high security DoD installations and know what we would do. Stop or we shoot!

    • Mooser
      September 18, 2015, 1:00 pm

      “What would the USA do if millions of refugees force their way into the country, refuse to be registered, do not follow police intsructions and just spread all of the country?”

      So tempted to say: “Oh, don’t get all verklemperer over it! We built a great country out of that. Yes, exactly that.”

      • Theo
        September 19, 2015, 11:16 am

        Yes, Mooser, but that was a long time ago!!!
        Today we have a wall on the border to Mexico, where armed troopers pick up any intruders or let them die of thirst in the desert.
        On the airports they search you and if you have a dark skin, you get arrested and sent back where you came from.
        We should not be hollier than the Pope, hypocracy is most disturbing.

    • diasp0ra
      September 18, 2015, 1:17 pm

      “Not to be misunderstood, we must help those poor people, however this stamped will only turn the local population against them. Europe should have done what the USA , Canada, GB and Australia do, sent people to the refugee camps in Lebanon and Jordan, collect those who fit into the society hear and the country benefit from their work, and fly them here.”

      There are two contradicting ideas in that sentence. What you’re suggesting is immoral. What you’re suggesting is basically a new form of social eugenics, where the “good brown people that can be used” are taken and put to work and leave the rest to die. Then claim you’re saving them.

      If you don’t want to take in refugees, that’s your call. If you do, all the power to you. But you can’t pick and choose literally choosing who to save from death based on your own interests and how it can benefit you. It’s disgusting that you even suggest it, and it reveals far more about YOU and the way you think than it does about refugees.

      • Theo
        September 19, 2015, 11:29 am

        Don´t be hypocritical!
        The USA and Canada screen every immigrant, and if they bring money or have a profession that is beneficial to the country, they may come!
        What about those millions of south and central americans who would love to enter the USA, but that barbed wire fence on the border, the armed patrols, etc. make it impossible.

        You preach morality? We the USA are the cause of this great problem in the Near East, we destroyed the state of Iraq and supported the uprising in Syria and support every bloody dictator who dance to our tune.
        If we want to be moral, according to you, then we should take all the 5 million refugees from Syria and the same number from Iraq, without any selection. They all may come!
        You must learn that politics and servival have absolutly nothing to do with moral, each nation must do what is beneficial to the country.
        We do that constantly, don´t we?

      • diasp0ra
        September 19, 2015, 5:21 pm

        @Theo

        Once again you misunderstand me.

        There is a world of difference between immigrants and refugees. Of course immigrants are to be screened. Refugees should not and do not go through the same process because you can’t decide who lives and dies by how useful they are to you.

        Nobody is saying take in all the 5 million. I’m saying, that those that you do take in should be admitted on a humanitarian basis (because they are refugees) regardless of how “useful” they can be to your country.

        You keep conflating immigrants and refugees and using them interchangeably when there is a world of difference between them.

      • Mooser
        September 19, 2015, 9:42 pm

        `“There is a world of difference between immigrants and refugees.”

        Thanks, “diasp0ra” for reminding at least me that the two terms are not interchangeable.

  29. Mooser
    September 19, 2015, 3:06 pm

    “If we want to be moral, according to you, then we should take all the 5 million refugees from Syria and the same number from Iraq, without any selection. They all may come!”

    It’d be the best goddam thing that ever happened to Germany! It’ll be the making of you. Do you more good than you thought possible, and you’ll be a happier better people for it.

    • Theo
      September 21, 2015, 10:34 am

      Mooser, I carry the same passport as you do, just happen to live in Germany, and it is not my job to tell the germans what to do and what not about about their future, and I have the feeling that they also do not need your advice! My intentions were to inform the MW crowd about this great problem facing the west.

      There is no need to keep beating on a dead horse, I have the feeling that you talk about something what you do not understand, experience is not what you can learn at Yale or Harvard!
      The USA caused all this problems in the Middle East, so if we want to talk about moral, then I miss the US offer to take a few hundred thousand of those refugees. We are responsible for their misery. The country is 20 times larger than Germany, with a lot of open space, we could easily put in the whole nation of Syria and Iraq! However, those dirty terrorists lurk all over and we cannot differentiate between the good ones and the bad ones, so let the germans take the chance, nicht wahr?

      • Mooser
        September 21, 2015, 5:45 pm

        “The USA caused all this problems in the Middle East, so if we want to talk about moral, then I miss the US offer to take a few hundred thousand of those refugees. “

        The USA should certainly host more than a mere couple of hundred thousand. I’m sure we can manage more than that, and our obligation, as you say is greater still.

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