You’ve heard of course of the hundreds of thousands of Middle Easterners and North Africans sailing to Greece to get to Macedonia to get to Serbia to get ultimately and mostly to Germany.
You might even know of a nearly equal number from west and North Africa seeking asylum in France, because they’re native French-speakers.
You’ve probably given a slight ear to news reports about all the political fighting going on right now in Europe and especially Greece and Italy about what to do with the (yes) millions of immigrants who’ve besieged those countries in the last decade.
But do you know anything about these people? These individuals? Whether you want to call them refugees or illegals or desperados or whatever, do you have any idea what these people are really like?
You’d be surprised.
Check this out: an aggressive German journalist is right now traveling with a group of refugees from Aleppo trying to illegally get into Germany. Follow him on Twitter and Periscope by clicking here.
This is real-time journalism and here’s what you’ll find out about these refugees:
1. They’re rich.
2. They’re educated.
3. They’re young.
4. Most are professionals.
And that’s as true for a Libyan or Zimbabwean as a Syrian. There’s an incredible similarity between these fleeing peoples whether they are starving Guatemalans trying to enter the U.S. for a meal, or professionals fleeing bombs from war-torn Libya into France.
If you remove any one of the first three of those characteristics of a typical refugee listed above, they’d never make the journey.
It’s ridiculously expensive for a refugee. Many illegal immigrants from Central America pay upwards of $20,000 to get help sneaking into Texas.
It’s true all over the world.
Only an educated person who can read and speak multiple languages, navigate signs and maps and figure out the necessary deception and convincing to get past authorities has a chance of making it.
It’s strenuous. There’s a lot of walking, bushwacking, sleep deprivation … few but young people are capable of this.
But why professionals? Because in a stressed society, they suffer the most. They’ve made the greatest investment in their lives and are enjoying no return.
Richard Dowden of the Royal African Society has been writing about African refugees for years: “This is not a new problem. It is called globalisation,” he reminds us.
I’ve also written about refugees from northern Africa fleeing to South Africa. See that reference for my profile of Hemadet, shown in the picture above opposite Donald Trump. In fact in that blogpost several years ago I asked, “how soon will there be millions?”
Well, there are right now.
So rethink this refugee, illegal immigrant issue, please! These are not rapists, murders and criminals. A single one of them probably has greater personal character and life accomplishment than the entire bunch of politicians now quibbling over them.
And if borders were thrown wide open and all these people welcomed without question, they’d probably solve all our problems a lot quicker than we’ll ever be able to do ourselves.