How two unfortunate photo-ops engendered Europe's migrant crisis.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel suffers from a decided lack of charm and charisma. One particularly slow news day last July, she endured a clumsily choreographed photo-op with a gaggle of teenage students that prompted newspaper headlines around the world to crow: “Merkel makes Palestinian refugee girl cry!”
This so-called “refugee” (born and raised in Lebanon, actually) had suffered an unfortunate auto accident leaving her partially paralyzed and in need of expensive medical attention. Her family opted to exploit Germany’s generous asylum laws, which granted cost-free medical care while they awaited a prolonged decision on their spurious application for asylum. According to social media archives, this precocious and outspoken teenager vilified Israel’s very existence. Hamas would indeed be proud.
Needless to say, “refugee status” cannot be inherited from generation to generation, so Chancellor Merkel correctly reminded her:
“You’re right in front of me now and you’re an extremely nice [sic] person. But you also know in the Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon are thousands and thousands and if we were to say you can all come ... we just can’t manage it.”
To the chancellor’s dismay, the teenager burst into tears before TV cameras. The iron-hearted chancellor clumsily caressed the girl’s tear-stained cheek, but to no avail. Yellow journalism enjoyed a field day, and Merkel’s approval ratings plummeted. As a result, Germany’s gates swung wide open and the refugee flood became a tsunami. Germans would just have to “manage it” while their chancellor twirled about like a weather vane.
The ensuing chaos overwhelmed Germany’s neighbors. Balkan wage-earners (especially Albanians and Serbians) quickly realized they could receive more money from the Germans as “refugees” than by staying on the job. The Balkans’ economy swooned as workers took “German holidays” by jumping on the migrant bandwagon.
A dire situation then became more desperate. Russia and Turkey, with Iranian collusion, invaded Syria. All who opposed Syrian President Bashir Assad’s genocidal madness were crushed. A new surge of geo-political pawns sought safe haven. A venal Vladimir Putin (still chaffing under European economic sanctions) spitefully provided passage over the Arctic Circle via Russia into Scandinavia.
Meanwhile, Germany’s progressive press smeared Hungary’s Prime Minister as a “Nazi,” merely for reiterating Angela Merkel’s earlier objections. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán correctly observed that Europe simply could "not manage” to accommodate all economic migrants who wanted to improve their lot, now including countless Afghans, sub-Saharan Africans, and a myriad of impoverished Middle Eastern paupers able to purchase bogus Syrian identity papers readily available in Turkey. Meanwhile, ISIS fanatics jumped on board this unimpeded rush across European borders, hiding behind the skirts of innocent civilians.
That would explain how so many “migrants” arriving in Munich’s Haupbahnhof seem to bear uncanny resemblances to photos previously posted on ISIS’s social media sites. Genocidal war criminals are managing to escape justice under assumed identities while establishing sleeper cells with impunity. With these facts in mind, cooler heads urged caution, and Europe’s press, ever so gradually, began to couch their previous impetuous exuberance in more judicious tones. At last, sanity would prevail, it was thought. Security would surely trump political correctness. Then, just as Europe’s resolve wavered, yet another photo-op presented itself. A toddler’s corpse fortuitously washed upon Turkey’s sandy shores.
The toddler was Aylan Kurdi. His father, an uneducated barber, speaks neither English nor French and is unable to qualify as an immigrant to Canada. Mr. Kurdi also cannot claim refugee status while registered and gainfully employed in Turkey. Unfortunately, Mr. Kurdi requires new dental implants costing over €1000. Since Mr. Kurdi’s sister (already residing in Canada) cannot afford this expense, Aylan’s grandfather proffered the ready remedy: Generous Germany provides cost-free dentistry to migrants. Jump the queue and hightail it to Germany before the gates are shut.
To be sure, human traffickers did not victimize the Kurdi family. Mr. Kurdi even remains accused of owning and manning the very rubber dinghy that killed his own family. Turkey has since offered Mr. Kurdi full citizenship, a magnanimous proposition Mr. Kurdi ungraciously declined. It would appear he prefers the lucre of financial largesse still available to “migrants” elsewhere.
Curiously, even on the eve of the Hajj, Arab nations still refuse refuge to their own kith and kin. That said, Saudi Arabia has “graciously” volunteered to construct 200 new German mosques. However, these mosques must embrace the Saudi’s Wahabi/Salafi austere interpretation of Islam, including the salient dogma that devout Muslims never befriend Christians nor Jews. In some ironic reprise of history, a future Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe may eventually need to consider a different European Anthem that no longer invokes the “Brotherhood of Man.”
Yet again, the canaries in proverbial coalmines prove to be those stalwart Jews who stubbornly stay put in Europe, even after the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack. Already from Malmö to Marseille, pious Jews dare no longer wear yarmulkes in public. Already, entire neighborhoods, even entire cities such as Duisburg, have become “police no-go zones.” On “al Quds Day” especially, waves of Islamist demonstrations extinguish any residual pretense of law and order. Shrill and strident cries of “Hamas Hamas – Juden ins Gas” evoke cosmopolitan yawns of insouciance instead of bitter tears of Christian outrage. Fear for the future is not unique to Jews, nor does it constitute Islamophobia. Even His Highness, the Ismaili Imam Agha Khan, begins to sleep most uneasily in his French bed, while the words of his Prophet are perversely distorted by unworthy imposters.
Human suffering cannot be dismissed nor ignored. Clearly, Europe and the rest of the world are obliged to rescue any and all in peril. Europe opted for bankruptcy in lieu of boots on the ground. In an orgy of misguided good intentions, Merkel’s’ followers prostrated themselves before the altar of political correctness. The promise of free room and board to the lucky few who manage to find their way to European shores is a Band-Aid found wanting to staunch the bloodshed in Syria. Such misled half-measures even fail to offer a long-term remedy to those displaced souls who successfully sought safety abroad. Europe’s future now remains almost as bleak as Syria’s.
Tom Mueller’s eclectic career ranged from a roughneck on Albertan oilrigs to cancer research in a French laboratory.