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The Global Refugee Crisis
Half-Measures on Migration

Malaysia and Indonesia reversed themselves on the issue of receiving refugees, deciding to provide shelter after all to thousands of boatpeople trapped at sea after fleeing Burma and Bangladesh. But the relief will only be temporary, and, in an attempt to discourage future refugees, will extend to just 7,000 migrants. Thailand, whose crackdown on human trafficking helped to create the crisis, remains opposed to taking in any migrants, though it said it will provide medical care to the sick among the boatpeople.

The UN welcomed the new policy of Malaysia and Indonesia, but in Europe the plan to route the migrants to EU member states isn’t faring as well. French President François Hollande doubled down on earlier remarks by the country’s PM Manuel Valls opposing a EU migrant quote:

 “It’s out of the question to have immigrant quotas because we have rules” on border checks and policies for overseeing immigration, Mr Hollande said. “People who come because they think that Europe is a prosperous continent . . . must be escorted back, that’s the rule,” Mr Hollande said at a press conference with Angela Merkel, the German chancellor.

Spain has also now come out against the details of the EU plan, putting it in the camp with not only France but also the UK, which was the first nation to oppose the scheme.

Ultimately, of course, neither of these are lasting solutions. And problems like these are only likely to multiply and fester if there is any serious decline of American power and will to support a world order.

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  • Pete

    So, to prevent the massive shifts of Third World illegal immigrants into Europe, the U.S. must police the world.

    Now that’s a unique argument for a muscular U.S. foreign policy.

  • Dan Greene

    So where in all this hubbub is any criticism of the government of Burma? You know–the country from which the Rohingya were actually forced out. Remember back in the day when the US government and media spared Burma no criticism? When we heard almost daily about that brave political dissident, Aung San Suu Kyi, and the evil junta, etc, etc.

    And then something magical happened. Burma “opened to the West” and instead of being the creatures of Beijing, they were now members of the “international community.” Since then, it seems that the USG and media have lost all interest in “human rights” in Burma, because, now they’re kind of on our team, you know, so we need to be a little discrete.

    So we hear about what Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines, and even the EU are doing but nothing on why no pressure is brought to bear on Burma to solve ITS problem. R2P??? What’s that??? The hypocrisy of our media and government almost qualifies as some sort of psychological condition.

    And of course, as Pete points out, the last sentence of this piece, the de rigueur TAI plea that every bad thing in the world is somehow tied to the decline in American power, is merely comical.

  • Anthony

    “And problems like these are only likely to multiply and fester if there is any serious decline of American power and will to support a world order.”

    “The United States is, by far, the world’s most powerful nation. That does not mean that the United States can – or has an interest to – solve the problems of the world, contain the forces that are at work or stand in front of these forces and compel them to stop. Even the toughest guy in the bar can’t take on the entire bar and win.”

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