The growing "refugee" crisis in Calais has been attracting media attention for some time. The sight of thousands of people living in squalor in camps around the port and then storming the security fences causes the usual polarisation of opinion as is the norm in all discussions about immigration these days. It's all "keep them all out" or "let them all in" depending on whether you read the Daily Express or Socialist Worker, neither of which appealing publications.
There are no countries in this world that have an "open borders" policy which would allow the total free movement of people but there are none (except perhaps North Korea) that prevent any immigration at all as far as I am aware. People move around the world to live and work all the time and have done so since time immemorial.
The problem arises when large numbers of people try to move and then countries have to decide how many, if any of any particular group they will allow in. The root causes of the current influx at Calais are varied and many would be migrants do not come from war zones but are in fact economically driven, not a crime in itself, but one that does differ from those escaping say ISIS or even North Korea, though the latter are not perceived as a problem.
Like most people I do support immigration controls and believe that there are limits to the number of people that can be settled in the UK and that the legitimacy of such applicants should be checked. No country, the UK included can take every would be refugee in the world and to call for open borders is both impractical and a cause for potential conflict.
There is no easy solution to the refugee crisis whether it be in Calais or the large numbers trying to come to Europe by boat across the Mediterranean, but it does occur that the solution lies at source and the world community needs to deal with the situations that cause the various crises.
And more to the immediate point the criminal gangs who traffic the majority of these people and make huge amounts of money.
Currently both the the UK and French Governments seem to have (somewhat belatedly) sitting down to get something done. But like all things it will take time to get done.
In the meantime the nightly violence that takes place is to no ones benefit.
Except it would seem some Anarchists.
I noticed in The Times this morning that some political activists allegedly from Open Borders (a pro-immigration organisation are getting involved and inflaming an already volatile situation for their own twisted ideological ends regardless of the consequences.
The Daily Mail reports:
At Sunday’s protest, a British man wearing a scarf around his face could be seen washing tear gas from his eyes after police broke up a crowd of 100 migrants lying in the road. Earlier that day, the same man was seen filming the scene, claiming the group hoped to document alleged police brutality
One British activist, Tim Woolrich, 48, from York, who sleeps in a caravan at the migrant camp in Calais, told The Sun last week: ‘We teach them how to pass the asylum exam. Of course we want them to cross the border.
‘They deserve to get to the UK.’ A statement on the No Borders website reads: ‘No Borders is an anti-capitalist movement. Borders are created by, and serve, capitalist elites.’
It adds: ‘Many, though not all, people in the No Borders network also think of ourselves as anarchists.
‘We believe a world without borders must also mean a world without states.
Even if that is their belief, how they think stirring up people in a desperate situation is going to help is irresponsible. But then we are talking about Anarchists, most of whom seem to be Nihilists than anything else. Having seen them put masks on and then tool up to riot on the Pensions march a few years back I am not impressed with their antics.
Like all extremists these so-called anarchists put ideology first regardless of the consequences.
Open borders is not an option.
Neither is using refugees in such a cynical way.