A popular meme is to contrast the European attitude to accepting Muslim refugees and other migrants because they are like the Jews so horribly let down in the 1930s. The habit of otherwise liberal westerners to equate Jews and Muslims and essentially challenge people not to be the made up Islamaphobia label.
I think there are stark differences:-
- Number. There were far less Jews initially fleeing Austria and Germany. There are only 15 million Jews now after 73 years without a Western pogrom. More Muslims just in Syria. Now the world has absorbed a million Lebanese over the last few years. Germany has taken a million refugees. Those numbers are not even going to scratch the surface and even the Germans in desperate need of labour have stopped. Leaving Greece and Italy the two victims of their over weaning trap of the Euro to try to sort it.
- The Jews were fleeing murder and oppression, yes as well. However they were not part of a murderous civil war built on religious ideas in many quarters – yes most Syrians are not fundamentalists but you still have to vet and that is costly and time consuming.
- Not sure how many strapped explosives to themselves and children and blew up ordinary Germans but the number is small. The point being even if 99% per cent are secular women and gay loving Muslims (which UK educated Muslims are not) it’s the 1% that breeds the 0.001% that needs vetting. The Jewish refugees had 0 combatants in their numbers and few who professed a ‘divine wind’ view of their life.
- There may well have been militant Jews and one could never excuse The Settlements but even the lunatic anti Zionists can hardly claim that part of Jewish ideology was a threat to UK or USA in the 1930s.
- Israel, the Jewish State as some would call it, accepts all Jews from all over the world. Yet find an Arab state wanting to take the millions of Syrian refugees? Why? Do they fear sectarian violence or is that just Islamaphobia in the West? Yes Jordan and Turkey and no doubt Iraq have taken many but not so much by choice and policy.
The West should do more and we should offer more but with many Western societies bitterly divided it seems silly and a drop in the ocean given the scale of the problem to think that easily absorbing the numbers is possible and not destabilising. The cost of providing a life in the locality will be less than taking refugees.
The most risible part is the sick and cynical onion in hankies like Yvette Cooper and Labour who having dismantled large parts of the state say we should take the most vulnerable and in need of support, unaccompanied children. We cannot even get accurate ages never mind support our own mentally ill (and physically ill) and are cutting support to the disabled and sick. All continuations of Labour policy. It’s a virtue signal and a sick cynical one at that.
I’d like to do more and offer more. I think the West’s meddling means we should look to allow more people to come here but need to do far more in the region. However to argue as currently configured say UK should absorb large numbers is puritan denial – it would probably be bad outcomes for everyone and especially dislocated children. For people who have dismantled the state and support for vulnerable people and undermined social workers etc to demand it is despicable.