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Mon Apr 20, 2015, 08:56 AM

 

On immigration, the language of genocide has entered the mainstream

Desperate people die at sea and are talked of as insects, not human at all. This is the natural conclusion of the toxic attitudes on proud display in British politics.


Mediterranean migrant boat disaster victims' bodies arrive in Malta – video

The politician who promises control of all borders, and pledges to further strengthen that control by withdrawing further from Europe, is selling a simplistic idea. This idea is now indeed itself Europe-wide, as the toxic language around immigration has moved from the margin into the mainstream.

If we are encouraged to project all the problems we face around education, housing, employment and health on to one group of people, our lives are made easier and their deaths more likely. The fact that it’s not true, that immigrants are not the source of our problems, no longer matters. The “tell it as it is” crowd don’t tell it as it is at all. They are cowards.

Our political class, both Tory and Labour, has been pulled so far right that it cannot, and will not, tell the complicated truth about the consequences of conflict, about a globalised economy, about our interconnected world, a world that we cannot simply step off, or stop.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/apr/20/immigration-language-of-genocide-british-politics

_______________________

Outstanding opinion piece from the Guardian.

For Tory and Labour you could substitute Republican and Democrat, and for Mediterranean migrants, substitute Latin American migrants.

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply On immigration, the language of genocide has entered the mainstream (Original post)
Surya Gayatri Apr 2015 OP
pampango Apr 2015 #1
Surya Gayatri Apr 2015 #3
mylye2222 Apr 2015 #2
Surya Gayatri Apr 2015 #4
malaise Apr 2015 #5
Surya Gayatri Apr 2015 #6
pampango Apr 2015 #7
Surya Gayatri Apr 2015 #8

Response to Surya Gayatri (Original post)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 09:23 AM

1. "Our political class ... has been pulled so far right ... it will not tell the complicated truth

about the consequences of conflict, about a globalised economy, about our interconnected world, a world that we cannot simply step off, or stop."

... all the problems we face around education, housing, employment and health on to one group of people. The fact that it’s not true, that immigrants are not the source of our problems, no longer matters. The “tell it as it is” crowd don’t tell it as it is at all. They are cowards. As we have veered rightwards, pulled there often by out-and-out racists, the only stance seen as vote-winning is to be ever more “tough” on immigrants.

The far right’s fantasy of pulling up the drawbridge to stop this great flow of desperate humanity in transit is just that: a fantasy. The politician who promises control of all borders, and pledges to further strengthen that control by withdrawing further from Europe, is selling a simplistic idea. This idea is now indeed itself Europe-wide, as the toxic language around immigration has moved from the margin into the mainstream.

Many drown anonymously. Their stories on the whole do not interest us, as they are too complex. Too many countries are involved, too much conflict, too many journeys push them out to sea. ... We feel we have no responsibility to them, still less understanding of who they are. They are simply “other”. The discourse of the BNP, the EDL, and now Ukip – which, whatever it says, attracts out-and-out racists – has contaminated public life.

How did we end up in this moral vacuum where we lose any sense of connection to other human beings? It’s fairly easy: people who aren’t human beings don’t need any rights, or any sympathy, so we dehumanise them via language both political and personal. We talk of them as disease, contagion, a virus. They are not us. They cannot become us.

This is an excellent opinion piece not only in its indictment of the far-right and its anti-immigrants sentiments (rooted in racism), but its condemnation of mainstream parties that have been pulled to the right by the constant, simplistic drumbeat of anti-immigrants pressure from the far-right.

The far-right does love to avoid 'complicated truths', preferring to dumb things down to a populist "US vs THEM" message that seems to work well for them at election time. The 'complications' of an interconnected world - immigration, climate change, trade, communications, etc. - can all be solved, in their minds, by 'building a higher wall to keep the world out.

I would disagree however that for "Tory and Labour you could substitute Republican and Democrat, and for Mediterranean migrants, substitute Latin American migrants". There is certainly a tremendous amount of anti-immigrant sentiment in the republican party but I don't think the Democratic Party has been dragged as far to the right on immigration policy as Labour may have been. Polls in the US show that a more pro-immigrant policy is actually quite popular with American voters but the republican party - particularly its tea party wing - is able to block any legislation on immigration reform.

Thanks for finding and posting this excellent article, Surya Gaytri.

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Response to pampango (Reply #1)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 09:32 AM

3. Glad you appreciated it, pampango. I like how

 

the author thinks.

True that: "...I don't think the Democratic Party has been dragged as far to the right on immigration policy as Labour may have been."

I was painting with a bit of a broad rhetorical brush there.

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Response to Surya Gayatri (Original post)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 09:27 AM

2. French RW/Far right.

 

Talk about them as "nuisance" and "parasite" As well as with the poors. Those arz labelled "profotors" " treachers" "lazy".

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Response to mylye2222 (Reply #2)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 09:33 AM

4. Sounds like the author knows 'chère Marine' personally.

 

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Response to Surya Gayatri (Original post)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 09:38 AM

5. Never forget that it was Cameron and Sarkozy who pushed for the overthrow

of Gadaffi - imperialists never change.
They are all war criminals because they (along with Bush Cheney, et al) created the mess that is the Middle East and North Africa today.

Racism, greed, plunder and genocide - that's all they know and practice - sometimes they disguise it well for the sheeple.
Heard one this morning saying they have to do something about this catastrophe before people no longer believe that they believe in human rights and dignity - as if they ever gave a flying fuck.

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Response to malaise (Reply #5)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 09:41 AM

6. The French saw the 'liberated' Libya as a lucrative new

 

market for lots of military toys.

After the US and Russia, Britain and France are
the biggest arms traders in the world.

Then there's Israel, who's pretty high up on that list.

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Response to Surya Gayatri (Original post)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 11:42 AM

7. Marine Le Pen just weighed in on the refugee catastrophe and France's role in Libya

Migrants tragedy: France's Marine Le Pen clashes with Nicolas Sarkozy on Twitter over deaths

The leader of France's far-right Front National (FN) party has accused Nicolas Sarkozy of having "ignited a fire in the region" by deciding to support military intervention in Libya in 2011. Marine Le Pen's attack comes after the former president said he hopes for "a real immigration policy of the European Union" following the Mediterranean migrant tragedy that claimed more than 900 lives.

While French President François Hollande denounced the stinking as a "catastrophe" and called people smugglers "terrorists" on French TV's Canal+ on Sunday (19 April), Sarkozy expressed his "emotion and (his) sadness after the shipwreck in the Mediterranean" in a Tweet.

Le Pen, however, blasted Sarkozy's tweet, questioning how he "dared play firefighter" before accusing him of having, by his "foreign policy, set fire to the region and increased migratory pressure", without alluding to the French military intervention in Libya, which Sarkozy approved in 2011 when he was still president and strongly booed by the FN leader.

Referring to "frightening" illegal immigration numbers coming out of Libya, Le Pen said the "grisly results of this illegal immigration (which) is heavily growing with dozens or even hundreds of additional deaths (...) are the direct consequences of the strategic mistake that was the unforgivable intervention in Libya in 2011, led by Nicolas Sarkozy and supported by François Hollande."

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/migrants-tragedy-frances-marine-le-pen-clashes-nicolas-sarkozy-twitter-over-migrants-death-1497339

Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi signed a contract of £50 million with the European Union to stop immigrants from entering Europe through Libya.

Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi had demanded for £4.1 billion a year from the European Union to stop illegal immigration which “threatens to turn Europe black”. Colonel Gaddafi made the demand as he ended his controversial two-day visit to Italy ...

http://voixdexils.ch/2011/01/31/european-union-pays-gaddafi-to-fight-immigration/

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Response to pampango (Reply #7)

Mon Apr 20, 2015, 11:55 AM

8. On the surface of it, she's right that Sark's

 

"foreign policy set fire to the region and increased migratory pressure", as did the foreign policy of the coalition that participated.

But, in reality, she doesn't give a flying 'F' about the "dozens or even hundreds of additional deaths" . She's pandering to her base and angling to skim off RW voters from Sark's 'Parti Republicain'.

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