Monday, August 31, 2015

The Question They're Not Asking

There's plenty of angst in Germany over the arrival of waves of migrants/refugees such as thousands of Syrians fleeing the civil war that has brought so much misery to their homelands.

Der Spiegel, in a piece headlined, "Dark Germany, Bright Germany: Which Side Will Prevail Under the Strain of Refugees?" reports that anger is simmering among the German people:

Anger is in the air. Angela Merkel has come to Heidenau and the locals are lined up to see her. But it is anything but a friendly welcome: It is a crowd full of hate. Some call out: "Traitor to Your People!" Others yell "We Are the Pack," a reference to Deputy Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel's strong condemnation of right-wing, anti-refugee demonstrators.

It is the pride of idiots. After the chancellor disappears into the former building supplies store, where 400 refugees have found shelter, the residents of the small Saxony town begin talking about the outsiders who have become their temporary neighbors.

"Did you see the young men? Full of hormones and with nothing sensible to do. They can't help but get dumb ideas," says one tanned pensioner wearing a bike helmet. A woman nods and says she no longer allows her granddaughter to walk past the building supplies store alone.

Another article asks "How Many Refugees Can Germany Handle?"  It notes that Germany is going to receive 400,000 new refugees this year.

What's not being asked is what is in store for Germany in coming decades when waves of climate refugees cross the Mediterranean out of Africa or through Macedonia out of the Middle East? What will Germany do when it cannot take any more? How will they stop them? Who knows, will Canada be expected to shoulder Europe's burden, to take some of their overflow?

These are tough questions that are discussed in Gwynne Dyer's 2008 book, "Climate Wars, the Fight for Survival as the World Overheats." Suffice it to say this is a topic that has occupied the planning staff of the West's major military forces.

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