I am very conflicted about this issue.
On the one hand, I feel Europeans seeded this mess a long time ago and they should accept the refugees. On the other hand, I believe that people have the leaders they allow to rule. Just about half the population of Syria left the country. If that same half had marched on the capital, yes, it would have been bloody, but the regime would not be standing.
In a very simplistic way to be sure, most of the unrest in the world today is either directly or indirectly the result of early Europeans to the ‘new world’. So, it is now Europe’s turn to deal with the mess they seeded many years ago. Looking at it through that lens, Europeans migrated from Europe in large numbers to the new world for exactly the same reason as the refugees of today. Religious and political unrest in Europe drove people to look for peace else where. The Puritans didn’t come to America because life was great in England. Neither did the Irish or the Italians, Germans, and on and on. Yet, they came when their home land was a mess looking for a better life.
Europeans didn’t only flee to the new world for sanctuary, they also saw the new world as a gold mine. Carving up the land amongst themselves regardless of tribal or ethnic boundaries. This led to a whole host of problems that are still with us today. The refugees of today are from places where Europeans had there hands and made a mark. Today, those refugees are looking for the same thing the Europeans were looking for when they left Europe; freedom, peace of mind, and safety.
That is why is really striking to me, to hear Europeans or American talk disparagingly about people wanting to come to their country today. No one asked the Native American Indians or the Amerindians if they could enter. Yet they did, and did so bearing arms. Nothing like what is going on today.
I feel for people living in difficult situations and who just want a better life for their love ones. But I also feel that people have a responsibility to make their home a better place to live. Assad doesn’t lead Syria alone. There are many who support him. That country has the leader they have because that is the leader who allow to govern.
Some might say, well he is violent and he crushes the opposition. That is true, but for all those who are fleeing the country, about half the population by now. That is more than enough to have crushed Assad and his supported. Instead of fleeing, they should stay, fight, and die to make their home a better place. Fleeing only makes it possible for Assad to say in power because there are less people to oppose him. So while they leave for a better life for themselves, they leave their countrymen to suffer.
Every Syrian that leaves and seek asylum elsewhere, is abandoning their country and handing success to the regime. That is why I believe that if people don’t like what is going on in their country, they should fight to change it. Be willing to fall on your metaphorical sword in the battle to have the leadership you want. And that would mean a civil war in many instances and fighting with your brother. But people just can’t run away from every bad situation to where the going is good and leave issues unresolved.