The World’s Deadliest Border Is Around Europe
America seems like the most dangerous border in the world, because they advertise. The white supremacists in charge want the world to know that they kidnap children. But the Rio Grande isn’t the most dangerous border in the world. Not by a long shot.
The Mediterranean is the deadliest border in the world, by design. The European Union intentionally drowns tens of thousands of migrants off its coasts, quietly, where they cannot be heard.
The amount of deaths in the Mediterranean dwarfs any other region. This is not due to unscrupulous smugglers or any other such nonsense. This is policy — directed by law in 2002¹ — wherein borders are militarized and human decency made illegal.
The EU’s policy is to push men, women and children to drown at sea. They go beyond not helping these poor, desparate human beings — they actively create conditions wherein they drown. So the problem of their lives will just disappear, sink to the bottom where they won’t have to deal with it.
The Mediterranean is not the stage for a series of accidents and disasters, it is a crimes scene. From 2004–2015 the EU killed 23,700 human beings². The number is 36,570 to date. The equivalent of ninety 747s crashing into the water, but no one cares because the people are darker and poor. Occasionally a baby’s still body will wash up on shore, but besides that, the European conscience is not pricked.
Both American and European policies are moral abominations, as are all borders in general. But in this calvacade of the historically damned, Europe stands out as the worst. Europe is the most deadly border in the world. It’s shocking because they were the original refugees.
Literally. The word refugee was legally defined in 1951. It meant people who had to flee “as a result of events occurring before 1 January 1951”, ie, World War II. Europeans were once desperate and needed to move, but they have forgotten where they came from. Politically, collectively, they have lost their humanity. Their decency. Their claim to any ethical civilization worth a damn.
The EU legislated this monstrosity in 2002:
This directive criminalizes helping other humans in need. It is a Bad Samaritan law. This directive has been used in France, Italy, Hungary, Spain and more to prosecute people that rescue other humans from drowning, who offer them shelter, or even offer them a cup of tea³. This continent of refugees has criminalized kindness and they should be ashamed of themselves.
This is a moral abomination and a stain on Europe’s character and history.
In the face of the worst war displacement since World War II (14 million in 2014) and the largest number of fleeing humans in history (59.5 million), Europeans have responded with a collective ‘let them inhale water and die’. It make me shiver with rage.
One of the people fighting this, besides of course the brave and noble migrants, is Pia Klemp, who was arrested for saving humans adrift at sea. She rightly cast aside the role of white savior and wrote this, in rejecting an award:
I’m not a humanitarian. I am not there to ‘aid’. I stand with you in solidarity. We do not need medals. We do not need authorities deciding about who is a ‘hero’ and who is ‘illegal’. In fact they are in no position to make this call, because we are all equal.
What we need are freedom and rights. It is time we call out hypocrite honorings and fill the void with social justice. It is time we cast all medals into spearheads of revolution!
Documents and housing for all!
Freedom of movement and residence! (Pia Klemp, Facebook, 20 August 2019)
These are the humans who will be written into history as good, though they are a minority. Just as people who saved Jews and slaves and fought colonialism are remembered now. It won’t be the mass of European officials and voters who have legislated and executed the greatest ongoing maritime disaster in human history.
This wholesale murder of desperate people at sea, this cruel persecution of the people decent enough to help, this is the greatest stain on the European character since World War II. They should be ashamed of themselves, we should make them ashamed, and this policy must be changed. The whole global system of borders must be torn down, and people everywhere must be free to move.
Solidarity. We all deserve to make it to solid land.
⁰ This entire piece is based on — Jones, Reece; Violent Borders (2016/17).
¹ COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 2002/90/EC of 28 November 2002, defining the facilitation of unauthorised entry, transit and residence
² Brian and Lackzo, Fatal Journeys, 2014, referenced via Reece Jones, Violent Borders, 2017.
³ Caritas — The “criminalisation” of solidarity towards migrants