Calais

Much can be said about the current ‘immigration crisis’ in Calais. Indeed, much still is being said. (From 25 July, when I first had a notion about writing a post about this topic, I accumulated 19 bookmarks to pages I thought I might use, including an update about the Hungarian fence. I’ll relish the moment they’re removed and my ‘blogging hints’ bookmark folder suddenly down to a quarter of its current size.)

Don’t worry. I’m too lazy for a lengthy description of something most of us have for some time followed on a daily basis anyway. Too lazy to link to every single twist of the story, like the thousands attacking the Channel Tunnel at the height of the affair, some of them dying, the proposed legal measures done to show something is being done (for they are by and large toothless), the bizarre comparisons to the Berlin Wall, the squabbles about terminology . . . I’m likewise too lazy to dissect, point after point, a strange recent article by Patrick Kingsley, the import of which seems to be “there are much worse immigration crises than the one in Calais, so we should sit down and do nothing, or better still, give those poor refugees a hearty welcome”.

Because when we’re talking Calais (not the other places, to which Mr Kingsley tries to divert attention), not much needs to be said. Only the basic aspect, which sadly isn’t mentioned often enough, not even by the government: we are not talking here about people fleeing from danger. We are talking about people who are in one safe country trying to get – illegaly – into another. An attempt at stealing through the Tunnel from France to England is no more a ‘humanitarian’ issue for being perpetrated by somebody from Africa or the Middle East than if it were done by an EU citizen.

 

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