I’ve just woken up to the horrible news from Paris, I’ve not seen the news from elsewhere yet but it seems that equally horrifying things have happened in other parts of the world too, and, well.. fucking hell my Facebook feed is alive with sorrow. Which is to be expected.
Unfortunately what is also to be expected is a backlash of people blaming the refugees who have fled to our shores for the attack. I’m 100% certain that we are going to see further calls to build up the walls around fortress Europe in order to prevent this happening again. I’m equally certain that the far right are going to use this as an excuse to attack refugees and minority groups and that whilst most, otherwise right thinking people, will not agree with the far right they will “understand” –as though the refugees were somehow responsible for the attacks.
What these people do not understand is that the horror from the streets of France is exactly why we need to be doing our utmost to help the people fleeing across the Mediterranean and trying to find safe harbour with us. The violence we have seen in Paris is exactly what these people are fleeing and has, by the sounds of it, been perpetrated by the same fascists, or their sympathisers, that the refugees are fleeing.
I’ve read reports of people in Paris taking strangers, many strangers, into their homes to help them escape the streets. Solidarity. Mutual Aid. Humanity. This is a perfect illustration of both what we, as people, do at times like this and what we, as people, need to do on a larger scale.
Now that we in Europe have had a taste of the horror, of the violence, that these fascists wreak then what other choice do we have, if we want to retain our humanity, other than to do all that we can to help? We need boats to get people to safety, we need accommodation for people when they get here and, if we want to help them return to their homes, we need to arm the people who are fighting the fascists on the home front.
Open the borders, arm the Kurds, and help them to rebuild afterwards.