The Washington Post recently published an insidious analysis comparing Trump’s caravan rhetoric to right-wing populists “making up stories” and “stoking fear” during the European refugee crisis.
The article began by disparaging what the author believes to be unsubstantiated claims that the approaching caravan from Central America is an “invasion” and “terrorism risk,” as President Trump has described. According to the author, there’s “no better way for populists to win an election than by announcing a national emergency that plays into voters’ fears.”
It’s quite startling that a journalist would completely discard the horrific events that culminated during the extended, and at times fatal, refugee crisis across Europe. In 2015 and 2016, there were more than 2.3 million illegal crossings recorded across the European Union, with Germany absorbing more than 1 million foreign citizens in 2015 alone.
While the encroaching caravan south of our border may seem miniscule in comparison, the mass exodus of people from Northern Africa and the Middle East to Europe did not transpire overnight either. The first signs of the preceding European crisis began in January 2015, after a ship abandoned by smugglers was rescued off the coast of Italy with only 360 Syrians on board.
In the following months, ships carrying anywhere between a few hundred to a thousand people were intercepted all along Mediterranean coastlines. Figures from the United Nations Refugee Agency showed that 63,000 foreign citizens arrived in Greece and 62,000 in Italy during just the first half of 2015. (Read more from “How the Central American Caravan Could Lead to a U.S. Refugee Crisis Like Europe’s” HERE)