Gangs, populism, and conspiracy theory overshadow West’s role in refugee crisis

Richard Sudan
Richard Sudan is a London-based writer, political activist, and performance poet. His writing has been published in many prominent publications, including the Independent, the Guardian, Huffington Post and Washington Spectator. He has been a guest speaker at events for different organizations ranging from the University of East London to the People's Assembly covering various topics. His opinion is that the mainstream media has a duty to challenge power, rather than to serve power. Richard has taught writing poetry for performance at Brunel University.
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In the wake of the ongoing refugee crisis, Europe continues to lurch to the right, both in the visible form of neo-Nazi gangs terrorizing the streets, and also with politicians playing to right wing populism.

From Stockholm to Dover, gangs have been terrorizing refugees or anyone they perceive to look like one, while also attacking anti-fascist protestors.

These gangs by their own admission are reacting to what they perceive to be their own government’s failure in responding to the crisis.  The fact their governments caused the crisis is a fact which is apparently lost on them.

In reality, all these gangs are achieving is to simply play into the hands of the very same governments who happily pipe up about the problems associated with the refugee crisis, while at the same time continue to cause it, with the bombs they drop, and the terror groups and regimes they prop up.

Nobody in their right mind wants to see any of the crimes associated with the refugee crisis take place, whether we are taking about wars which cause people to leave their homes, or the problems associated with Europe’s inability to deal with the crisis.

States in Europe have laws in place to deal with murder, rape, assault, and any other crimes which take place.  All of us want to see an end to misogyny and murder wherever it manifests, whether it is committed by groups or individuals, or committed by states on an industrial scale.

However, in the current climate, any crime committed by anyone perceived to be a refugee, is immediately brandished in the headlines as proof that all refugees are bad.  The same yardstick or measure is not applied to other ethnicities or faiths.  If it were, it would probably offer some uncomfortable truths, or reveal the many holes in such pseudo-scientific thinking.

The phenomena of street gangs and politicians playing to the right, is a result of Europe and the West reacting to the crisis, rather than taking an honest look at its causes.

The ‘way of life’ many of these groups (and politicians) are talking about ‘protecting’, is less to with any Christian values, and is in reality, grounded in propping up the failed economic model of neo-colonial capitalism, which itself is predicated on the continuation of illegal wars and subversion of the Middle East and Africa.

In the same way this model has fooled many of the working classes in Britain, themselves victim of this model, into voting for a political party of the ruling class offering them more of the same economic ‘safety’ ultimately causing their misery under ‘austerity’, this thinking has also caused a dangerous form of reactionary nationalism in Europe to resurface.

Rather than look at the root cause of the crisis, imperialism, and understand the relationship between war and Western economies, the masses have been duped into believing that the refugee crisis starts and ends with the actual refugees themselves, despite the obvious reasons as to why they have arrived in Europe.

This thinking is completely westernized and Eurocentric, and provides a convenient scapegoat for the architects of war: Rather than lay the blame for the crisis at the hands of governments and the neo-colonial institutions which support their interests, the refugees are blamed.  Women, children, it makes no difference as newspaper headlines last week show.

Or worse still, as we are seeing, more and more people are buying into the idea that a shadowy cabal is behind the crisis, or George Soros and Rothschild Zionists, all intent of course, on destroying Europe’s way of life by causing a mass exodus from Africa and the Middle East, to Europe’s green pastures.

Apart from being untrue, this thinking also reeks of anti-Semitism, and the sort of racism which should remain dead and buried and which needs no revival.  It also is very damaging to the left, because it delegitimizes actual progressive thought.  The more this thinking occupies the centre ground helped by the media, the further away from a solution we drift.

This simplistic scapegoating also diverts away from the fact that it is developed Western economies and the policy which underpins and drives them, which has led to this crisis.

There is no conspiracy.  It’s more like business as usual.  The refugee crisis is a direct result of both colonialism and in the modern era, neo-colonialism, the more sophisticated incarnation of modern capitalism, implementing its own barbarism under the perverse justification of ‘humanitarian’ intervention.

In other words, as Europe’s thinking goes, “It’s not enough that we used to occupy and colonize you, you clearly remain incapable of governing yourselves, and so therefore, it is our job to come and do it for you, and to democratize you in the form of bombs and McDonalds.  When you come to our shores fleeing our bombs, we will do anything and everything to avoid blaming those who should be blamed including politicians, the wars they advocate, and the consumerism we worship.”

It is this psychology, or psychological deficiency depending on your view, which underpins the origin of the refugee crisis, and also which now, rather than seeking to diagnose it, will do anything to explain away what is happening-except of course look at the actual cause.  

No shadowy cabal or conspiracy theory is needed to explain what is happening here.  People are fleeing their homelands because there is a very real conspiracy by Western governments and its proxies to destabilize and destroy them.

The relationships between Africa, China, and the Middle East are still developing. Russia and China at least, while far from having a perfect relationship with Africa, are at least offering a functional one, and more importantly are perfectly distinguishable one from the West’s imperial relationship with Africa and the Middle East.

The West’s strategy in Africa the Middle East, in the Wake of the ‘Arab Sting’, is simply one of ‘divide and ruin’, meaning that “if we (Western governments) can’t control your resources, then no one can.”  The West would rather destroy whole countries, and turn them into failed states and torch their resources, than allow states to have a functional relationship with each other with indigenous populations benefiting from the wealth. This is how the problem manifests internationally.

At home, Europe and the West would rather blame a shadowy cabal, or delude themselves that ‘the others’ Arabs, Muslims or Africans are the problem rather than their own governments.

This is the problem Europe is failing to recognize, which is giving the US also complicit in wars of aggression, a ‘free pass’.

Until we start to diagnose the problem, rather than engage in right-wing populism and neo-liberal denialism, ugly scenes like those we have seen in Britain, France, and Germany will continue.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.