Different War, Different Status

Nelson, Soraya Sarhaddi. (2015, December 25) Struggling To Absorb Asylum-Seekers, Germany Steps Up Deportations. NPR News. Retrieved from http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2015/12/25/461025450/struggling-to-absorb-asylum-seekers-germany-steps-up-deportations

This article brings to light the discrepancy  between the German government’s words and what they’re actually doing.  Germany’s Chancellor Merkel, previously stated that they would do everything within their power to help those running from war torn countries.  Earlier this month however, Merkel held a conference with her Afghan counterpart where she announced that although they are helping out refugees, they would not be accept all Afghan’s as refugees and that they would have to deport them. “Economic reasons don’t qualify for Asylum,” Merkel. The probable reasoning behind this is that they are unable to handle the current influx coming in from a multitude of conflicts.  Seeing as they are already providing manpower in Afghanistan it would seem counter productive to double their efforts by helping them to move out of Afghanistan.  Instead they seem to say that Afghanistan need these individuals given that they are usually the young and educated.  But some Afghans argue that they have lost everything in their country and their is nothing to go back to.

I chose this source because of its contradicting title.  Germany is a well known humanitarian and major economic power in the EU, so I was not surprised at all that they were absorbing asylum seekers.  But the second bit, the “stepping up to deportations” made it interesting.  Why would they send Syrian refugees back to a, in all intents and purposes, a failed state?  A place, that if returned to, would force them to choose a side.  A side in which they may have no believe in but have to abide by because that is where they are geographically positioned.  Once I read the article their policy made sense.  As I understood it, they cannot afford to take all these refugees so they have to be more selective on who they give the refugee status to.  So they decide to kick out the Afghans.  It’s the politically astute move here.  Syria is in the forefront of the media and their refugees, so they can keep catering to them and keep up their world image.  And in case the German people start complaining or grumbling, they can say look we are not taking Afghans in.  Then Germany can point out that the reason is that Afghanistan needs its people plus their ground troops are doing such a great job and the money spent in Afghanistan was not a waste.  In this article the Afghans are noted as asylum seekers.  It’s interesting how a government entity can refute your reality and deem you as an economic migrant.  As Ruz (2015) quoted in her article that the 1951 Refugee Convention says a refugee “is any person who, owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his/her nationality and is unable, or owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself/herself of the protection of that country”.  It’s a bad situation, and its demoralizing that one of the biggest European powers is deporting them when in their own eyes they are leaving Afghanistan because they fear for their lives.  Anyways, Germany needs to stop this bleeding heart syndrome they have going.  In my short lived experience in Germany, non-western migrants did not seem welcomed or the migrants self excluded themselves.  But their is a definite divide Germany must address if they will effectively integrate refugees into their country.

My reaction to the whole ordeal was that it makes sense to kick out Afghans.  To perform triage on refugees is a common thing to do and now their just taking it a step forward and actually deporting them.  Towards the end of the article it mentions something along the lines that deportation falls to the responsibility of the states and not the federal government.  I would like to know how exactly it falls on them.  Are the states responsible for tracking refugees withing their borders and then report them to a deportation authority?  Or does each state have their own customs and border patrols?  I’d like to know how the states feel about Merkel’s plans and if they are even willing to follow it.  In some cases, although the central government pressures the states, the states are able to push off their responsibility by some bureaucratic voodoo.


2 thoughts on “Different War, Different Status

  1. rosalyng2015 says:

    You bring up a couple of good points in your post. Perhaps one is the question of just what the responsibility of Germany should be, and who should it be to. Of course we all want to see the humane thing done but what about the responsible thing? Taking in Afghan asylum seekers could be causing a terrible brain drain on Afghanistan and actually defeating the effort to bring peace to the area. Those seeking to leave Afghanistan in search of opportunity in a nation that offers and values individual initiative and integrity should be the ones who are catalysts for change in their own country. I get it in a way. No one wants to die, but doesn’t anyone want to fight for what they believe in anymore? Even in Syria this could be the case. Instead of offering an easy way out with a blanket “open door policy” and enabling surrender and pockets of anarchy to fester and grow perhaps the global community should spend their money and efforts propping up independence, free-will, and equality to resist anarchy and despotism.


  2. SamU says:

    It is always a difficult to be black and white in situations as complex as these. However, in this situation I think that Germany is doing the right thing by trying to keep immigrants from places like Afghanistan. Currently they are trying to make Afghanistan a safe environment to live. If there is nobody left there then trying to make a hospitable is not only counterproductive, but it’s also futile. The foundation being set for them will crumble without anyone present to maintain and build off of it. However, when it comes down to it if I was on their situation I would be reluctant to return as well. At what point are they supposed to decide whether or not it is their responsibility to pick up the mantle in a seemingly hopeless situation such as this? I understand that some might view this as their responsibility, but shouldn’t they also be free to leave their country and move as they please?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s