Thousands of refugees are taken in by Switzerland on an annual basis, granted asylum in the country due to war-torn conditions in their home countries. But while Swiss residents may be okay with their government taking in the tired and poor, they may not be too happy about a recent report in the Basler Zeitung.
According to the Swiss newspaper, thousands of refugees head back to the African nation of Eritrea every year, despite the fact that it is supposedly too dangerous for them to live there. The paper reports that many of these refugees have been rejected for asylum status in Switzerland, but Swiss authorities are unable to deport them back to Eritrea due to the dangerous conditions on the ground.
The paper said that as many as 50 Eritreans a day are traveling from Switzerland back to their home countries for vacation. To compound matters, many of these refugees are wards of the state in their adopted land. In other words, they are using Swiss welfare dollars to return at will to a country that is, by government policy, too dangerous for them to go back to.
We’ll leave it to the Swiss to get a handle on their own refugee problem, but this is a reflection of a growing problem across the Western hemisphere. In Europe and the United States, liberal governments are being taken advantage of by countries that cannot stand on their own merits. Remittance payments, welfare checks, and direct humanitarian aid come pouring into these countries; criminals and ne’er-do-wells come pouring out.
It’s not that we don’t have sympathy for the plight of true refugees, and it’s not that we want to see the U.S. and Western Europe turn their backs on those in need. But there comes a point where kindness turns into idiocy, and we are rapidly approaching that point if we haven’t crossed it already. Terrorism is only one facet of the danger. Cultural degradation and economic instability cannot be ignored, either.
There has to be a middle ground. We can send aid to failing countries without making their problems our own. We can provide humanitarian assistance without laying out the welcome mat to every displaced wretch in Northern Africa. We can fulfill our international obligations without putting our security at risk.
The Western world is slowly but surely waking up, and it’s not a minute too soon.