The Migrant Crisis, The Devil and The Deep Blue Sea

On the 16th August, BBC News ran a feature about some of the people fleeing the Middle East and are now caught in the European Migrant Crisis. 

Among those interviewed, were two young Iraqi brothers from Mosul, whose home had been destroyed by Daesh and having first been smuggled into Syria, were then taken through Turkey and across the Mediterranean, where they arrived Europe. 

The brothers described to the BBC, how ISIS had first demanded they hand over $1000 before destroying their home, which left them with no option but to escape from Iraq. 

Britain's medical charity, Doctors of the World UK recently reported, how one of their medical teams in Calais discovered a group of Syrian children huddled under old tarpaulin, and how upon examination by medics, discovered them to be riddled with Scabies. 

These are just two examples from what is being called the Migrant Crisis, where those fleeing from Iraq and Syria are being accused of coming over to Europe in search of a "better life". 

When you examine just some of the costs being incurred to enter the EU, through being crammed into boats which often results in tragedy, the outside world has been oblivious to the human traffickers making an estimated £129,000 per month, from those whose countries have become too unsafe to remain. 

While aboard those boats, people are isolated, abused, lacking in food and water, while the rules of water safety, for those who have paid thousands to escape war and persecution, are literally thrown overboard, and people are left to the mercy of the elements and those providing this unsafe mode of transport. 

What people are seeking, is not a "better life", despite what some in the media may claim but what they are needing is security. 

No one gives up their home, community, or risks their own lives or the lives of their family, for a "better life" on the Welfare State or the refugee voucher system in Britain. 

As people are fully aware of the situation in both Iraq and Syria, and if people carefully examined the financial resources needed to cross the Mediterranean, they would see the "poor" of those countries, are the ones remaining in those countries, while the wealthy, middle and often professional classes, are the ones using this as a means of escape. 

It was once stated, that when you're torn between the devil and the deep blue sea, the deep blue sea is often inviting. How true that is now.

Bill Hunter: The Life of a Revolutionary

I was around sixteen years old when I first met British Trotskyist Bill Hunter, who recently died at the age of 95. Few words are adequate to describe such a phenomenal personality, who for all his life was committed to the cause for Marxism and in whose life time, witnessed major global events, from the second world war, to the fall of the Soviet Union. 

When I first met Bill in the 1990’s, the United Kingdom was in a state of political euphoria, Communism had failed, history was at an end and society was only made up of individuals. Germany was still coming to terms with its reunification, Poland as an independent state was still in transition and Russia was being laughed at for the behaviour of Boris Yeltsin. 

The main debates in political circles, included the ongoing Israel and Palestine conflict along with growing concern for the impact, UN imposed sanctions were having upon the Iraqi population after the first Gulf War. 

Meanwhile Cuba was also isolated and going through its own crisis, as a result of the fall of the Soviet Union and many even questioned the ability of the Communist Party to retain power, while others wondered if the Soviet demise would weaken the Chinese ability to keep China together. 

When I first met Bill in his Liverpool apartment, after the initial formalities were speedily set aside, we launched into a long political debate, where all the above topics were vibrantly debated, along with Bill giving a detailed historical account of the Liverpool docks, the Militant Tendency and the Worker’s Revolutionary Party, of which Bill had been a founding and leading member of, until its own demise in the middle of the 1980’s.