The refugee crisis in Europe escalates by the day to an unprecedented scale shaking the very foundations of the European Union. Just a week away from the crucial summit in Brussels, scheduled for the 7th of March 2016, the European Union is in disarray, lost in a fearful tunnel without an exit strategy. Last week a group of European leaders excelled in unilateralism, double talk, accusations and recriminations: a Babylonian European affair. The Austrian President called Greece a tourist office that issues tickets to illegal immigrants/refugees to settle in other EU countries. Greece recalled its ambassador from Vienna for consultations in Athens, refusing to play host to the Austrian FM who earlier convened a Western Balkan leaders meeting in Vienna excluding Greece. Consequently, Athens threatens to block any decisions in the forthcoming summit, unless 450 million euros are handed to cover costs associated with the immediate needs of the huge influx, along with a guaranteed plan to relocate the refugees in an equitable way.
Indeed, the Italian Minister of Interior encapsulated the unfortunate, if not desperate, situation in which Greece unwillingly finds itself. Angelino Alfano, in very eloquent terms, resembled the EU to a building where the residents quarrel non-stop and everybody blames the poor janitor, the powerless gate keeper to the EU, that is to say, Greece. How true!
On the other hand, Viktor Orban, the Hungarian Prime Minister shouts out: ‘why should I subject my country to the burden of unruly refugees when I did not have a hand in all this’?
But is it so? Are the European leaders absolutely clear of any responsibility of the horrors taking place in the Middle East North Africa region today? It is high time, the Europeans, reflected on the root causes of the current MENA region crisis. The root causes are no other than the unilateral policies of NATO aimed at regime change in an entire raft of countries of the region in order to serve US interests. We are now experiencing the long term consequences of non-stop US interventions in Afghanistan, in Iraq, in Libya, and now in Syria to which the EU-NATO either unwisely subscribed or was unwillingly dragged into. Thirteen years into the US-led ‘Coalition of the willing’ intervention in Iraq, the country is still shattered by bomb blasts that kill hundreds week in, week out. Five years since the NATO bombing campaign that unseated and assassinated Muammar Qaddafi: Libya is in deep tribal civil war, ungovernable and a hot bed of jihadists.
What is new with US allies in the region? The Saudis, who have an abominable human rights record, yet have been for decades the US military-industrial complex best client building up a formidable war machine, have been for a couple of months now stitching up, a new Arab NATO-style alliance, purportedly to ‘fight terrorist organizations’. For once, Riyadh has been aiding and abetting extremist Sunni organizations for five years in Syria in effort to topple largely secular Assad and radicalize the Sunni population of the country. In this alliance, the House of Saud, relies on the support of Turkey, the arch state terrorist, of the region, who has been murdering its own Kurdish population on and off for over thirty years, with a revived vengeance as of late. Ankara is seeking to neutralize the YPG, the Syrian Kurds civil protection units that have achieved success in pushing away Islamic State terrorists with the help of Russian airstrikes on ISIS targets.
In conclusion, what the MENA region needs to pacify is not another NATO-style unilateralist organization but consolidation of the Syrian political process after the agreed ceasefire. For obvious reasons ISIS, being an extremist terrorist organization is excluded. The ISIS threat should be eradicated. Russia, invited by the Syrian government, seems to be the only power that achieves, through its air campaign, real results in that respect. Ironically, the EU blindly follows the US, in imposing sanctions on Russia, failing to see where the threat lies and who its real ally is in securing a prosperous European future.