The Syrian refugee crisis has been the hot button issue of most of the world in the past few weeks. From 3-year-old Aylan’s body being washed ashore off the coast of Turkey to the recent statement by John Kerry stating that Russia may get involved, the refugees fleeing the war torn country of Syria are sadly pawns in a global game of neo-colonial chess.
The Middle East has been one of the most turmoil-ridden regions of the world for many years. This is no coincidence. From the Cold War to Operation Desert Storm to the war on the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), it seems that the region cannot catch a break from political instability. In recent years, thanks in part to the Arab Spring, which started in Tunisia in 2011, the people of the Middle East have expressed a genuine desire to establish a democratic government where they live, with fair elections, civil liberties, and economic stability. This is easier said than done for a multitude of reasons. Governments cannot be forced to be free democracies overnight, no matter how much the United States tries to do that in countries such as Afghanistan and Iraq. This implementation of “democracy” cannot come from a country such as the U.S. It has to be truly organic. Why? It is because the U.S. will place another person in charge to rule who becomes corrupt, and they will have to “re-invade” in order to “protect the people.”
This is a toxic cycle. What is even scarier is that the U.S. does this on purpose. By keeping the people of the Middle East in a constant state of instability and oppression, they get to take advantage and “invade” whenever they choose. This gives the people a false sense of hope, which keeps them clinging on even tighter to this false prophet. The Middle East is rich with resources, including but not limited to crude oil and natural gas.
The U.S. has had control over the oil supplies in the Middle East for over a hundred years. When control over said oil was threatened to be jeopardized during the Cold War, the U.S. deployed troops, arming people in the Middle East to contain communist to the confines of the USSR, preventing further expansion of a country that was, at the time, growing at an alarming rate. The U.S. armed troops in the countries bordering the USSR including Afghanistan, where one person who lives in infamy resides, Osama Bin Laden. This is not to say that the U.S. created 9/11, but they did indirectly contribute to it through their attempts at keeping other threats to their superpower status at bay.
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This all comes together in context to the current refugee crisis. It is another way in which neo-colonialism is still alive and well in the Middle East. By keeping people oppressed in war-stricken countries, the U.S. stays the puppet master. The people have no attempted to flee the region to find safety, and in the process, they end up dying or being in an even worse situation as many countries are now not giving asylum to the Syrian refugees. One of the countries so far to come out and openly welcome refugees has been Great Britain. There are emerging stories every day about more refugees arriving in Europe, dying in the process, or being granted asylum. One story that will not be told is the truth that this “crisis” has been manufactured as a means to keep these developing countries in their socio-economic place, relying on hegemonies such as the U.S. for stability.