Monica Showalter, American Thinker, June 22, 2017
Had enough refugee crises? Apparently not. A new one is coming, and it may be big, rivaling the human waves that have engulfed Europe, except that it’s not from ISIS. Venezuela is melting down into a huge refugee flight, which is the natural endgame of socialism. And it will reach our shores.
According to the Associated Press:
While Venezuela plunges further into political and economic ruin, the flight of its citizens is accelerating, reaching levels unseen in its history. Experts believe nearly one-tenth of its population of around 31 million now lives outside the country.
Who are they? It’s all of them now:
For better-off professionals the preferred destination is Spain or the U.S., where Venezuelans are overstaying their visas in droves and now lead asylum requests for the first time – 18,155 last year alone. But for many poor people fleeing Venezuela’s triple-digit inflation, hours-long food lines and medical shortages, Colombia is the journey’s end. The neighboring Andean nation has received more Venezuelans than any other nation. Estimates indicate more than 1 million have arrived in the last two decades, reversing the previous trend of Colombians fleeing war heading to Venezuela.
Now that the hunger is accomplished, the crime is hitting global records, a civil war is brewing, the rule of law lies in ruins, and the future is absolutely worse ahead. It’s pretty clear that Venezuela is going to break down and scatter like a rotted corpse.
It’s an immensely sad story – so sad that I find it difficult to write about, knowing Venezuela and Venezuelans pretty well. Venezuelans are so normal; they are so like us; they function so well in normal societies. There is so much to like about them – their gaiety, their energy, their bare-bones U.S.-style straightforwardness. When Venezuelans come to the U.S., they often blend into the U.S. without a trace. And their country is so beautiful. These are not people who should end up as refugees.
But the horror is coming.
The Associated Press reports that the United Nations has sent in swoop teams to prepare for the inevitable contingencies of this coming humanitarian crisis. They’re setting up posts in Brazil, Colombia, and Trinidad and Tobago, knowing that Venezuelans fleeing for their lives will head through those portals.
Meanwhile, President Trump met hastily with President Pablo Pedro Kaczynski of Peru a few weeks ago. The White House readout said the topic was Venezuela.
Why is this happening?
Quite simply, toxic socialism has collided with reality, as it always must, and its communist practitioners have run out of other people’s money. But it’s less a matter of that than that they have turned their country over to Cuban overlords who have taught them how to use food as a weapon. Venezuela can have food any time it likes, just as all the other South American countries do – its ruling socialists just refuse to allow any change of course that might require market freedom. It is telling that they won’t let aid in.
And they are denying a crisis even as it encircles them.
When the Venezuelan boat people wash up, what can be said as to why this happened?
One, that socialism is at the root of this humanitarian nightmare, and the world has yet to see a reckoning of socialism, its effects, its withering away of the state and the scattering of its people to the winds. Nowhere in the world is there a serious enough education on the causes of this inhuman system that has created so much human misery every time it is tried. The U.S., whose education system is strangled by political correctness and revisionist history, is no exception, and its young people have no idea about the horrors of socialism, whose latest victim in Venezuela.
Two, the nations that get the refugees and their bills are going to be the ones who deserve them. The U.S. has pursued a “let it collapse on its own” foreign policy that predates the last eight years of President Obama. State Department officials have told me that themselves. Instead of using muscle and the soapbox and shepherding the reluctant neighbors, it’s largely thrown up its hands on the horror in the interest of letting what happens happen. Colombia deserves the crisis about as much, too – it rarely ever confronted the Chavista thug regime even when it opened its borders to FARC terrorists, and during the administration of President Juan Manuel Santos, it actively coddled the socialist thugs. Now it’s about to reap the whirlwind.
Other players, who won’t take any consequences, include the Organization of American States, which resolutely refused to condemn this refugee-producing regime. Andres Oppenheimer has a fairly good column on their latest cowardice, hamstrung by a bunch of bribed Caribbean nations, and the pitiful organization that has become.
The other player is the Catholic Church, whose local branches have spoken out for years about the horrors of socialism but whose Vatican has stayed completely silent. This is a huge refugee crisis, something they have spoken out on elsewhere. Do they exempt Catholic Venezuelans from any democracy, migrant help, or preferential option for the poor? Or do they have too many Liberation Theology practitioners in their ranks whom they can’t afford to offend? In either case, by their silence and complicity, they own this, too.
How strange it is to see a once normal country descend into a massive humanitarian crisis. This is the work of socialism, and by its refugees it should be known, not by its false promises.