The problems facing the western nations regarding the refugee crisis is a major problem, but one that can be addressed using a little common sense. I might appear to be naïve, but this is my opinion.
First off, find a solution to the revolution in Syria. Get rid of Assad and find a way to bring together the warring religious parties that are tearing the country apart. Propose a coalition government representing the two opposing religious factions, but if necessary, implement a decree backed by the UN if there is no effort for the religious war to be settled.
There would be no need for refugee migration if there were peace in the country. This does not mean boots on the ground, but a threat of further sanctions which would include prohibiting the production and sales of oil. That would create more of a hardship on the population which would in turn put greater pressure on the governing body to bring about peace.
Assure Russia that their friendship with Syria will not be threatened in any way and that their military bases in Syria will be honoured as long as they do not pose a threat to the rest of the world. Russia has to be a part of the solution including sanctions regarding Syrian oil and they should back any decision offered by the UN. The Russians are not stupid and must realize that the terrorists that are operating around the world pose just as much of a threat to Russia as any other country that is considered non-believers by the Muslim extremists.
The free world should accept the refugee’s on a temporary basis but only until it is safe for their return. Those that wish to remain in their adoptive countries should follow the legal formalities and apply for permanent residence.
As for Canada, the Canadian government must adhere to the fact that “charity begins at home” and the welfare of Canadians must come first.
There are many Canadians living in poverty that are questioning the fact that the refugees will receive much greater health and welfare benefits than those citizens that find themselves in dire straits because of the economic conditions that have left them unemployed or trying to exist on minimal wages. It will be hard for the unemployed and poor to welcome foreign citizens that will be better treated than the legal Canadian citizens who are finding it hard to make ends meet.
By all means help the refugees, but remember that there are many in need right here in our own community that have paid their dues with taxes over the years and need some temporary help to get over this economic downturn.
Donald E Thorsteinson