Constant Limbo

I thought the first article “Camp in the City” was a very interesting read after just barely scratching the surface of the role Angela Merkel has played in the refugee crisis during research for my critique. I will never forget a conversation this past summer in London with a very talkative uber driver who wanted to explain all about how Angela Merkel may have opened her boarders in order to somehow try and make amends for the damaged reputation Germany still suffers after Hitler’s role in WWII, but she was now letting them run rampant and was, as he so eloquently put it, just completely losing control. This conversation of course was the first thing that came to mind when the “Camp in the City” article began to juxtapose the fact that thousands of refugees now seek shelter in the abandoned airport that was built from forced Nazi laborers, and while back then in that uber I was honestly only half – listening, naïvely doubting that he actually knew anything that was going on besides what the media had portrayed, but after reading this article he was pretty spot on. The lack of any stable filing system that left the refugees “unnumbered and unknown” and the inhumane violence brought upon them as well, has brought the city of Berlin right back to a similar chaos and disorder they where home to during WWII. The article ended in a perfect sentence summing up the issue as a whole, saying that Germany opened their borders as a response to “historical trauma rather than reason” which leads me to believe that their lack of preparedness for just how many refugees were about to enter, is almost causing just as much harm as offering them a home does good.

In the article “Where Ethics and Politics Meet” I was extremely saddened but at this point, not at all surprised by the lengths people were taking to meet the “illness clause” that France had in place, even becoming HIV+. As the article went on to explain more about the clause, it reminded me of so many of the stories we have heard so far in class where people were trying so hard to cross, wherever they may be and wherever they may be trying to enter, without realizing that their suffering wouldn’t end once they had reached the other side. Just like that, the illness clause provided a very false sense of security in that the formal papers upon proving their illness would allow them to rent apartments, open bank accounts, and generally move about the city without constant fear of deportation but they were not allowed to get a job due to their “serious illnesses” as it is worded in the clause, so they didn’t have any “substantive means” to do any of the things that the papers allowed them to do. It completely “disqualified [them] from taking any… role in French society,” placing those seeking refugee and now very ill, in yet another of a state of total limbo.