The tragedy of the "boat people" in the Mediterranean is now in the news more than ever.
130 migrants were presumed dead after two boats capsized on 2 October.
This date is so close to the anniversary of the first tragedy of that kind. Just a year before,
On October 3, 2013, the 368 [in fact, 366] bodies laid out on the wharf at Lampedusa marked a watershed in the history of immigration — in the Mediterranean and perhaps even the world.The latest events have led to a rethinking of immigration policies. First by Italy:
Italian Interior Minister Angelino Alfano called for the Mare Nostrum surveillance-and-rescue operation to shut down in favor of ''European action able to show that Europe takes charge of its own border'', during a visit to Tunis on Friday, the first anniversary of the Lampedusa shipwreck in which 366 immigrants died.The debate was then extended to Europe.
The UK government is being chastised by the Left - and not only - for its refusal to support migrant rescues in the Mediterranean:
Foreign office minister says that providing comprehensive rescue cover in the Mediterranean is encouraging more migrants to make the dangerous journey and risk their lives.Even The Telegraph joins the condemnation, with this ridiculous headline:
Drown an immigrant to save an immigrant: why is the Government borrowing policy from the BNP?And yet, generosity is like everything else: you can have too much of a good thing.
This is where the death spiral into a political bidding war on immigration leads us.
This furore reminds me of another case, in which it was Italy that received international scorn for doing the right thing.
After the Ebola outbreak, it's useful to revisist that episode from last December, when Italy was severely criticised in the most absurd way just for trying to prevent contagion and an epidemic by spraying with a disinfectant the guests of a reception centre on the island of Lampedusa, the destination of thousands upon thousands of illegal immigrants from Africa.
This is how the BBC reported the story, to which the above video refers:
Footage filmed secretly on a mobile phone appears to show detainees being forced to strip naked in mixed company while a worker hoses them down.The illegal immigrants were disinfected by means of a hose spraying a substance protecting them from scabies.
The man who took the video - an unnamed Syrian refugee - says the migrants are being treated like "animals".
The camp houses people from Africa and the Middle East who make the dangerous crossing to Italy by boat...
The images, which were broadcast on state television, show migrants queuing up in a crowded, open-air courtyard.
One after another, in cold, winter conditions, they have to strip completely naked.
The man who filmed the scene says this is apparently an effort to combat the skin condition, scabies, and that both men and women have to go through it every few days.
This, nothing more than a mass shower, prompted a national inquiry, with Italian politicians and media condemning such a treatment that made the centre look like a "concentration camp".
How can a country which had received more than 40,000 illegals in just a few months wash them one by one? As an Italian blogger put it:
If you import Africa, your country will look more and more like Africa.The press melodramatically and hyperbolically described the shower as "dehumanising" as well as freezing, but people's comments to those articles were overwhelmingly of a different opinion. Just a sample:
Don't be ridiculous. Being freezing cold in Lampedusa, that's big news! They have scabies and who knows what else. Disinfecting them is the least. First of all, no-one has invited them; second, if they want to keep scabies, lice etc. they can stay in their own countries...Frontex, the European Union Agency for border management, has released data according to which, in the first four months of 2014, landings of immigrants in Italy have increased by 823% compared to the same period last year. And from early May things have got even worse.
15 degrees is not a freezing temperature, they can always go back and keep their scabies and whatever else they have. In case you didn't know, there have been 7 cases of scabies in an elementary school in Parma. Who knows how it got there, and what other filth they are bringing here...
If 15 degrees is cold for them, how can the illegals migrate to Sweden or Germany, as they say they will, and survive?...
Maybe the shower rooms have been destroyed like everything else [a reference to previous episodes of rioting and vandalism by illegals attacking the reception centre]...
Shame on you Lefties, it's all your fault, you wanted the immigrants to appear humanitarian; and now you're paying the consequences!...
If they had remained in their own countries they would still have scabies......
The real shocking images are not these, they are those of the victims of the increasing number of crimes committed by illegals.
Not only the immigrant reception system is collapsing under the weight of these figures. Another consequence of this invasion is the impossibility to control who is coming, with the probability of health emergencies increasing all the time.
The migrants are from countries with serious health problems and travel in poor hygienic conditions, therefore can be carriers of infectious diseases.
Diseases like polio and tuberculosis, disappeared from our countries, are coming back to Europe, carried by immigrants. The city of Syracuse, in Sicily, has a tuberculosis incidence not unlike that of a Third World city, because of the many illegal landings.
There have already been cases of immigrants with scabies amidst the general Italian population.
Scabies is a serious and extremely contagious disease, and can only be eliminated by the method used in Lampedusa. It is in the interest of both Italians - in case anybody still cares about them - and illegals that the latter are sprayed with disinfectant, as many of them are contracting the illness in the asylum centre itself from other guests.