US Opinion and Commentary

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Containing the Chaos of Migration

Posted April 13th, 2016 at 12:16 pm (UTC-5)
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It takes a lot to uproot oneself (and family), arrange travel via a trafficker, step onto a boat with a few possessions and no guarantees.They are called migrants or refugees—or both. Whichever term comes to mind, they are all people, many looking to improve their lot in life. But most, experts say, are running from instability and violence. According to the United Nations, the recent wave of migrants represents the largest dislocation of people since the Second World War. The estimated number of migrants in Europe runs in the hundreds of thousands, up to over a million registered asylum seekers. Thus, the term “migrant crisis,” which is useful shorthand, but doesn’t allow for the scale and scope of human suffering involved. As Europe struggles to cope with the influx (via the sea from Turkey or Libya into Greece or Italy, for the most part), America is bracing for the expected spillover.

Europe’s Migrants Face Struggles Anew With Deportations

Posted April 4th, 2016 at 2:55 pm (UTC-5)
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Just days before Greece began deporting migrants to Turkey under a deal to ease Europe’s migrant crisis, Amnesty International released a report alleging the forced return of Syrians in Turkey back to the very war zone they fled. Not all of the migrants stuck in temporary centers on the coast of Greece are Syrian, but they are migrants nonetheless — vulnerable, stateless and subject to abuse. Fears that terrorists (Syrian migrants are the most likely to be targeted as such) are among them have been stoked from Europe to the United States, while others are protesting what they say is an inhumane policy. Every single person who is now deemed a “migrant” has a story, a compelling reason for leaving their homes, often under dangerous circumstances that are hard to imagine. Migration is a fact of life, historically documented. More than 100 years ago, America was the destination point for those hoping for a better life. Now it’s Europe’s turn. After deadly terrorist attacks in the heart of Europe — Paris and Brussels — the basic human desire to create a better life is colliding head on with rising fears that terrorist groups like ISIS can attack at any time and in any place.

How Russia Is ‘Weaponizing’ Migration to Destabilize Europe

Posted March 25th, 2016 at 1:06 pm (UTC-5)
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[A]ccording to European officials, other migrants are traveling into the Nordic and Baltic states from Russia and are not fleeing the fighting in Syria, Iraq or Afghanistan, but rather have been living in Russia and are being encouraged by the Kremlin to join the tide in Western Europe.

Tackling the Refugee Crisis

Posted March 21st, 2016 at 10:36 am (UTC-5)
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The State Department has been working on its new Innovation Forum, which encourages dialogue between senior policymakers and global innovators to spark fresh ideas