Just a short post because I’m between trips. Going to a music festival this weekend and went to Calais last weekend to take some stuff for the migrants, so thought I’d do a short write up about my time there.
The situation has calmed down since the tunnel invasion of the previous week but is still serious as people are desperate to buy their way into England. The police continue to patrol the area and prevent some migrants going into town. This makes life incredibly difficult for the inhabitants of the jungles and camp Salam.
I’ve no idea who named them but the territory referred to as the jungles is an expanse of dryland and wetland, which is interrupted by the network of motorways, A roads, lorry parks and shopping complexes. Different cultures camp out in different sections and despite talk of organised crime in the media many people have simply saved up the money to buy a lorry, when they reach France. People can be inventive in the way they set up their living space too.
Fortunately there are no small children in the jungles at present but I did meet a 13 year old Afghan boy in 2009, he was travelling with his older brother.
The price of Pillage
The tunnel invasion appears to have evoked positive responses in many British people as they now realise what people endure and how their desperation is a result of the carnage, which is spreading, through Africa and the Arabic world.
Taking back ownership of the means of production
A Sudanese man explained how the disruption in Libya has displaced so many Sudanese and other African people. By the same token nobody was forced to leave Syria before the funding of mercenaries by Britain and its cohorts. Sudan is oil rich but as the western dictatorship and its corporations take everything for itself, the Sudanese people don’t even have the basics.
When countries do try to develop their own resources the west inevitably bombs them, Iraq and Libya are a case in point.
Its not about the E.U. doing ”something to help”, people don’t need patronage. Like in other countries the Sudanese people need to benefit from the resources but it is the western corporations who own the means of production and in effect steal everything. It is colonisation, that has enabled the west to develop and no doubt pays for Britain’s health service, particularly now as the rate of taxation is so low for the rich. Why not let everyone benefit from it?
If the support goes
The situation in Calais has changed many times since my first involvement in 2009. The jungles have been evicted many times but many of the inhabitants are applying to stay in France, though they don’t receive any financial support. Up to now there is some support for people seeking asylum in Britain but David Cameron is talking about ending this.
Holding pens like Yarls Wood are a disgrace and if all support ends then more people will be interned in terrible conditions. At least in the Calais jungles people can breathe but none of these alternatives are acceptable. The west need to stop the carnage now and live within its means.
It’s not only France that is affected by the upheaval, which is the result of war and the pursuit of profit, an exercise, which has spiralled out of control. The Greek islands are in the news and the contrast between now and the early 1980s is stark. At time there were lots of migrants living and working, particularly on the island of Crete. There was lots of work then as many of the Greek young men did not like to do the fruit picking.
The election of 1981 resulted in an all out victory for the socialist Pasok party and life was hopeful. Andreus Papandreas began talks with the outside world by inviting Yasser Arafat and Robert Mugabe for talks before anyone from the E.U. Greece had already entered the common market so from there it was downhill all the way. For Greece its association with Europe has brought nothing but grief.