Chris Hedges: Europe’s War on Refugees


Image by Fotomovimiento via Flickr

Dandelion Salad

with Chris Hedges

TheRealNews on Dec 30, 2022

In their book, Map of Hope and Sorrow, co-authors Helen Benedict and Eyad Awwadawnan trace the stories of five refugees trapped in Greece’s brutal refugee camps.

Helen Benedict is a novelist and journalist. Her previous books include The Lonely Soldier: The Private War of Women Serving in Iraq, and Wolf Season.

Eyad Awwadawnan, formerly a law student from Damascus, Syria, is a writer and poet currently living as an asylum-seeker in Reykjavik, Iceland. During his four years in Greece, he worked as a cultural mediator, translator and interpreter for various NGOs.

There are some 84 million forcibly displaced people in the world, more than at any time since World War II. They are fleeing a combination of war, civil unrest, religious conflict, poverty, persecution, local violence and the climate crisis.

As conditions worsen, authoritarian governments are on the rise that denounce immigrants and refugees as contaminants and impose draconian policies to turn them back, including at sea where whole boats of refugees are drowned. Pope Francis calls the Mediterranean “the largest cemetery” in Europe.

The persecution and abuse of refugees is becoming policy, including in Europe, Great Britain, Australia and the United States. It does not matter that the U.S. bears a direct responsibility for the more than 37 million people who have fled the wars in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan since 2001, not to mention the U.S.-backed wars Central America.

The U.S. proxy war in Ukraine has only exacerbated the crisis. The EU is providing money to Greece and Turkey to detain and prevent refugees from seeking asylum in other European countries. The EU is testing sound canons to blast at asylum seekers trying to cross into Greece from Turkey.

The coast guards of Greece and the EU push refugees – including children – back out to sea, causing many to drown. Greece, which imprisons seven out of ten asylum seekers, denies new arrivals, including Afghans, the right to request asylum, unless these arrivals are Ukrainians.

The increased hostility to refugees in the United States, Great Britain, Italy, Belarus, Poland, Croatia, Greece, Spain and Hungary are the building blocks of a new and heartless world order, once where the wealthy industrialized nations of the earth wall off the destitute to suffer and die.

Joining me to discuss the crisis is Helen Benedict, who with Eyad Awwadawnan, wrote Map of Hope and Sorrow: Stories of Refugees in Greece.


From the archives:

Beyond Razor Wire: A Connected Planet, by Robert C. Koehler + American Scar: The Environmental Tragedy of the Border Wall

The Chris Hedges Report: Ukraine and the ‘Worthy’ and ‘Unworthy’ Victims of War

No Human is Alien to Us, by Kenn Orphan

Chris Hedges and Todd Miller: Build Bridges Not Walls: A Journey to a World Without Borders

Why Do They Flee? by William Blum

One thought on “Chris Hedges: Europe’s War on Refugees

  1. There is another ‘graveyard’ just North of Australia.
    Australia’s ‘honourable’ MPs should hang their heads in shame.
    They never will.
    Their hubris is monolithic.

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