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30 August 2015


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My question is what is wrong with my German government. Taking in 800,000 economic refugees who had already reached places of moderate safety does not make any sense. At least not for the well-being of the average German.


Apropos the lead story in today's German papers shows barbed wire barriers being erected along Hungary's southern borders. Maybe someone should alert the Donald to come and observe (snark alert)

Ishmael Zechariah

Col. Lang,

re: "Hungary had a long experience of oppression at the hands of the Ottoman Empire."

Does this resentment stem from the Ottoman rule which ended 300 years ago (~1541 to 1699)?
While this might be a possibility, The Hungarians have never struck me as a benign and compassionate people.

I find it ironic that the neocons, whose grandparents might have been refugees, are the reason for the flight of the Syrians-poor unfortunates; the new Jews.
Ishmael Zechariah


Ishmael Zechariah

There are Hungarians who read here and they will be heard I hope. My personal impression of the Hungarian sentiment about Muslims and Turks in particular was formed in a number of official and later business trips around the country. IMO there is a kind of Jungian national memory of Turkish rule. This is a factor in events down in the Balkans as well. We should remember that Bosnian Muslims are the remnants and results of Ottoman rule. We know what the effects of that were after the dissolution of Yugoslavia. An example of the continuing feeling in Hungary was an occasion in which I was in the Hungarian national art galleru in Buda in the old Imperial palace. I passed a large oil the theme of which was the entry of Austrian forces into Budapest in 1699. Among the figures in the painting were numerous dead Turkish soldiers. My host, s senior officer of the Hungarian Army, pointed to them and remarked, "there you see some good Turks." pl

A. Pols

Maybe we are what is wrong with the Hungarians?
The Syrian refugees have nowhere to go and the Europeans have nowhere to put them.
What we have to gain in actuality from furthering the disintegration of the Syrian State is quite the question. Cui Bono?
And the Libyans? Gives new meaning to "Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea".

Ursa Maior

Just some short remarks due to lack of time more to come later.

1. Main immigrant route was not through Hungary until this summer.
2. Hungary is more or less a protectorate of Germany (think Puerto Rico) due to numerous reasons. When the great Audi factory on Gyor closed down last year for summer maintenace, GDP growth fell from something like 2,7 to 2,0.
3. We have enough problems with our major minority gypsies namely.
4. All other (EU, and non-EU) countries on this route do nothing but actively support this plight to Germany, France, UK.
5. We have a really bad press for violating some unwritten rules about taxing banks, and international monopolies.

William R. Cumming

Were the best and brightest of Hungarian society killed or forced to flee in 1956?

FB Ali

I doubt that Merkel (or other Northern Europe conservative leaders) have suddenly gone 'wobbly' - as the Brits used(?) to say. (That malady only afflicts the dwindling band of old-time Socialists).

Aware of their countries' dwindling birth rates they are merely ensuring a new influx of labour (to perform the many tasks that are still done more cheaply by humans than by robots) and to widen the pool of young talent from which will emerge the leaders of future technological advances.

These refugees are the cream of their societies, having proven themselves survivors in the struggle for existence going on there.


I think it's more they don't want to be a way stop for an unknown number of an unknown element coming from a war zone. Personally I don't blame them.

The snapback in Europe from TPTB deciding to overrule the decisions of the people is going to be messy as hell.

FB Ali

I think the reason why Hungary will not happily send them on to Germany is because they do not have the documents that the Germans require. Those with the documents are allowed into Hungary and swiftly transported out of the country. The rest are kept out with razor wire and patrols; if they somehow get in, they are kept in these miserable camps, until they manage to leave the country on their own.

Laura Wilson

Col et al--How do you think this refugee situation could/should be handled? Is there a better/model out there currently or something from the past? Is there a better place for the refugees to go?


Norbert M. Salamon

Many of the brightest left Hungary after 1956 - including the majority of the Sopron Forestry University, both faculty and students.
A point not mentioned in the article above and in this forum is that Hungary is rather poor country compared to most Western and Nordic Europe.
Aside from the above the situation in Budapest does not reach the problems of the Superdome in New Orleans.

The Twisted Genius

Maybe some Hungarian officials are afraid Germany and other countries will send the refugees back to them in a sick game of hot potato. Found this "Hungary Today" article warning of the return of 19,000 refugees because of the Dublin Agreement. Seems that once refugees seek asylum in one country, that country is responsible for them according to this EU agreement. It's probably a lot more complicated than that, but couple that with xenophobic emotions and economic fears and you got a real mess. I was in Augsburg and Karlsruhe when the Deutsche Wiedervereinigung was implemented. Emotions ran high against the Ossies... and that was among fellow Germans



Laura Wilson

We should time travel back 20 years or so and strangle a few neocons in their sleep so as to prevent them destabilizing the ME. pl



"Hungary's new "Law on the Right to Freedom of Conscience and Religion, and on Churches, Religions and Religious Communities" was enacted 12 July 2011 and it recognizes only 14 religious groups. Islam is not included in this list and Muslims have to apply to get official recognition under the new law. Under the law, only 14 of 358 registered churches and religious associations will be granted legal recognition, while others will have to reapply for legal registration after two-thirds approval in parliament.[9]

On 27 February 2012, Hungary's parliament amended the country's controversial law on religious organizations to expand the list of officially recognized the Hungarian Islamic Council.[10]" wiki on Islam in Hungary. there only about 5,600 Muslims in Hungary. That being the case it is remarkable that Hungary chose to enact a religious toleration act that only belatedly included Islam.

Jungian national group memories persist a long time. The Jewish diaspora' yearning for Palestine and the history of Ireland are two examples.

Perhaps we should all re-read Christine Helms' famous essay on national memory.





Yes, the refugees flooding Europe are the direct result of the policies of regime change. The only way to solve the problem is end the perpetual wars. Partition the Levant with strong borders. Quarantine the Islamic State. Return the refugees to safe areas with aid and security.

Predatory Capitalism, Climate Change and Overpopulation are working together to assure a perfect storm that will engulf the developed world unless mankind gets them under control.



"The Germans say they will take 800,000 refuges this year."

I think that's a misunderstanding. The German Minister of Interior said that he expects 800,000 refuges to arrive this year in Germany. And further he said packaged in diplomatic words that the German government will do it's best to get rid of the bulk of the refugees asap, mostly by sending them back to their point of entry into the EU, eg Hungary or Bulgaria. The only exception will be, and that's the new and much lauded from abroad position from the German government, refugees from Syria, which will be allowed to stay. Refugees from Syria are only a small faction of the total.



"Aside from the above the situation in Budapest does not reach the problems of the Superdome in New Orleans." What a mean spirited thing to say. How's the "peak oil" thing working for you? Tit for tat. pl



So, the Germans want the white refugees? pl

Norbert M. Salamon

Colonel, with respect:

Libya, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Mali, Egypt, Iran, Palestine etc.; are all suffering from WATER shortness and to some extent, where it applies, to USA regime change aka destruction of civil society.
You, Sir berate me for mentioning Superdome, Hungary is not responsible for these problems, not can she support endless refugees. Neither is Hungary the only European nation which has problems with refugees from North Africa, Middle East.
I am aware that there is strong push by various governments to change the Schengen free movement regulations regarding movement within EU. Russia has absorbed over one million Ukrainians, compared to the negligible numbers form Europe.
Finally I am not aware of any large scale Middle East refugees given rights to go to your country, notwithstanding that your country is one of the prime causes of the recent refugee problem [also includes Ukrainians].

With respect to peak oil, I mentioned to you, Sir, to wait 6 month or so, then revisit the oil supply situation -- new exploration is cut back, depletion is ever present and alternative oil sources are too expensive in today's prices [shale gas oil in USA, tar sands in Canada, tar sands in the Orinoco Basin, deep sea sources, etc].

The Twisted Genius

"So, the Germans want the white refugees?"

I wouldn't be at all surprised if that's true. I'm pretty sure a lot of Americans prefer white northern European immigrants to the swarthy Mediterranean types coming here now.

Margaret Steinfels

All: Apropos of immigration, emigration, refugees, asylum seekers, etc., this headline at Juan Cole:

"Palestine overwhelmed by Illegal American Immigrants." http://bit.ly/1JuWjsF



Do you think it makes sense for the average German to have three German federal states basically subsidise the other 13? I do (but then, I would. I live in bankrupt Berlin). Either there is a European Union or there isn't. If there is, then of course it makes sense to distribute refugees by quota according to the member states' population and/or GDP, instead of leaving the poorest states to bear the lion's share of the burden. Especially that they simply cannot afford to provide "moderate safety" to so many people, if one takes moderate safety to also include a roof and running water.



IMO this mass migration has nothing to do with water shortages and everything to do with US disruption of the political systems of the MENA states. So, you want me to wait a Friedman Unit before you will concede on the oils question? Fine, I will do that. BTW how many of these representatives of this latest volkervanderung is Canada going to take on their way to eventual settlement in the USA? pl

Bryn P

Given the US' major contribution to this problem perhaps you might like to consider accepting a few hundred thousand of these refugees?

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