Despite quite a dramatic start, the new year has summoned nothing new for our country, or to paraphrase this better, nothing that we don’t know about. Unsurprisingly, illegal immigration is still rife in the Mediterranean. Whether the reason that the hundreds (or thousands?) who are trying to reach the European continent from the south, is to escape war and civil unrest or whether as economic migrants in search of cities ‘paved with gold’, is at this point, irrelevant.
The latest immigration debacle has also reaffirmed what most Europeans have known for a very long time; the EU is made up of nothing but a bunch of autocrats who rarely, if ever, bother to peek out of their ivory tower and try to understand just what ails the average European. Instead, they fête each other and congratulate themselves on their imaginary or inconsequent achievements, which over the past quarter of a century have initiated the slow but sure annihilation of European civilisation as we know it.
Take the latest immigration fiasco which has divided our country right down the middle. Should we bite the bullet and let this latest influx of immigrants in, only to signal the opening of the inevitable floodgates once again? Or do we stand our ground until the powers that be in Brussels, get off their sorry asses and realise that something, anything which proves to be a tangible solution needs to be done? Meanwhile, as this tragic situation unfolded, our people turn on each other, one faction accusing another who thinks of this situation as unsustainable of inhumanity, guilt tripping everyone and his uncle for merely questioning whether it is a wise decision to open our ports once again, to what indisputably is another unqualified quantity. But it is also indisputable that these are human beings, and one cannot and should not put a proviso, whatever that may, be on human life. And so, the dilemma continues…
Thankfully, after a long stretch of procrastination and general head burying in the sand by the inept EU, an agreement of sorts has finally been reached. The irony remains that the EU is currently made up of 28 countries, and in the much-touted spirit of European solidarity, the one which is constantly rammed down our throats, only a measly eight countries offered to help host the immigrants. So, I and many others ask, where are the other 20 countries? Is this the kind of solidarity we have been stupid enough to buy into so many years ago?
All of this without touching on the fact that even if all EU members accept and welcome their share of this ever-growing monumental burden, it still won’t result by any stretch in the finding of a viable solution to end this plague, once and for all. How many immigrants should an EU country, regardless of its resources, be prepared to accept before it reaches breaking point? How many thousands are on standby, ready to flee Syria or Sudan, Eritrea or Yemen, Congo or Nigeria? Whatever happened to tackling the problem at source instead of crippling a whole continent with another’s woes?
And yet, and yet, when one voices these concerns, all hell breaks loose, and the solidarity card is given a good airing once again… A get-out-of-jail-free card for those who shirk all responsibility towards their European fellowmen but still want the rest of us to show our humanity to every Tom, Dick or Harry who reaches our shores.
But this is not all which ails our nation… Ever closer to home, we are witnessing a political landscape which is a first in our political history; an Opposition leader who is plagued by a myriad of accusations, ranging from domestic violence to hefty amounts in unpaid taxes, yet is adamant that he should soldier on, come what may. The leader of an Opposition wherein the savage infighting is further decimating what once was a proud party with a solid tradition.
Amid this troubling scenario, the Maltese people must make do with a half-functioning democracy, at least until someone wakes up and realises that this isn’t a power struggle for the sake of it, but hey! it’s supposedly about the wellbeing of a whole nation and all its citizens… Now who would’ve thought that a stint in politics involves more than just the perks? Talk about missing the woods for the trees!
And then, to add to this sorry mix, we have to contend with an ex-leader of the Opposition who despite two landslide electoral defeats and a number of requests on his part for magisterial inquests which are being consistently thrown out by the court (besides other unforgettable chestnuts – though in retrospect, the mere whisper of the name Egrant says it all), still manages to cling on like a viral rash, in the hope that one day soon he will be anointed as PN leader once again. Given this bloody grim backdrop, it would be easy to conclude that all in all it has been business as usual for our blessed little island. Never mind the ‘new year, new start’ bollocks, the sun will still rise from the east on our little islands, we will forever be divided no matter how much we pretend otherwise, our thirst for power knows no limits and the EU was, is and will remain a rich gravy train for the ‘chosen few’… so simply put, it’s just another, same shit, different day kind of scenario…
Opinion. Giselle Scicluna