Friday, November 20, 2015

Rex Murphy On Canada's Refugee Plans

While I am hardly dismissive of those who are expressing concerns about the speed with which the Liberal government is planning to bring in Syrian refugees, those concerns, I believe, are being exploited by some for less than noble purposes. Take, for example, Rec Murphy's point of view, expressed on last night's National news broadcast, my critique of which follows the video:


At first blush, as is often the case with Murphy's pontifications, his position sounds quite reasonable. However, if you listen to it carefully, moving past his gratuitous endorsements of Brad Wall and the former Harper regime, the subtext of his message is that there is much to fear from the Syrian influx that might be bearing within its midst ISIS agents coolly biding their time while they plot our destruction.

Such a jaundiced view is at variance with the facts of Canada's refugee plans. Murphy chooses to conflate the Paris attacks and Syrian refugee situation in Europe, which has seen massive numbers enter with little or no documentation, with Canada's plan:
They will most likely come from Jordan, Turkey or Lebanon, where almost all have been registered by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Jihadis interested in violence are not going to sit in a refugee camp for months — sometimes years — waiting for an interview with a visa officer, say experts.

“The idea that ISIS would use the refugee system to infiltrate Canada is vastly overblown. There is no history of this,” said Wesley Wark, a security expert and professor at the University of Ottawa. “You could never be certain your jihadi would even arrive.”
Some of the refugees in the camps have been there since 2011, when the civil war in Syria began.
Normally, government-sponsored refugees go through three levels of intense screening for criminality, war crimes and medical needs. UNHCR officials conduct detailed interviews and identity checks in the country of first asylum. Even if Syrians don’t have passports, most carry national identity cards with bar codes.

“We question them about past or current military activities or affiliations, including their future plans. We have a number of biometric security and anti-fraud measures including iris scanning,” said a UNHCR spokesperson. The registration data is entered into an interconnected global system.

The UNHCR then triages the refugees, and selects a very small number (about 1 per cent) who would make good candidates for resettlement by countries such as Canada. Women with children, unaccompanied minors, the elderly, sick and vulnerable are given priority.
More details about the process can be accessed here.

The wisdom of bringing in 25,000 refugees on a very compressed schedule is certainly a fit topic for debate. Rex Murphy's pandering to fears and prejudices is not.

7 comments:

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    1. i've heard him called many things, Mound. I'll add 'Fenian bastard' to the list.

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    2. Whether Murphy is a proponent of Irish unification or whether he was born out of wedlock has no bearing on the subject.

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  2. How quickly we forget that who created this tragedy. W. Bush who invaded Iraq and now we are seeing the aftermath.

    As for as Murphy is concerned he is a Harper Con and he will continue his babbling. I am ashamed that he is a fellow Atlantic Canadian.

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    1. It puzzles me, LD, that the CBC continues to employ him. He seems to have little to offer to the national discussion on anything.

      As for Bush's culpability in the creation of ISIS, so much of the mainstream media seem to be allergic to unpleasant truths.

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