The Global Refugee Crisis

The Global Refugee Crisis

How Should We Respond?

Book - 2016
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The world is facing the worst humanitarian crisis since the Second World War. Over 300,000 are dead in Syria, and one and half million are either injured or disabled. Four and a half million people are trying to flee the country. And Syria is just one of a growing number of failed or failing states in the Middle East and North Africa. How should developed nations respond to human suffering on this mass scale? Do the prosperous societies of the West, including Canada and the U.S., have a moral imperative to assist as many refugees as they reasonably and responsibly can? Or, is this a time for vigilance and restraint in the face of a wave of mass migration that risks upending the tolerance and openness of the West?

The eighteenth semi-annual Munk Debate, which was held on April 1, 2016, pits former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour and leading historian Simon Schama against leader of the UK Independence Party Nigel Farage and bestselling author Mark Steyn to debate the West's response to the global refugee crisis.

Publisher: Toronto : House of Anansi Press, 2016.
ISBN: 9781487002121
Branch Call Number: 362.87 Glo
Characteristics: 94 pages ; 21 cm.


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Apr 11, 2017

Good short read. But I still can't decide which side of the debate to vote on. I can flip flop over and over again regarding taking in refugees from Muslim majority countries.. I don't think the refugees are a security risk, but there are many who do bring with them different cultural and religious values from the norm in Canada. I know this from direct experience living in the Middle East, and working with economic immigrants and tutoring refugees in English here in Canada.

Louise Arbour's response seems to be that in a few generations they will assimilate to Canadian values. True, but what are Canadian values as we have a problem in pinpointing what they are, plus what about in the mean time?

Syrians have much higher birthrates than even the rest of the Middle East, fewer Syrian women work than in the rest of the Middle East, and many refugees are not 'work ready' re English and trades/professional skills the way economic immigrants into Canada are; and not all want their children participating in sports (especially swimming for girls) or music at school.

I've even worked with economic migrants here in a major Cdn city in a global high tech company, who are conservative Moslems. The men refused to look us women in the eye, and they were allowed to create their own prayer space in our office cubicle areas, where they had bowls of water to wash themselves prior to praying, because the building mtce would not allow them to wash their feet in the communal washrooms. Is this the Canada we want?

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