The heart-rending picture of Syrian toddler Aylan Kurdi washed ashore – dead – has made many cry and lament his death around the world. While advocates of open borders are using this tragedy as an opportunity to press on the west to show compassion for refugees fleeing disaster zones, not many are asking what or who really killed Aylan and his brother, along with 10 others, by drowning in Turkish waters.
The first question – which mainstream media isn’t discussing – is: was Aylan’s family really in desperate need to get to safety? Looking at the media reports, it is obvious they were not in any such need. They had safely arrived in Turkey and set off from Bodrum peninsula in Turkey in the dead of the night to reach Kos Island in Greece and then make their way ultimately to Canada. There was no threat to their life in Bodrum far as media has reported. Why were they desperate to leave Turkey and that in the dark of the night on a small boat with no safety measures?
The answer is crystal clear – the father wanted to get to the west illegally, despite the reports that his application for asylum in Canada had been rejected by the Canadian government in June. As a refugee, he could stay in Turkey or any nearby Islamic country, though being a Kurd could possibly restrict his options because of the political corruption and interests that target minorities like the Kurds, using them to create unrest on borders. But a large number of Kurds live all over Turkey, particularly in the Anatolia region.
People who face death threat don’t go back to the place they had been fleeing, not without security; but Aylan’s father did. He just returned to Kobane in Syria – his hometown – bury his dead kids. And terrible as his tragedy as a father is, I can’t help wondering what kind of a father he is to place the dream of the west above the safety of his children! Is Canadian citizenship so important that you risk the lives of your young children, your family, for it? For me, if my pet dog was at risk of death or even injury, I would not take a minute in giving up any chance of staying in the west or millions of dollars in any way. Reason? Because I care!
Now what facilitated this tragedy? Who made it possible? Certainly the father wasn’t going to swim across the ocean. But there are human smuggler groups who help you in illegally crossing borders. The boat people carrying Aylan’s family and others were the culprits here. As of now, they have been arrested by the Turkish authorities. It’s important to subject them to the harshest penalties to assure the world that running death boats is akin to assistance in murder, and is not tolerated.
David Cameron recently reminded the world that breaking illegally into UK is not acceptable. UK is getting stricter each day on border defense issues because it learned – albeit the hard way – that allowing illegal immigration is no different than hoarding a pile of explosives that will sooner or later catch fire. And while the ignorant, assertive-on-media so-called human rights advocates censured Cameron for lacking compassion, those who can realize the seriousness of this problem see how right he has been and how urgently the west, including the United States, needs to take effective measures in curbing illegal immigration and set up legal and safe channels to accommodate those who are in “real” need of shelter – not just those who want to flee to the west to lazily fall on government benefits paid by the hard-working people of that country.
Aylan is dead; he is not coming back, no matter how bad we want him to; he is the victim of an attitude deeply rooted in a delusion that itself is perpetuated by lack of action by world leaders against the deadly traffickers and human smugglers. If this child’s death won’t make us act to stop this deadly madness of border-crossing, what will?