Political and economic instability in North Africa is driving a renewed surge of migrants into Europe. Italy has been particularly brutalized. Over 44,000 asylum seekers have swarmed into the country this year. Desperate E.U. leaders are now considering taking control of the Libya border.
Italy has poured massive resources into trying to protect its shores from encroachment by migrants, yet the campaign failed. Record numbers of people are fleeing Africa. Despite being warned of the danger of the journey, and the uncertainty of sustenance when they arrive, tens of thousands of people are still willing to risk their lives.
Europe’s morale is flagging under the stress of hosting over one million angry, homeless asylum seekers. Clashes continually break out between the new arrivals and law enforcement. In Italy, the situation has grown dire. Reports indicate the Mafia is gobbling up funds intended for migrants.
If Europe could gain control of Libya’s borders government officials believe that it would dramatically reduce the number of migrants escaping from the country. Libya is in a state of chaos, ruled by dissidents and terrorists. The Libyan government lacks the ability to help its own citizens.
Migrants who embark on the risky Mediterranean journey into Europe are endangering their lives. Human smugglers have seized control of the route. Monsters who care more about profit than safety stuff hundreds of people onto small, rickety boats with no captain.
If they’re lucky enough to make it to Italy they’re beset by further worries. Italian officials have discovered the country’s largest migrant centers are being ruled by the Mafia. It’s believed that different clans may have taken almost 30 percent of the funds that the government has so far doled out to the centers.
“This operation shows the ability of the mafia to take advantage of the weaknesses and fragility of our times with its predatory and parasitic approach,” said Rosy Bindi, head of parliament’s anti-mafia commission.
One particular Italian camp, housing 4,000 people, has been at the center of the controversy. The campgrounds lie on the outskirts of a tiny town that has only 5,000 residents. The human smugglers and Mafia clans have latched onto the camp so strongly that it’s believed that most of the money provided to cover the migrants’ daily expenses is instead lining the pocket of thieves.
“If 500 migrants had to have lunch, just 250 meals would arrive at the center. The other 250 would either have to eat in the evening or else the next day,” prosecutor Nicola Gratteri told a news conference. “In the meantime, the head of the Misericordia, the priest, and their friends grew fat, bought luxury cars, flats, and boats.”
It’s hard enough for the average Italian taxpayer to accept that their hard-earned money is being given to migrants; it’s even worse if that money is actually going to the mob. Tens of thousands of Italian citizens are struggling. Their needs shouldn’t be ignored.
“Don’t transfer any more migrants in our town, we’ve had our share and now our tolerance level is way over the limit,” Anna Aloisi, the mayor of Mineo said. “We’re seated on a bombshell, the only alternative is for locals to leave their homes in order to make room for migrants.”
No one is benefiting from the migrant crisis beyond a few unscrupulous people. The migrants suffer abuse and neglect. The townspeople suffer from dramatically increased crime rates and a diminishing of government resources. Only those who are illegally skimming money from the system are really having their lives improved.
“Immigration is big business for criminals … and the government is an accomplice,” said Matteo Salvini, head of the anti-migrant Northern League party. “Stopping this invasion, by any means possible, has become a duty.”