No one is quite sure where the so called Chinese Curse came from. In fact, no one is sure that it really came from China.
Here is the curse, “May you live in interesting times“.
Which might seem like a mere pleasantry, but if you look at history the most interesting times involved conflict and disruption.
Interesting does not necessarily mean good or entertaining.
Anyone who has been following the “Syrian” refugee crisis should understand that the influx of migrants has a certain “Never let a crisis go to waste.” flavor to it. A lot of people who look to be mid eastern males of military age seem to be in among the refugees. Are they really fleeing danger and seeking asylum or are they opportunists of some sort or another? I think the answer will be interesting, to say the least.
Germany announced that it would take several thousand refugees, but apparently had no plans in place to receive, house, feed, or vet the flood of immigrants that would come.
As a result, Germany has now re instituted border controls that it abandoned as part of the process of joining the European Union.
For the first time in twenty years, Europe’s borders are closing again. First Austria, then Denmark and now Germany have implemented partial border suspensions of the Schengen principle of free movement. As the Syrian refugee crisis evolves into the European migrant crisis, more closures may be on the way. Europe is disintegrating under the moral pressure of hundreds of thousands of people needing and demanding help.
Horrified by the human suffering and loss of life on Europe’s southern and eastern borders, I proffered a realist analysis of the emerging crisis in an August 24 article for The National Interest. In the article, I labeled the European response to the crisis as “sheer madness.” Anticipating subsequent events, I concluded that:
Continuing accommodation will yield an exponential growth in migrant numbers (and deaths), a spiraling crisis that will ultimately break the Schengen agreement. The European Union faces a clear choice: open borders without or open borders within. The old liberal dream of both at once cannot survive the harsh reality of our unequal world.
Well, that’s certainly interesting. Germany was apparently a bit overly optimistic about it’s ability to take in so many refugees. Or perhaps the terms is immigrants.
Germany also signaled it’s willingness to take in refugees even if other countries didn’t want them. Which as the article notes created a giant sucking sound heard all over the Middle East. Note also that the offer was extended only to “Syrian” refugees, but the influx is from all over the Middle East and South Asia. The nations of which have evinced no interest in helping their neighbors flee oppression.
All of these would be immigrants passing through southern Europe towards Germany have created havoc in those countries.
Europe is experiencing a series of cascading border closures, rippling outward like circuit breakers tripping during a power surge. A week ago, Denmark suspended its rail link to Germany. On Monday, Germany closed its border with Austria. Austria, Slovakia, and the Netherlands all clamped “temporary” border restrictions into place.
On Tuesday, Hungary sealed its border with Serbia; yesterday, Hungarian border guards used water cannons, tear gas, and truncheons to beat back a sea of migrants. This in turn forced more than 5,000 people to seek an alternate path through Croatia north to Slovenia and Germany. Croatian authorities indicated that while they want to help, Croatia’s capacity for handling migrant flows was limited to the thousands, not to the tens of thousands. And then Slovenian authorities today announced that they would reinforce their border with Croatia, potentially creating another dead end for the thousands of migrants massing in the Balkans.
More interesting times for officials (and probably some of the residents) of those countries.
“One fears that if reasonable people do not somehow apply a brake to this wild excess of selfless saintliness, unreasonable people eventually will.”
That will be interesting, in the same way that Europe’s history of dealing with unwanted populations has been “interesting” for hundreds of years.
The huge figure was revealed today by Hungary’s minister for foreign affairs and trade Peter Szijjártó.
Speaking as the country begins work on its second fence to stop migrants heading across its border he predicted the current crisis will continue for years.
Mr Szijjártó told Hungarian Times: “The name of the fence is ‘Temporary Security Border Fence’ but I think there is no question that in this case temporary means years.
“It’s a self delusion to call this situation a migration crisis; it is a massive migration of nations, with inexhaustible reserves.
“I don’t think that the analysis results, stating that 30-35 million people out there could possibly become migrants, would be an exaggeration.
This is not a refugee problems, it’s not even a mass migration. It’s an invasion pure and simple. No guns, at least not at first, carried by the immigrants, but an influx this large into Europe will strain budgets, government services, wreak havoc on the native cultures of the host countries, and change the face of what we think of as “Europe”.
I used to joke at work that there was nothing as permanent as a temporary anything. Only it wasn’t a joke because it was true most of the time. I was a “temporary” hire for 35 years before I retired. One of my co workers was hired and assigned “temporarily” to the night shift. From which he retired 40 years later. One of our main receiving hospitals had a “temporary” Emergency Department for almost 20 years. Oh, and my state has had a “temporary” sales tax since the early 1960s. You get the point.
I think this is going to be a “temporary” period of “interesting times” in Europe.
As one cynic said, “In Europe, somehow it always seems to end up with people being loaded into cattle cars.”
That will be interesting indeed.