Tuesday, July 23, 2019
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Pedro Rodríguez: Sleepwalkers

Pedro Rodriguez


One of the most cited history books in these depressing days is "Sleepwalkers" (Galaxia Gutenberg, 798 pages) of the Australian Christopher Clark. The professor of the University of Cambridge explains the genesis between banal and careless of the First World War. Its disturbing conclusion is that this obscene catastrophe – which ended with twenty million fatalities and led to World War II – could have been avoided if the responsible parties had not opted to walk asleep.

For a long time, this great reproach of the laziness that supposes the "sleepwalking" is applicable to a good part of the problems that Europe suffers a hundred years after the Great War. With a painfully prominent place for the dangerous automatism and comfortable complaints demonstrated by the European Union before the very serious refugee crisis that began in the spring of 2015.

The exodus of hundreds of thousands of desperate people, dangerously channeled through the Mediterranean, has managed to threaten one of the most important achievements of the European Union: the Schengen agreement on the free movement of people between most of the member countries of the EU and also a number of non-EU countries.

Along with Schengen, the other major agreement questioned by this lethal scheme is the way in which the European Union processes asylum applications through the so-called Dublin system, in reference to the first regulation of this kind approved on June 15, 1990 in the Irish capital and that requires refugees to apply for asylum in their first country of entry into the EU.

This crisis, accompanied by so much indifference, has shattered the mutual trust and solidarity among European partners, starting with the fiasco of an equitable distribution of immigrants through compulsory quotas. Not forgetting the European Court of Human Rights based in Strasbourg that just rejected the emergency appeal against the closed ports of Italy presented by the ship Sea Watch 3. In this way, Europe will be able to continue as sleepwalking as ever.

Pedro RodriguezPedro Rodriguez

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