Here is an update on the refugee aid sent to Berlin by some wonderful people based here in the UK. A campaign which has been affectionately named Berlin Air Bridge 2015. The clothes donations have arrived at the former airport refugee centre in Berlin Tempelhof. Much more is needed.
Comment on FB:
“I didn’t expect the great need for food donations in Berlin. Until new arrivals are registered only volunteers and to some extend NGOs look out for the refugees [frown emoticon]
Due to the unprecedented numbers, the backlog is huge and it can take a week or more before registration, in that time most refugees live in makeshift tents or on the street, the moment winter sets in the consequences will be unimaginable!
Hope other European countries will offer to help Germany and Sweden before it’s too late!
Since the despicable Paris attacks a lot of stupid things have been said about Muslims in general and about the refugees, so here is a gentle reminder of the big picture: The people arriving in Europe are fleeing extremism and insanity. (scroll down for my piece on Syria)
Letting thousands of innocent human beings die on Europe’s roads during the winter because they share the same religion (not the same preverted practice of said religion) as the attackers in Paris is barbaric and shameful.
What is being said on twitter in reply to my appeal tweets is no longer simplifying things, it is plainly stupid. (scroll down for more on this).
Especially in the wake of what has happened, let’s remember what it is to be human: To help, to care and to give. Not to hate.
Watch these videos of the goods arriving in the “Berlin Air Bridge 2015” from the Uk to Berlin:
4600 SOCKS were delivered to the camp Merel Graeve
Since his Serbia trip he has raised almost £3000 and the campaign continues with further trips planned to Lesvos and Berlin Tempelhof again.
Money is needed for storage of clothes donations and more urgent food aid in Berlin.
Other notable campaigns and links
Rachel Kwei, who is currently in Lesvos:
The situation got far worse, hundreds are dying every night due to risky trips on dodgy rubber dinghies or due to hypothermia by sleeping outside on the roads.
Does it really take another picture, this time of a pile of dead children on a Greek beach to make people aware of what’s happening?
Please share and share again, everyone needs to be aware of the very real risk of thousands of dead frozen bodies on the side of Europe’s roads and on Greek beaches once winter sets.
And here is a link for those of you who have asked for information on volunteering
“This is an invasion – even Hitler couldn’t do that.”
“It’s their problem, they need to sort it out”
“Islam must not spread”
Prejudice, hate and stupidity often go hand in hand:
The refugees, who happen to be Muslims, are actually fleeing a perverted version of Islam. They don’t spread Islam by moving countries, and most certainly not the kind that ‘we all’ are so afraid of. Friends (of friends) of mine in Germany have taken in 24 Muslims into their home and their guests have no problem with living with a male gay couple. Let’s be honest, the Western and Christian world still has a long way before it can get on a high moral horse over any rival religion or race.
What is happening is our problem as one human race. We can’t watch and let them freeze to death on our European soil. History will judge us for how we handle this.
And besides: even the right leaning “Economist” says that the refugees are good news for Western Europe and not a threat to the economy.
If they were integrated right away and allowed to work, instead of being ghetto-ed up in camps with no purpose, they would earn money and pay taxes and on statistical average pay back the handouts they received really quick.
I’m repeating myself but as writer of historical novels I also cannot stress the parallels to the past enough:
How many Jews stayed in Germany, thinking Hitler’s madness must come to an end and foreign governments would intervene? Germany was their home, why should they leave? Worldwide, their fellow humans didn’t help and called the refugees migrants and opportunists, as many people do today.
I don’t blame the Syrians for not hanging around to see if Isis or their president gets them first. If I was them, I would go, too. Would you bet your life against such madness?
First and foremost, these people are refugees, not migrants.
I see chocolate Santas on sale already – how many lives will be having on our conscious by X-mas?
I would also like to repeat my personal experience with Syria.
In 1990 I’ve been on a month long holiday inSyria. This was long before ISIS started to behead people, imposed its inhumane laws and blew up anything in its way; before its own president started to shoot at ‘his’ people.
The country was peaceful, modern in many ways and not at all poverty ridden. This is not an economical crisis. These people are trying to save their naked lives.
Political inaction has caused this crisis, not greed and opportunism on the refugees behalf. Just google Syrian refugees and look at the pictures. Nobody choses such a life on the road unless they have to. As fellow humans we owe them. We need to help.