‘Immigrants welcome; law-abiding citizens not so much.’
Perhaps this should be the new motto of the UK Home Office which seems to be taking a very weird turn of direction under its supposedly Thatcherite Home Secretary Priti Patel.
As Exhibit A, consider the Home Office’s latest Tweet:
We've now resettled over , since 2015 through the Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme.
And today, we're announcing £14m of support to refugees here in the UK with English language & employment support. pic.twitter.com/VfblBIYaUq
— Home Office (@ukhomeoffice) March 18, 2021
Wait? What? This reads like something from a parallel universe, where Labour, not Boris Johnson’s ‘Conservatives’ won the general election and mass immigration was being implemented unchecked.
Britain’s problem with integrating Syrian refugees — if that is indeed what they are: many will have destroyed their passports to hide their true origins — date back many years. Back in the days when such statistics were available, for instance, the Sun reported that ‘hundreds of Syrians in Britain were arrested last year for a string of offences including rape, death threats and child abuse.’
But let’s suppose that every one of those 20,000 ‘refugees’ the government boasts of is a blameless doctor/nurse/top surgeon/World-Cup-winning striker – what on earth is the UK doing depriving Syria of its most energetic talent?
As Professor Paul Collier wrote in the Spectator at the height of the Syrian conflict in 2015, the rightful place of Syrians is in their homeland Syria.
Providing a skilled minority of Syrians with dream lives in Europe is not the answer: it would be detrimental to recovery because once settled in Europe, with their children in schooling, such people would be unlikely to go back to a post-conflict society. In consequence, it would gut Syria of the very people it will most need. It is an intellectually lazy feel-good policy for the bien‑pensant.
And this isn’t the view of some blimpish little Englander. Collier is a lefty academic, with whom I disagree on a lot of issues. But in this case, he is bang on. Mass immigration isn’t just bad for the people already living in the host country; it’s even worse for the immigrants who end up stuck in a climate they’re not used to and forced to adopt a new language and new cultural values.
The war in Syria is more or less over, so much so that Denmark is now sending Syrian migrants home. It’s time for the country to rebuild itself – and the only people who can do that are Syrians.
Immigration is a huge issue with Conservative voters, especially in the Red Wall constituencies of the Midlands and the North, not least because working-class voters are at the sharp end and experience the downsides of mass migration sooner and more strongly than middle-class ones.
You might have imagined, as a consequence, that this ‘Conservative’ government would be keen to get a grip on the problem.
Instead, as Breitbart has often reported, the government’s response has been woeful.
Here is a report from earlier this month:
Home Office figures revealed that some 10,373 foreign criminals have been released from prison yet have so far skirted deportation — meaning the number of foreign national offenders living in British communities has hit the highest level in recorded history.
Here is another from January, headlined ‘UK Deportations Fell 79 per cent Last Year, Despite Promises’.
Figures reported on by The Sun reveal that the number of deportations fell dramatically last year, however, compared to the 5,322 deported in 2019. The number of removals was also just twenty per cent of the ten-year average of 5,405 per year.
Commenting on the failure of the government to keep its promises, the Migration Watch UK think tank said: “It’s all very well for the Home Secretary to talk tough, but the fact is the number of foreign national offenders being removed over the last few years has plummeted.”
What IS going on?
It’s not as though Priti Patel’s Home Office isn’t capable of being incredibly tough when it wants to be – such as its recent, scarily totalitarian decision effectively to abolish the right to protest.
But maybe this is all part of a super-subtle strategy: make Britain such an unpleasant, overregulated police state that no immigrant would dream of wanting to come here when they can stay somewhere much more tranquil and benign and free like West Africa, the Middle East or Afghanistan…
It’s a cunning plan and it might just work. Certainly, increasing numbers of us are looking abroad at what we used to think of fly-blown foreign hellholes and musing: ‘Well it could hardly be any worse than Boris Johnson’s Britain…’