While much has been said about this problem, I thought I should offer my own two cents. Immigration from the Middle East and northern Africa, especially concerning what happened in Germany lately, is concerning, to put it lightly. Its a hard fix, as I explained when I argued my own solution in a previous blog post, but it should be fixed nonetheless. Now, I do agree that we should help those that are in need, but at the risk that is in Europe right now after a year of constant ISIS attacks, its not really worth as much as it once was. This call for attacks in countries part of the global coalition against ISIS is a focal point of their ideology and propaganda efforts.
The other part of the problem is the quick pace of how these refugees entered Europe. The vetting process from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is stringent, true, but what we don’t know for sure is the number of refugees mass emigrating to Europe were vetted by the UN. Furthermore, the risk of infiltration of the refugee flow by ISIS members on a statistical scale is low, and even then, they have highly encouraged immigrating to ISIS held-territory, not going to Europe, for in their mind, it is “a dangerous major sin.” Furthermore, information from Frontex shows that between 2013 and 2015, there were 2,207,745 illegal border crossings from all main migration routes into the European Union (minus the Eastern Borders route between the EU’s eastern member countries and Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, and Moldova). While I agree that we should help in some form, as I stated before, the too many refugees in too short a time span without much proper vetting presents a problem. Even then, there still is the possibility that some could be radicalized after the vetting process and once they’re in the country, something that could be stopped, and has produced warning signs within European intelligence organizations, but their infighting and other internal problems does not help with the situation.
In short, further immigration efforts to Europe should be conducted legally, with strict vetting, and quota limits should apply.
The risks for this are just too high for the current policy to continue. Consider the following information about jihadi attacks [mostly done by ISIS] in Europe over the past 2 years compiled by terrorism researcher Thomas Hegghammer.
Between 2014 and 2016, jihadi attacks killed 273 people, more than in all previous years combined (267). Between 2011 and 2015, almost 1,600 people were arrested in jihadism-related investigations in the EU (excluding the UK); an increase of 70% compared with the previous five-year period. In 2015 and 2016, there were 14 jihadi attacks, about 3.5 times more than the biannual average (6) for the preceding fifteen years, [there] were 29 well-documented attack plots, about 2.5 times more than the biannual average (12), [and about] half of the serious plots reached execution, compared with less than a third in the preceding fifteen years.
: Dabiq, Issue 11, Page 23