Sunday, August 02, 2015

Syria's Refugee Crisis Just Got Worse

Syria’s Refugee Crisis Just Got Worse

by Stephen Lendman

US wars on humanity caused the gravest refugee crisis since WW II - millions displaced, mostly victims of imperial conflicts and chaos, suffering hugely, many perishing from deprivation, an appalling high crime too horrific to ignore.

How do displaced people cope with limited access to nutritious food, at times any, inadequate or no medical care, lack of education for children and other essentials? 

How do they survive? How can anyone not experiencing their suffering imagine life in hellhole refugee camps or displacement on their own without minimal lifelines?

Nearly half of Syria’s 23 million people are imperial war victims - displaced by violence (internally or abroad), fleeing for their lives to unknown destinies. Many perhaps running out of time, minimal resources, energy and will to go on.

It bears repeating what other articles stressed. There’s nothing civil about war in Syria. Obama planned and launched it to topple its government, destroy its sovereignty, and install pro-Western stooges - using proxy Islamic State and other takfiri terrorists to do his dirty work, supplemented by US bombing Syria’s infrastructure on the phony pretext of waging war on IS.

Millions of adversely affected Syrians are considered a small price to pay - including hundreds of thousands killed, many more wounded, an entire population traumatized by US state terror. Imperial arrogance has no limits.

In early July, the World Food Program (WFP) announced major cuts in food assistance to Syrian refugees in Lebanon and Jordan because of inadequate funding.

“Just when we thought things couldn’t get worse, we are forced yet again to make yet more cuts,” Muhannad Hadi, WFP Regional Director for the Middle East, North Africa, Central Asia and Eastern Europe explained. 

“Refugees were already struggling to cope with what little we could provide.” Now they’ll get much less - around half what they got before.

In Lebanon, food vouchers were cut to $13.50 per person monthly - less than 50 cents a day to survive, not enough for single bare bones meal in pre-war Syria.

WFP said without enough funding in August, it’ll suspend all aid to around 440,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan living outside camps.

Its regional refugee operations are currently over 80% underfunded. An immediate $139 million is needed to continue feeding desperate refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt through September alone.

Inadequate resources forced major cutbacks in aid afforded around 1.6 million Syrian refugees in five countries.

“We are extremely concerned about the impact these cuts will have on refugees and the countries that host them,” Hadi stressed. 

“Families are taking extreme measures to cope such as pulling their children out of school, skipping meals and getting into debt to survive. The long-term effects of this could be devastating.”

Contributions from governments and other sources don’t keep pace with growing needs. WFP tries providing aid for around 80 million people in 75 countries.

In June, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said wars and persecution “forced more people than at any other time since records began to flee their homes and seek refuge and safety elsewhere” - around 60 million at yearend 2014, numbers increasing daily, overall about a 50% increase since 2005.

In July 2015, the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre estimated nearly 1.3 million internally displaced Yemenis. Many more fled abroad.

UNHCR called displacement unprecedented, the highest level ever recorded. One in every 122 people is either a refugee, internally displaced or seeking asylum.

If they comprised the population of one country, it would be the world’s 24th largest. UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said: 

“We are witnessing a paradigm change, an unchecked slide into an era in which the scale of global forced displacement as well as the response required is now clearly dwarfing anything seen before.”

UNHCR said war in Syria is currently “the world’s single largest driver of (internal and external) displacement. An astonishing 42,500 people became refugees, internally displaced or asylum seekers 
daily on average last year - a four-fold increase since 2011.

“It is terrifying that on the one hand there is more and more impunity for those starting conflicts, and on the other there is seeming utter inability of the international community to work together to stop wars and build and preserve peace," Guterres explained.

One of the most visible consequences of imperial wars is the dramatic increase in refugees risking life and limb to reach safe havens in Western countries, mainly European ones. Other cross borders to neighboring nations.

Half are children, many too young to understand the turmoil affecting them. Numbers of desperate people grow while aid provided declines. The world’s most needy people are increasingly abandoned. 

Washington and rogue allies responsible for global conflicts and chaos don’t give a damn if they perish from starvation, untreated diseases or overall deprivation.

The price of imperial arrogance is horrendous human suffering, deprivation and death - millions of nameless, faceless people affected.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

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