Reversing views on refugees

Turned upside down this poem tells a different story.


They have no need of our help
So do not tell me
These haggard faces could belong to you or me
Should life have dealt a different hand
We need to see them for who they really are
Chancers and scroungers
Layabouts and loungers
With bombs up their sleeves
Cut-throats and thieves
They are not
Welcome here
We should make them
Go back to where they came from
They cannot
Share our food
Share our homes
Share our countries
Instead let us
Build a wall to keep them out
It is not okay to say
These are people just like us
A place should only belong to those who are born there
Do not be so stupid to think that
The world can be looked at another way

(now read from bottom to top)


  1. Klik Bate

     /  28th December 2016


    Yet when played backwards, the video clip in this story tells exactly the SAME story 😡

    • Same with this article, albeit from a different angle:

      Wafaa Al Ashram says moving to Dunedin after escaping war-torn Syria is the best thing that has ever happened to her.
      Mrs Al Ashram is one of 187 refugees who have arrived in Dunedin this year after the city was chosen as a resettlement location.

      Yesterday, she and her son Ahmad Alhamwi* reflected on their first seven months in the city and she was beaming when asked what she thought of her new home.

      “I think coming to Dunedin is the best thing that has happened to me in my life.”

      She had made a lot of friends and connected with her neighbours, who she shared Syrian cuisine with.

      She was thankful for the welcome she had received and wished everyone in the city a merry Christmas.

      Despite Christmas not being part of the Muslim tradition, it was not new to her as it was celebrated by the significant Christian populations back home in Damascus and in Lebanon, where she escaped to from Syria.

      “During Christmas I used to go to my Christian friends and neighbours and wish them a joyful season.

      “People here understand and respect our traditions, so in a reciprocal way we understand and respect their traditions, as well.”

      She believed that the resettlement of refugees had been a success.

      “The Dunedin community has been very welcoming to families, neighbours have made connections,” Ms Burger said.

      The refugees were becoming increasingly involved in the community and added cultural vibrancy to the city.

      • Klik Bate

         /  28th December 2016

        You need to wait a little PG…..just give them time.

        • If you keep wishing for the worst you may eventually get it. I’d rather look for better.

          • Klik Bate

             /  28th December 2016

          • Missy

             /  28th December 2016

            Tell me Pete, should the German man that was set on fire, or those that lost loved ones in the Berlin attack, or the women who were assaulted last New Years Eve, or maybe the families of the children who have been sexually assaulted and raped by refugees look for better? or did they just keep wishing for the worst?

      • Time, yes, and numbers, PG, numbers are important.

        Because then this happens . . .

        • Blazer

           /  28th December 2016

          the law is the law!Anecdotes are not compelling.You can cherry pick them to bolster any argument,right or left.Solve the muslim refugee problem by not bombing their homelands.Let them kill each other if they wish,and forget about oil and pipelines.

  2. I’m afraid that to me the turned around poem oversimplifies the reality being faced by the citizens of the host countries where large numbers of “refugees” have entered their nation. While the scale of the incoming “refugees” present assimilation/integration problems enough, it’s the status of the up to 60% (hundreds of thousands) of other illegal and economic migrants accompanying them who are causing resentment among native populations and, sadly, genuine refugees are lumped in with them.

    “A tolerance for illegal as well as legal immigration has become a European principle in recent years. But over the last 12 months that attitude has been turbo-charged. European leaders have been searching for a rationale for their madness. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s first justification for opening the doors of Europe lay in the minority of arrivals fleeing Syria. But as a far larger number of economic migrants arrived from across Africa, the Middle East and Far East, the rationale changed. Instead it became a wonderful opportunity for an ‘ageing continent’ to acquire a new influx of workers; a new generation to keep us all in the style to which we have become accustomed.”

    Integration difficulties and friction with local people, especially when large numbers of migrants like those that occurred in Europe last year were to be expected. Productive wraparound support for the incomers is necessarily compromised due to the sheer scale of migration. The impact of this on incoming youth given their disadvantage, their lack of language, isolation and apartness means chances of anti-social and criminal behaviour increase.

    “Almost nobody asks why this position (“new workers”) was adopted at a time when youth unemployment rates in much of Europe are hovering around 50 per cent. But today even the European Commission admits that most of the people who came to Europe last year should not be here. In January, the Commission’s vice-president Frans Timmermans admitted that at least 60 per cent of recent arrivals were economic migrants, not asylum seekers. Not Syrians fleeing a war prolonged by Turkey and all the other Muslim states of the Middle East, but people who, in Timmermans’s words, ‘have no reason to apply for refugee status’.

    Native populations feel they’re being taken for a ride. In liberal Sweden, the interior minister, Anders Ygeman, admitted that of the 163,000 people to whom the country opened its arms last year, at least 80,000 are fake asylum seekers in need of deporting. EU commissioner Frans Timmerman says that 60% of migrants “have no reason to apply for refugee status”.

    This is a serious problem. No amount of poetry and good intentions can mitigate this situation. Only committed action and expulsion of illegal migrants might achieve a situation where genuine refugees are accepted and assimilated. No sign that expulsion is happening or will happen, but every sign that the worst of the unassimilated, dispossessed and radicalised religious maniacs have the freedom the host country offers them to terrorise, murder and maim at will.

  3. Blazer

     /  28th December 2016

    Inequality is the cause.

    • Do you mean that a host country should redistribute assets and services of both government and private citizenry to accommodate anyone who deems they need sanctuary? Or is this, perhaps just a general sweeping statement with no relationship to an unprecedented and tremendously complicated situation?

      • Blazer

         /  28th December 2016

        No I mean reforming the capitalist system of trying to monopolise resources.The refugees both economic and displaced would not leave their own countries if they controlled their own resources.

        • Pure Marxist Communism rules eh Blazer. Only in your dreams. People own the rewards of their own production and can decide how it is distributed. It is called freedom not Capitalism.

        • It works this way here. We’ve worked hard in this country. We’ve lost tens of thousands of mostly young men in wars. We’ve arrived at a certain place because we fought prejudice on all fronts. We’ve worked all hours under the sun to give our families a little pleasure in amongst the drudgery of a minimum of a 40 hour week and we pay nearly half our salary to a government to act on our behalf of our joint interests. If we’re lucky we get 4 weeks holiday a year. Nobody gave the vast majority of us even a little hand up. Everything we’ve got we worked for and we judge each other on merit. Your Buddhist is as good as your atheist. You’re down on your luck we give you a house, we pay for it, we buy your food, we clothe, educate and keep you healthy. We pay to bring up your kids ( as many as you like), if you’re unable to.

          Even though it’s not enshrined in a constitution I’d suggest most of us expect one thing of any migrant or refugee who comes here. Fit in and regard us all as equals and you’re home and hosed. You’re no better than me and I’m certainly not better than you, but I am heavily invested in the future of my children and their future based on generations of investment in and love for this awesome country you’re lucky enough to come to. Your walk here is how you will be judged. Your duty to your God shall not come before the law of this land.

          • Blazer

             /  28th December 2016

            can’t argue with too much there Trav,apart from the fact that I do not regard property speculation as productive ‘work’.

  4. Brown

     /  28th December 2016

    “These are people just like us.”

    No, huge numbers are not if you measure them by the standards of Western Civilisation.

    “Despite Christmas not being part of the Muslim tradition, it was not new to her as it was celebrated by the significant Christian populations back home in Damascus and in Lebanon, where she escaped to from Syria.”

    Stopped taking her seriously her about here. Muslims have made life so dangerous for Christians in the Middle East, especially since the Arab Spring, that Christianity is now mainly notable for its absence.

    • Blazer

       /  28th December 2016

      Alot of irony here Brown…’ Muslims have made life so dangerous for Christians in the Middle East, especially since the Arab Spring,’……got rather dangerous for muslims too ..Brown…a western inspired and funded uprising.Wheres BP and Exxon in all of this!

  5. Alan Wilkinson

     /  28th December 2016

    Why import people who believe stupid and dangerous things?

    That is the unanswered question.

  6. Missy

     /  28th December 2016

    Pete, I am sorry, I cannot share your fluffy view of refugees based on the ‘refugees’ I have witnessed in Europe.

    Most are young men – many of which are not from countries at war.

    Since the arrival of these ‘refugees’ in Europe there has been a reported increase in sexual assaults on both women and children, there has been an increase in violence in port cities and at train stations – notable was before the closure of the Jungle in Calais there were nightly attacks against motorists, attempted armed hijackings, and a number of serious injuries.

    There has been an increase in terrorist attacks and planned attacks since the mass arrival of these ‘refugees’.

    There has been a more concerted and organised radicalisation programme taking place in Europe since the arrival of these ‘refugees’.

    What is happening in Europe is the reality of mass migration of ‘refugees’ that do not share the values of equality, freedom, and respect that we in the West hold dear.

    Be as warm and fluffy as you like, but remember, the more that arrive the higher the probability of the same issues becoming a reality in New Zealand.

    • Blazer

       /  28th December 2016

      talk about ‘fluffy’….did you lift this directly from a ‘Dubbya’….speech…’the values of equality, freedom, and respect that we in the West hold dear. ‘

      • Blazer, why not address the responses from Missy, myself and others. Your one-liners do you and those you apparently champion, no favours in the face of these grave problems. Europe is failing to stem unprecedented mass, illegal migration from North Africa and the East. EU spokesmen mostly speak weasel words while the situation becomes graver by the day. You can’t address it with your “fluffy”, your “Dubbya” and meaningless sound bites of no substance. It demeans you and it demeans genuine refugees.

        Illegal migration is impacting on a level hitherto unseen in the West. How would you honestly respond were you living in Italy, Sweden or Germany? I don’t see you as particularly flexible. Imagine how you’d feel if NZ and your little part of Aotearoa were being swamped on the scale Europe has been with illegal migrants? How would you apportion our resources? Which of our children would you deny housing & health services, or deny educational advancement to accommodate the newcomers? I suggest that the “rich pricks” you despise will be quite okay thanks. They can go private and lock themselves behind high walls and gilt-edged privilege. It’s always the already poor, already disenfranchised and opportunity-compromised who suffer within the host nation. Would you be happy divvying up our limited resources, supplying wraparound health, language services, schooling, benefits and jobs while your own kids were told to wait patiently?

        It’s evident many in Europe are done with the EU placing illegal, undocumented economic migrants amongst genuine refugees in their communities. Countries like Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain that have mass unemployment are already among the poorer nations of their federation. Tell me how these undocumented illegals help their host societies in any way. This is not a few kebab shopkeepers or Afghan tailors setting up quaint and colourful businesses that add to a society. They’re more often grossly educated, religiously unreformed and dogmatic, people simply looking for a better life without the skills or impetus to assimilate and who want to bring their families in in due course.

        Integration attempts on this scale come at significant cost and sacrifice to locals. When the base nature of some of the illegals comes to the fore – when some are exposed as criminals, and even worse radicals and terrorists who gleefully and ignorantly murder their generous hosts in theaters, markets and seaside strands – patience runs out.

        Do you want the West to be even more dominated by the right and reactionaries?

        • Conspiratoor

           /  28th December 2016

          Well said Trav but the message will be lost on him. Reasoned argument doesn’t square with his MO. Cheers,c

          • Blazer

             /  28th December 2016

            I do hope you are not attacking the…messenger….because ,that would make you a…hypocrite…wouldn’t it….Con?

        • Blazer

           /  28th December 2016

          You ,Missy and others wilfully avoid the cause of these mass migrations.You cannot seem to accept the role western nations,particularly the U.S and their venal corporations play.They fan the flames of extremism,that is their M.O .and people like yourself soak up one eyed propaganda spread by the MSM.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  28th December 2016

            If you want to look for those who fan the flames of extremism you don’t need to look much further than the oil despots, mad mullahs of Islam and extremist Jews and their supporters. The Muslim world is full of corrupt and despotic governments funding every kind of murderous rampage. Companies that want to operate there have no choice but to comply with their corrupt systems. Turkey more or less functioned while Ataturk’s separation of religion and state survived but now it has joined the rest of the Muslim catastrophe where brute force violence and power is the ruling paradigm for conflict resolution.

        • should be “grossly UNeducated” of course

    • Missy, I’m aware of serious issues in Europe with refugees and immigrants, and those who are illegal pose the biggest problems.

      But trying to frame the issues around ‘here’s the worst example this week’ won’t help the situation, I think it’s likely to make things worse if anything.

      And we don’t have anywhere near the same issues in New Zealand. I’m confident our Immigration Service tries hard to ensure we don’t get dangerous immigrants coming here.

      Some people keep saying ‘just wait until we get our second terrorist attack here’ (the first was not done by immigrants nor was religion involved) – and I’m sure those who think they might like to cause more tension here will be aware of the trouble they can cause by succeeding with that,

      But even if (probably when) that happens we can’t blame all immigrants and inter or deport them – I have a couple of Aunties who came here 80+ years ago who would probably think that’s a bit of an unfair over reaction.

      Immigration has been happening for a very long time around the world and can’t just be switched off. So I think the best thing we can do is deal with what we have as safely and respectfully as we can rather than keep trying to fuel discord and terrorism with ‘the sky is falling’ rhetoric.

      The example of what happened in Germany was crap, but a million or so refugees and immigrants weren’t responsible for that.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  28th December 2016

        Islam is a crap religion because it advocates violence and world domination. We don’t want it here in any form that even tolerates that.

        • The religion doesn’t advocate that. Some people use the religion to advocate it.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  28th December 2016


            • Lack of evidence – that one and a half billion people aren’t advocating death and world domination.

              I have no empathy for Islam as a religion but I think that people have a right to believe what they want as long as they don’t inflict those beliefs on others.

              I don’t agree with the what the Catholic Church advocates about contraception – in some ways it’s quite dangerous – but I won’t argue against Catholics going to church.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  28th December 2016

              IMO, there’s plenty of evidence that they do inflict their beliefs on others and use violence to do so. Had they the means to impose their beliefs on the world via violence I think there is no doubt most Muslims would acquiesce.

      • Here in NZ with our limited refugee quota and very difficult points based immigration system we’re in a kind of bubble. We cannot compare our apples with the pears of Europe.

        Pete – as far as the “inflicting of religion” on others, Islam is in a class of it’s own. You cannot compare the Catholic stance on contraception with Islamic doctrine. Contraception disapproval is little more than lip service within Catholicism, and I’ve never heard them decrying any other faith for practicing birth control. Educated and free-thinking Muslims are many(although I find it oxymoronic to describe anyone vaguely adherent to the Islamic faith as free thinking). Why are they hiding their reason, their tolerance and incisiveness? Why are they not to the fore denouncing the terror that Pan-Islamists cause. Shia, Sunni, Wahaabi etc. Where are the leaders of these sects? Muslims cannot profess to struggling with faith let alone become apostate for fear of having fatwā issued against them. Therefore there is an intellectual dishonesty. Think on Salman Rushdie, the Danish cartoonist, Charlie Hebdo. Anyone who mocks Allah, anyone who depicts him is fair game for murder. There is no doubt that increasingly we in the West are losing our right to free speech in this area. It seems many leaders are more concerned at the effect of terrorism on “peaceful” Muslims than they are about stopping the flow of undocumented migrants and wiping out the zealous ignorance that many bring with them.