Whenever anyone makes any criticism of Ireland’s excessively liberal immigration and asylum policy, there will always be a smug woke centrist or extreme leftist to try and snap you out of your ‘far right’ ignorance by employing ‘the Irish went everywhere’ argument.
However, these people aren’t comparing like with like. Firstly, ever since they phased out accepting immigrants off the boats at Ellis Island in the early to mid to twentieth century the Irish have had to apply from within Ireland to gain entry to the USA. And even during the relative open door policy prior to that , many people were put back on the boat to Ireland for a variety of reasons from poor health to even being what they referred to back then as simple minded. I can think of quite a few radical left and woke Irish politicians that wouldn’t have passed that test.
Since then, those who apply legally to enter the US are rigorously screened and the US government are able to match the level and type of immigrants they require with the needs of their economy as well as internal resource constraints, if they so wish. There is a similarly strict regime with regards emigrating to Australia and both these countries can refuse us entry before we’ve even boarded a plane. These processes are in no ways comparable to the large numbers of so called asylum seekers turning up at Dublin airport having purposely discarded their travel documents and identification.
Now, while most of Ireland’s EU immigrants are hardworking and have contributed much to Ireland, EU rules mean we have no powers to vet and restrict criminals, suspected terrorists, welfare tourists or other dangerous individuals from across the EU. There were no checks or vetting done with regards to the man facing trial accused of Aisling Murphy’s murder. As a Slovak national her alleged killer had the automatic right to be in Ireland. The Irish don’t have the automatic right to be in the countries we primarily migrate to, with the exception of the UK – and there are very understandable reasons for that exception.
The Irish have special residency status in Britain as the British do in Ireland. Legally, for all intents and purposes the Irish and British are not viewed as immigrants on each other’s respective island. Ireland and Britain operate what is known as the Common Travel Area which allows for free movement across these islands owing to the fact that the two islands were in full political union for over two hundred years and a portion of the island remains so. Under British law, the 1949 Ireland Act, the Irish aren’t even deemed foreign within Britain. How could we be when such a large proportion of Britons have a degree of Irish ancestry? The Irish and the British have inextricable ties of shared culture, not ignoring the differences, and overlapping ancestry and close family links between the English, Irish, Scots and Welsh. I myself am proudly both Irish and British with roots and ancestry across several nations of our islands. I’ve probably been accurately referred to as a ‘West-Brit’ even far more times even than the Editor of Gript Media.
Now, when it comes to the protests at the asylum centre at the East Wall or the fact that in recent years Ireland has had very high levels of immigration from across Africa and the wider Muslim world, it is possible to have valid concerns that have nothing to do with racism, opposing all immigration or believing that all Muslims are incompatible with living in the west.
However, allowing in very large numbers of young men that it’s impossible to fully vet, mostly from countries where Islamic extremism is very widespread and where women and religious minorities are often treated appallingly is very irresponsible. Can those who defend our ultra-liberal immigration system please tell me how you can have a high degree of unvetted Islamic immigration from countries where support for Sharia law and its concomitant opposition to liberal democracy is common and avoid problems and tensions?
This type of immigration is in no ways comparable to the Irish moving to the wider English speaking world to integrate with people they have much in common.
I’m not opposed to all immigration or even all Muslim immigration and I utterly oppose decent individual Muslims being abused in any way. I have worked in both Britain and Ireland alongside people from all over the world including many decent Africans, Asians and genuinely moderate Muslims who contribute positively to our societies. I also support taking in a manageable number of persecuted Christians, genuine moderate Muslims and ex Muslims from Africa, the Middle East and Asia.
I have a friend who is a former asylum seeker and is now an Irish citizen and a credit to the country. This friend has agreed with me that Ireland needs to be very rigorous regarding what people his adopted country permits entry. He came here to get away from Islamists.
However, he lived in a direct provision centre and out of concern for his own safety had to hide that he was an ex-Muslim from some Muslim asylum seekers he knew to be Islamists, as apostasy is viewed as a capital offence in many Muslim countries. If you are still convinced that mass, unvetted immigration from the Muslim world comes with no risks and that it’s “Islamophobic” to have any concerns, please note that as of 2017, Britain had over 40,000 on jihadi watchlists according to UK intelligence agencies. That was the year of the Manchester arena bombing.
The terrorist suicide bomber who the investigation identified as having committed that atrocity, Salman Abedi, was an asylum seeker as was one of the first London Bridge terror attackers Rachid Redhouane, who lived in Dublin for a period of time.
Mass, unvetted immigration from the Muslim world has also brought to Ireland the very serious issue of actual hate speech that has been preached by a senior Islamic cleric linked to Dublin’s Clonskeagh mosque which has been well documented by the blogger and Sunday Times columnist Mark Humphrys.
Clonskeagh mosque hosted the preacher Yusuf Al Qaradawi there for years. He was a senior Islamic cleric linked to the extremist Muslim Brotherhood. He openly preached that death for gays and ex-Muslims was the correct punishment in a sharia compliant society that he hoped to see spread across the planet. He also supported suicide attacks against Israeli civilians. Irish media darling Ibrahim Halawa was on social media mourning his death recently. The Irish media were quite silent about Halawa’s adoration for the deceased hate preacher who was eventually banned from Ireland and the UK. Instead, they were busy whipping up outrage over a Catholic priest holding traditional Catholic views on homosexuality that are quite liberal ,tolerant, and legal when compared to the late Al Qaradawi’s preference to put gay people to the sword.
I really don’t see how those Muslims who support or are sympathetic to Islamic extremists like Yusuf Al Qaradawi have anything positive to offer Ireland or the UK. The lax immigration policies of both countries guarantee that for every decent moderate Muslim who doesn’t subscribe to Sharia law, we also will inevitably get plenty who support or are sympathetic to various strains of Islamism. This has already led to what former senior British Labour party politician Trevor Phillips described in Britain as a ‘nation within a nation’ and you can’t credibly accuse a black British politician with the liberal-left credentials of Trevor Philips of being ‘far right.’ Saying that, we live in such insane times that many people actually have. If we keep going at this rate, nearly everyone will be a Nazi by this time next year. AntiFa won’t know where to start.
A highly regulated immigration system that guarantees we only get law abiding immigrants who respect liberal democracy and want to work hard and integrate, regardless of their colour or creed, is the best way to combat xenophobia and racism. Mass unvetted immigration on the other hand allows criminals, sex pests and various strains of Islamic extremism to take root in society. All of which are well embedded in the west. This leads many people, ignorantly, but somewhat understandably, looking on certain types of immigrants with a degree of suspicion. Both Ireland and Britain have wonderful people of all colours, ethnicities & creeds, but we need to vet people, we need to be choosey and we also need to match levels of immigration with resource constraints.
There’s nothing “far right” about any of that. Only decades ago that’s how most western countries and most mainstream political parties, including most of the left, approached immigration.