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 Post subject: In the maze of immigration policies
Post Number:#1  PostPosted: 22 Dec 2011 10:31 
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In the maze of immigration policies

Against the background of the Norway massacre, Europe has become engrossed in discussions about immigration. Should or shouldn’t foreigners be allowed in Europe? And if they should, then under what conditions? What to do with those who are already there and on the European welfare, but refuse to live by the European laws?

For a long time, neither the public nor politicians realized that the Soviet model of international friendship could exist solely in certain political and economic conditions. The Soviet government harshly suppressed any manifestations of nationalism. And population mobility (and therefore points of contact of various nationalities) was very limited. Of course, national diasporas have long existed in large Russian cities. But these were small ethnic groups, rather than streams of immigrants. Representatives of national diasporas gladly positioned themselves as “Muscovite Georgians,” “Muscovite Armenians,” or “Muscovite Baku-natives.” They spent decades living in Russian society, studied in Russian schools and universities, read the same literature as Russians, and while maintaining some of the “sharp” attributes of national identity, they harmoniously (in terms of clothing, behavior and culture) blended into the international urban culture.

As paradoxical as it may be, the Soviet internationalism was significantly affected by the enforced communist atheism. The government suppressed religion in schools, universities and at work. Under atheist pressure, Orthodox Christians were not particularly demonstrative of their Christian crosses, and Muslims of their Islamic traditions and clothing.

With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the situation changed. Instead of sparse “national construction,” Russia has come to face mass migration. During the Soviet times, there was a popular belief that the Soviet Socialist republics were “feeding Moscow.” The life of the breakaway states has put everything in perspective. It became clear as to who was feeding whom. Masses of unemployed, poorly educated and low-income residents surged to Russia from the breakaway republics.

Authors of the new immigration policy concept are trying to find answers to the pressing questions. Do we need immigrants? If so, how many? If they are allowed into the country, then under what conditions? Some of the answers are obvious. Russia is experiencing a dangerous demographic collapse. Even our sluggish capitalism lacks manpower. Russia has already admitted 8 million visitors. In the next 10-15 years, specialists estimate, the country will need at least 8 million more newcomers. If Russia closes its gates, they say, we will be left without construction workers, drivers, porters, janitors and vendors.

The drama of the situation lies in the fact that scientists and specialists are emigrating from Russia to the Western states. These are professionals in the highest demand. In exchange, we are receiving uneducated people, without a profession, and often without the knowledge of the language. Urban dwellers leave Russia, and are usually replaced by rural residents. Russians easily fit into Europe’s daily, cultural and political context because they belong to a civilization that shares common Christian roots. Immigrants to Russia have a hard time adapting – and often, fail to adapt altogether.

While trying to find ways to overcome mutual estrangement, authors of this perspective talk about the necessity of “qualitative selection of newcomers.” But out of political correctness, they fail to mention that not only are we admitting uneducated people, but people with different civilizational roots. It is hard for them to fit into Russia’s cultural, ethical and everyday context. They often see this context not only as being foreign, but also hostile.

There are other contradictions as well. Russian capitalism, which idly feeds on oil and gas, does not need qualitative migration. At the current stage of development, which encompasses corruption and theft, it needs costless hands and wordless mouths, incapable of any social protest. This means that the new immigration concept will turn into verbal drills of the intellectuals, frightened by Breivik’s massacre in Oslo.

To this intellectual accompaniment, through corrupted channels, millions of registered and nonregistered migrants will flow to Russia. They will work at our construction sites, underground shops and markets for pennies. They will live in abandoned housing, bribe inspectors and flee from the local police. Thus, they will be accumulating resentment and depression. The tragedy is in the fact that they will not be resentful of the greedy Russian capitalism and the heavy-footed government. Instead, they will hold a grudge against the Russian world. They will reject this world. And we will, with horror, be following the chronicles of the recent events in such an incredibly happy country as Norway.

From RT: By Vyacheslav Kostikov - RT

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