The Great migration debate
‘Fortress Europe is an interesting and valuable resource
because it shows the geographic and physical reality of people’s journeys, and the risk they face.’
‘Fortress Europe is an interesting and valuable resource because it shows the geographic and physical reality of people’s journeys, and the risk they face.’
Activist distribute posters around Thessaloniki
July 2020 © Fortress Europe
Total reading time: 3-4 hours
SHOULD WE CLOSE THE BORDERS? Or should we welcome all refugees? Should we transfer more migrants to the West from Greece? And if yes, which ones?
These questions, simplistic as they may seem, have taken centre stage in European politics. They formed the heart of the Brexit, separated Eastern and Western EU countries and political parties within them. And still, despite their importance, they often feel so abstract, unreal and far away.
WHAT IS THIS WEBSITE?
On the following pages, I record a 3-week journey I made through Greece in March 2020, retracing migration routes. In the prologue and chapters II and IV you will read detailed reconstructions of real border crossings by migrants I met. What does such a journey look like?
The rest of the chapters cover my own travels, combined with the necessary basics of European asylum policies. Visiting refugee camps, urban migrant hideouts and facilities, and the Northern Greek border, the website paints a picture of how asylum seekers travel into Europe and the laws and policies that guide their way.
WHY SHOULD I READ THIS?
The big refugee debate has had a massive influence on all other EU politics, not the least the perceived credibility of the institution itself. I personally haven’t come across any literature that could explain in an accessible and entertaining way what the fuzz is all about. Through stories and photos, this website will give you not only the factual tools and questions to reflect on, but also the empathy to start to understand the debate and hopefully bring it to a next level in your own life.
HOW TO USE THIS WEBSITE?
This website is more than an entertaining story, although it’s already great if you treat it like that. However, it is meant to foster debate. Think about the questions posed during each chapter and click on the links to develop your own understanding. And then, most importantly, take it out there. Look beyond stereotypes, take a step away from the ‘side’ you are on and discuss what you read!