WE continue to read more heartbreaking insight into the lives and backgrounds of those suffering people who died in that lorry. But let’s not fool ourselves. This is sadly just another instance, from the Med to the Channel, to crossing land borders on mainland Europe for all desperate people in transit, sometimes still far from Europe, their desired new home, as they are held, abused, trafficked, even enslaved, all in an attempt to gain a better life. And once they traverse Europe, what “camps” or “jungles” await them before, as now, they die in the process?

Naturally, the majority of us are outraged at what transpires. We react in various and immediate ways, especially politicians advocating the hard response: more guards at ports, more officers checking passports, better thermal equipment seeking hot spots, ie signs of human beings hiding away. Sounds good, since it shows a determination to protect borders whilst ensuring laws are implemented.

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In a few months time, we’ll hear from the same politicians about increased funding for “training” and a rise in “employment” without necessarily making connections. In the meantime, we shed tears at TV shots of fragile inflatables bobbing in dangerous waters, and the gut-wrenching sights of weeping families as they mourn their dead and missing.

But how soon will we forget, how soon will we move on? Until the next time that is, because no matter how many guards, patrol boats, or walls are built elsewhere and razor wire is unrolled, there will be a next time. And we hit the repeat button, again!

Every time we invade a country, we tend to leave a bigger mess behind than we found, but that’s the price required to ensure “democracy”. We’ve probably made a fortune selling arms and ammunition to that country and its leaders.

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What hypocrisy! We’ve helped create economic migrants since we failed to stabilise or even create an economy before we left.

In some instances, such as Libya, we officially give money to “keep” migrants from across Africa in local camps. Libya is still in a state of civil war, with no effective civilian government but war lords running the place. So where does that money go? Not on the migrants’ welfare. What hypocrisy!

We like cheap nail bars and like it or not, there’s an illegal market for cannabis, and thus the need for “workers”. Rightly, we pursue the people making money out of such chains of misery, desperation and transportation. But do we pursue the big corporations who don’t pay taxes? Do we pursue the wealthy individuals who are so wealthy they need to employ accountants to enable safe havens and off shore accounts?

Do we condemn business people who are clever enough to make billions elsewhere, possibly in some exploitative or illegal way, who then park their money here, or convert the same into tangible assets, like massive mansions? Do we welcome them and their money as entrepreneurs, not caring if they’ve left social, economic, political mayhem behind in their first country?

We know there is no quick fix, but if we don’t acknowledge that the UK immigration policy is not fit for purpose, if we don’t recognise the hypocrisy of what the UK Government and legislation does and doesn’t do, not much will change.

Such hypocrisy cannot be transferred from rUK government to the forthcoming independent Scotland. I have to believe that the framework of a fit-for-purpose immigration policy is just one such initiative that is under consideration as we prepare for independence.

Selma Rahman