REFUGEES

September 9, 2016

Dear Reader,

Greetings and Good Day,

Was the Great flood the origin of humanity and its return? 1

Did the flood cause the initial humanitarian crisis and consequently generated the first refugees?

While the answers to above are unknown, it is proven that the discovery of Peking man in 1927, made it evident that ancient human-like creatures with an early Paleolithic culture had dwell-ed in China…. Until recently, archaeologists believed that the earliest Neolithic farming villages (the Yang Shao culture) appeared in the Yellow River valley about 4500 B.C.

Now a series of newly discovered sites has pushed back the Neolithic Age in China to 6500 B.C. The evidence indicates that China’s Neolithic culture, which cultivated millet and domesticated the pig, originated independently from that in the Near East.

China proper is a vast watershed drained by three river systems that rise close together on the high Tibetan plateau and flow eastward to the Pacific. Three mountain systems also rise in the west, diminishing in altitude as they slope eastward between the river systems. The Yellow River (Huang Ho), traditionally known as “China’s Sorrow” because of the misery caused by its Periodic flooding traverses the North China plain is most likely the cause of cyclical displacement of communities.  http://history-world.org/a_brief_history_of_china.htm

However we are also told by the Roman historian Pompeius Trogus (1st century BC), a near contemporary of Virgil, about a sinister web of court intrigue in which the new king Pygmalion of Tyre (brother of Dido) slays the chief priest Acharbas (husband of Dido), which causes the Queen Elissa (Dido) along with some nobles to flee the city of Tyre westward in a fleet of ships carrying royal gold. At Cyprus, four score temple maidens were taken aboard the ships. Then her fleet continues on, landing in North Africa to found Carthage.  Perhaps this caused the first internally displaced crisis that led to the local settler’s crisis of UTICA. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Carthage

Since then, a long series of events happened and determined many conflicts, which caused displacements, exodus, and established refugees and new cities or worlds. Middle Age expeditions roamed the land and the seas, and the first corps dedicated to aid started to appear.

Tragic humanitarian crisis developed along different ages, up to the concert of EUROPE or the Congress of Vienna, passing by the battle of Solferino in 1859, and during WW1 and WW2 that obliged many people to displace and seek refuge. And after this in 1947 during the partition of India, in 1948 and 1967 in the Middle East, in 1955 in Vietnam, in 1959 in Rwanda, in 1967 in Biafra, in 1975 in Lebanon, in 1978 in Afghanistan, in 1985 in Laos, in 1984 in Ethiopia, in 1988 in Honduras,  in 1991 in Iraq and in former Yugoslavia, in 1994/5 in the great lakes, in 2003 in Iraq, in 2010 in Haiti, in 2011 in Syria, etc…

In leaving the old world and getting to our modern era, It is difficult to be precise about which is the world’s oldest refugee camp of our known world.  However one of the oldest camps is Cooper’s Camp in West Bengal, India, that dates since the partition. http://ioc.sagepub.com/content/44/1/53.extract

So what is a refugee camp? A refugee camp is a temporary settlement built to receive refugees and people in refugee-like situations. Refugee camps usually accommodate displaced persons who have fled from neighboring countries, but there are also camps for internally displaced persons…. Refugee camps generally develop in an impromptu fashion with the aim of meeting basic human needs for only a short time. Facilities that make a camp look or feel more permanent are often prohibited by host country governments. If the return of refugees is prevented, often by civil war, a humanitarian crisis can result or continue. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Refugee_camp

Of the ten largest documented refugee camps in the world, 7 are in Africa, 2 in the Middle East and one in India. http://www.borgenmagazine.com/ten-largest-refugee-camps-world/

In the specifics, surrounding the small town of Dadaab, Kenya, is one of the oldest and largest refugee camps in the world, it turned 20, five years ago. This camp regularly had airdropped onto its field, bundles of shelters and mosquito nets, and other relief supplies and humanitarian aid for the stranded people. http://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2011/04/the-worlds-largest-refugee-camp-turns-20/100046/

Through its evolution, humanitarian aid to refugees caused by natural disasters or international crisis was regulated by some major milestones such as the GENEVA conventions and their additional protocols, https://www.icrc.org/eng/assets/files/publications/icrc-002-0368.pdf

And by humanitarian principles https://docs.unocha.org/sites/dms/Documents/OOM-humanitarianprinciples_eng_June12.pdf

But one of the most important humanitarian interventions is the one that happened during the crisis in Rwanda in 1994, as it was subject to heavy scrutiny and was followed by many studies. https://www.oecd.org/countries/rwanda/50189495.pdf

Which brought up Anglo sphere reviews in standards called the “Humanitarian Charter and minimum standard for Disaster response (Sphere 2000) “https://www.odi.org/sites/odi.org.uk/files/odi-assets/publications-opinion-files/176.pdf 

in professionalization requirements, http://www.elrha.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/Professionalising_the_humanitarian_sector.pdf

and in speaking out case studies made within the MSF ( Medecins sans Frontiere) modus-operandi  http://speakingout.msf.org/en/the-violence-of-the-new-rwandan-regime

But also important reflections conducted by the ICRC (International Committee of the Red Cross), on the interpretation of humanitarian principles within the conflicting views of several actors, and in presence of political scuttling. The ambitions of the sector have grown to include not just the effects but also the causes of crises. https://www.icrc.org/en/international-review/article/applying-humanitarian-principles-reflecting-experience-international

http://blogs.icrc.org/law-and-policy/2016/04/15/international-review-principles-guiding-humanitarian-action/

While humanitarian aid is playing a fundamental role now in global governance, if we look at the projection of demographics into the mid of the 21st century, we realize that one third increase will be the trajectory of citizens.

So learning from differing experiences from the flow of emigrants to the Canaries in 2006 https://www.ipinst.org/2016/05/lessons-from-the-cayucos-crisis  and from the present day European theater emigrants crisis https://www.google.com/search?q=1996+refugees&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-b-ab  where a clear cut necessity emerges of a different thinking to bridge the gap for needs and regulations vis a’ vis the refugees willing to establish or simply transit by a certain geographic zone. https://www.ipinst.org/2016/06/imagination-gap-migration#5

And considering the persisting volatile environment on the global scale http://www.atlanticcouncil.org/publications/reports/the-global-system-on-the-brink-pathways-toward-a-new-normal  one can only think that the humanitarian aid will only flourish.

But how can this humanitarian aid evolve in an arid land, where diversification of economies is more a political challenge, http://www.lcps-lebanon.org/publication.php?id=286  or when refugees do not return to their homeland for a reason or another?

In the specifics where the return of refugees is not rendered possible for different reasons, then, we can talk about refugee’s economies, and here we need to demystify some assumptions. Refugees are commonly thought to be, economically isolated and homogeneous. They are also considered a burden, dependent and technologically illiterate and in-savvy. Yet this is not the case as demonstrated by the study of Alexander Betts that rotates around Rethinking assumptions. https://www.rsc.ox.ac.uk/refugeeeconomies

Yet when we concentrate on the Middle East and North Africa, where about 20 million refugees exist, then we need to take into consideration other factors, more local, http://www.lawschool.cornell.edu/international/clarke-initiative/upload/Beyond-Survival-Conference-Proceedings-2.pdf  tackling the livelihoods, and the system of daily lives.

More in particular and looking with an optical microscope lenses , one country is subjected to a major paralysis on this regard, be it because of the percentage of refugees per inhabitant or for the percentage of total consumers per infrastructure,  and this is Lebanon.

But many of Lebanon’s scars are self-inflicted as shown in the study of Crisis Group https://www.crisisgroup.org/middle-east-north-africa/eastern-mediterranean/lebanon/lebanon-s-self-defeating-survival-strategies

And/ or in the impact of Lebanon’s policy on the Syrian refugees  http://cskc.daleel-madani.org/resource/formal-informality-brokering-mechanisms-and-illegality-impact-lebanese-state%E2%80%99s-policies  and what emerges from profiling the children living on the streets of Lebanon, where the estimated number of SBC ‘s in the 18 Districts of LEBANON is approximately 1510 .  http://www.unicef.org/lebanon/resources_9943.htm

So before debating the exact terminology of refugee and respective rights, in Lebanon, we need to realize that Lebanon also has a political cartel in governance and two major problems facing its communities, the financial situation and the humanitarian aid.

If it is true that the Lebanese public debt can be tackled through policies set by governments, it is also true that the Syrian refugees thought to be hindering public life in Lebanon, can have their presence by contrast, addressed through initiative taken by private entrepreneurs.

In an imperfect world, people in need of intervention on yearly basis are recorded to be by the millions, be this for natural disasters or for local conflicts, and the idea is that a major start up need to be thought to effectively bridge the gap in creative thinking about refugees.

Considering the variety of talents accounted for, that is useful for the private industry in many different ways. And having at disposal so much energies and potentials, an intelligent scheme to exploit all assets, none to be left out, should be put in place, to create a start up that operates on global and multinational scale.

The Lebanese start up to be called Refugees, and financed by private investment ( consortium between bankers, cement factories, steel industries, telecom and hi-tech researchers, medics, innovators, etc..) can rely on gathering the existing human power on a first stage, to manufacture building material,  transportation means all labeled on purpose. Other items such as bicycles, charts, vendor’s banquets,  washing stations, sun energy platforms, wind wheels or farms , etc….  can be outsourced and positioned beforehand in regional theaters together to heavy lift vehicles and cargo planes, ready for immediate emergency needs.

All this will generate profit when you supply the operations of global humanitarian aid with human and logistic resources. The start up one day can team up with others established such as Facebook, Tesla, Chinese Steel Corporation, Vodafone, AIR PARTNER, etc..

Although some private things already exist but these are not enough at all, http://www.smartcompany.com.au/entrepreneurs/70724-how-startups-and-entrepreneurs-are-working-to-make-life-easier-for-refugees-around-the-world/

Let us just think about how come there is always collusion between public funds and humanitarian delivery?

Isn’t it because there is not enough private investment out there?

1 http://www.ancient-origins.net/human-origins-science-religions/evidence-great-flood-real-or-myth-part-i-005340?page=0%2C1

For further literature about refugees refer to

http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6a6c98.html

This blog is dedicated to all refugees worldwide.

Thank You ,