Last time I looked, Poland wasn’t the First Safe Country for any African country. Nor any Middle Eastern one. It is, however, First Safe Country for Ukraine, so in accordance with the relevant international treaty that is actually signed up to by our nations, namely the Dublin Accord, (as opposed to making new laws up as you go along, which is what some leaders in the EU, notably Merkel, have been doing) it accepts refugees from that country, and has done so far in excess of its duty, with about a million Ukrainians having benefited from an open door to Poland. And this in spite of Ukrainians having been responsible for some of the worst massacres against Poles in living memory. They are not exactly natural allies. In the main Ukrainians get on OK, and are popular, but there are those who need to keep their views to themselves as they would be quickly excoriated if they expressed Banderista tendencies in Poland. As long as they treat the Poles as friends, it is reciprocated.
As far as economic migrants are concerned there is no point in accepting these from Africa in a big lump but for sure there might be some who have skills we need, and indeed you do see Africans around, and I have been to a fine Nigerian doctor here in Warsaw, probably some of the people from Poland reading this post know who I mean, I will not embarrass him by naming him but there are several African doctors here and people like this man will always have an open door to Poland.
But they are also needed by their home countries, so accepting Africa’s best is not necessarily a brilliant moral high ground either. Still, I do believe in freedom of movement for those who have talent and hard work. It is up to them, after that, what they do for their country of origin. On the one hand it seems unfair to drain the best brains from Nigeria, but on the other hand we can expect that among 200 million there will be some more with brains who would like to solve the considerable problems that country still has. Maybe a partnership between them and their countrymen and tribesmen resident in Europe and America will enable them to do more. I only hope the best for the Nigeria people as any African nation.
Now I should say clearly one more thing. Poland is not interested in allowing armies in. When Ukrainians come, we see couples, families, and singles of both sexes. When North Africans come we see men who ought to be fighting for their homes, not leaving women and children behind to fight us for our spaces, which they will go on to ruin because the sort of people who cannot make their own country right cannot make ours right either.
We’ve been told by al-Baghdadi and his baggy buddies that the refugee stream will contain trained jihadis but so far this threat doesn’t seem to have been taken seriously enough in Europe. I get “innocent till proven guilty” but when you consider that the people who have been barging into Europe have already broken multiple laws to get here and linked themselves up with gangs on insalubrious people, I think we would be justified in suspending that grand maxim of jurisprudence in the interests of the safety of those we already have in our part of the world who live peaceably and pay their taxes.
I will admit that it is a major headscratch to know how to distinguish jihadies from ordinary people, it is not like they walk around with “I’m a jihadi” written on their faces (they don’t do tattoos, that’s one thing I actually like about them), but the most serious agents are of course going to have like a “dispensation” to behave in a non-Islamic manner to avoid suspicion. Just because someone has a drink with you and enjoys a ham sandwich and is nowhere near the Masjid on a Friday night – it’s no guarantee, I’m afraid. On the other hand there are plenty in the Masjid who wouldn’t hurt a fly, and you can’t tell for sure who they are, either.
People used to say that Russians were like matryoshka dolls, with different levels that you peel off to get to the next one, but in my experience, Russians are “Israelites in whom there is no guile” in comparison with the sons of the desert. And Uighurs, I have heard it said, are like onions.
If people genuinely fleeing conflict need help in the First Safe Country for sure Poland will send aid commensurate with its economy and in accordance with what the law intends and not Mrs Merkel and her great solo performance of holiday help. Poland has footed its share of the bill for measures undertaken both in Turkey and in Greece. And Greece itself is only First Safe Country if you say that Turkey is unsafe. I think the jury may well be out on that one.