German Chancellor Angela Merkel pushed back against critics of her open-door policy on refugees, saying those fleeing war zones shouldn’t have to bear the blame for the terrorist attacks in Paris.
Merkel’s comments during a Group of 20 summit in the Turkish coastal resort of Antalya Sunday were a rebuff to domestic opponents who cited the slaughter in the French capital as evidence that the chancellor must reverse her stance and turn people away. A statement by the Greek authorities that raised the possibility one of the assailants may have entered Europe posing as a refugee raised the pressure on Merkel still further.
She hit back in her only public comments on the first day of the two-day summit of world leaders that’s taking place in the shadow of the Paris attacks. Merkel called for a swift investigation into the motives behind the terrorist carnage to “find out who the perpetrators were, who’s behind them and what connections there were.”
“We owe it to the victims and their relatives, but also for the sake of our own security,” Merkel told reporters. “And we owe it to all the innocent refugees who are fleeing from war and terrorism.”
Merkel said she’d discuss efforts to resolve the Syrian conflict with Russian President Vladimir Putin late Sunday, then again in a one-on-one meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama on Monday, as she steps up her international diplomacy aimed at stemming the flow of refugees to Europe.
Luckily, not every politician in Germany is insane:
In Germany, some among her political allies stoked further tension over the projected arrival of some one million refugees this year alone. Friday night’s attack in Paris “changes everything,” Markus Soeder, a member of the Bavarian state government, said in a Twitter post.
It sure should. Meanwhile, with Paris still bleeding, Mutti Merkel’s cyber storm troopers know who the real enemy is:
Berlin police say they’ve raided 10 buildings in the German capital as part of a crackdown on far-right hate speech on social media networks. Police said Thursday that the morning raids involved 60 officers, who confiscated smartphones and computers as evidence, which are now being evaluated. They didn’t have any immediate information on arrests.
They say the raids are part of an ongoing investigation into hate speech spread over social media meant to incite people against asylum-seekers and refugee housing. Berlin’s top security official, Frank Henkel, says authorities “won’t turn away if racism or incitement is being spread on the Internet.” He says that the authorities alone can’t police hate speech online and appealed for social networks themselves to combat it more effectively.
Germany will tear itself apart over this.