author: refugee baher
Piraeus port. Yesterday
-Afghanistan? You can’t go through.
I show them a photograph depicting the evacuation of Eidomeni .
There is no answer. Only rage.
They can’t believe it’s true. Even their desparation is exploited.
The refugees (migrants, travellers, humans) just want to get to the border. They don’t trust anyone anymore. They were ripped-off so many times along the journey that they can no longer trust that you, a solidarity activist, haven’t approached them to attempt the same.
People in solidarity are very few and there’s thousands of refugees and traffickers.
You don’t always get to have a voluneer translator and you can’t speak their language like traffickers do.
Traffickers of all kinds. They sell hope. ”Travel agencies” load the ”merchandise”.
What if they only make it to Volos, or even half the way there.
What if not everyone makes it to Eidomeni.
The traffickers count on the pre-paid tickers bought on the islands.
They often blame the people in solidarity because they look after refugees for free and they lose their share of profit from the overcharged water bottles and food that can be bought at the stops. When they are kicked out of the port, small counters are instantly created outside and send promoters to collect customers. They make it. The corner shop that charges refugees twice as much. The canteen with a greek flag. The taxi with no metre. Eleonas -Piraeus 20 euro taxi fare for a single ride.
And when the borders close and thousands arrive, there’s captivation: transfers to ”accommodation centres” under the surveillance of uniformed police who don’t always behave nicely. Pressure to evacuate the port. ”There’s normal travellers too, you see”. ”Normal travellers”. They don’t even see how wrong that is.
(And then there’s the others. Familiar faces known for years. Always around. In plainclothes. And headsets.)
Customers of Europe.
Of ferries. Of hotels. Of canteens. Of buses. Of taxis. Of frontex. Of IRC. Of the police. Of social media personas. Of companies. Of NATO. Of NGOs. Of viewers.
Customers of a media propaganda that was permanantly staged by TV crews willing to step on the bodies of sleeping or resting refugees just to get a nice close up shot.
And those who won’t share any of the above mentioned information during news broadcasting.
New-borns. Babies. Children. Pregnant women. People on wheel-chairs. With artificial limbs. Scars. Diabetics. Elderly. Orphans. Beautiful. Proud.
All these parallel stories must be repeated word by word.
No silence, no compromise, no charity.
Practical Solidarity on the streets for us and for everybody’s children.
THIS IS OUR ONLY WEAPON.