US-led wars have displaced 37 m people. America should accept responsibility. The refugees

sTheseus George W. Bush declared a “global war on terror” after al-Qaeda’s September 11 attacks, the war planes the US military has launched and displaced an estimated 37 million people, according to a new report. Assisted production with teams from American. University and Brown University’s cost of war project.

Of the 37 million displaced, 8 million are refugees and asylum seekers, and 29 million are displaced within Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, the Philippines, Somalia, Syria and Yemen. Displacing 37 million people is equivalent to removing all residents of Texas and Virginia combined or nearly the whole of Canada.

Even looking at questions about the best international displacement figures, our estimate of 37 million displaced is a conservative one. The total truth displaced by the American Post-9/11 Wars may be closer to 48-59 million – more people than the whole of England.

To be clear, the US government is not solely responsible for displacing 37 million people. The Taliban, Iraqi Sunni and Shia militias, Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, the Islamic State, al-Qaeda and other fighters, governments and actors form the UK government and other US allies share responsibility.

However, there are eight wars in our study, giving the US government (Afghanistan / Pakistan and Iraq) significant responsibility to take the initiative, to advance as a major fighter (Libya and Syria), or by drone strikes, combat advice , To refuel through logistics support. , And other military aid (Yemen, Somalia and the Philippines). Displacement in these wars was total:

  • 5.3 million Afghans;

  • 9.2 million Iraqis;

  • 3.7 million Pakistanis;

  • 1.7 million Filipinos;

  • 4.2 million Somalis;

  • 4.4 million Yemen;

  • 1.2 million Libya;

  • 7.1 million Syrian.

Some may criticize the inclusion of countries outside Afghanistan and Iraq in our calculations. Some people may criticize the inclusion of Syria (although our conservative methodology includes half the people displaced since the beginning of the Syrian civil war). We note that even though we were only focusing on the 14.5 million displaced in Afghanistan and Iraq, that displacement would outweigh any war since 1900, except for the Second World War.

Those who have been forced to flee their homes have suffered deep losses. Displacement has affected people financially, psychologically, socially and emotionally. The mass displacement has hurt host communities and countries, which have faced the burden of hosting the displaced. Mass migration to Europe has led to the rise of far right and racist and nationalist movements around the world. These movements have helped repel orchestras against refugees in places such as Germany and France; Since 2016, most of Europe has blocked the entry of refugees, implicating people often in disgusting conditions in places like Lesbos, Greece.

The vast majority of the displaced put their side on the US government. Since 2001, the US government has admitted just 348,000 refugees from all over the Middle East. In contrast, there are currently 3.9 million refugees and other displaced people in Turkey. One in every seven and one in every fifteen people in Lebanon and Jordan, respectively, are refugees. In recent years, Canada has settled more than 10 refugees per capita as the United States. Under the Trump administration, US refugee admissions have reached near zero, amid restrictions on accepting refugees and other migrants from many Muslim-majority countries.

American leaders could support large numbers of the displaced. Republican and Democratic administrations have done so before. In the wake of the war in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos, the US government admitted more than 800,000 South-East Asian refugees.

While many believe that refugees are a financial burden on host countries, German leaders received about 900,000 refugee asylum applications in 2015 that were not out of the sense of historical obligation related to the Nazi Holocaust, but also because they understood that refugees An important new workforce has been given to the aging German population.

As the grandchildren of the Jewish refugees who fled to Nazi Germany, I believe it is the obligation of American citizens to repair the damage done after the 9/11 war, which killed tens of millions and killed millions. Went and got injured. After Trump’s office is ensured, we must renew a commitment to welcome the world’s “tired … poor … yearning to breathe free.”

We should be committed to supporting at least 250,000 refugees over the next decade. We should increase support for refugees upon their arrival in the US. While the country is the top donor to the UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, the US must more than double its contribution to at least $ 5bn (still a small amount). Britain and other countries have waged war with US forces, they should make comparable efforts to repair.

Those concerned about the cost of such efforts should look at the $ 740bn annual US military budget, which is higher than the combined 10 countries: money. We will end the war of almost two decades responsibly and free more taxpayer funds and become a permanent war-money machine.

If America does not say about the horrific effects of its wars – and if we do not fundamentally question the legitimacy and efficacy of the war, then given the disastrous consequences of 19 years – endless wars will have no end. Finally, endless wars will continue to displace over 37 million millions who have already fled home.

  • David Vine is Professor of Anthropology at American University in Washington DC. Vine is a director of the American University Public Anthropology Clinic and a board member of Brown University’s Cost of War project. The views expressed here are of Vinesh’s alone

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