A precocious ten year old asked me yesterday what I plan to do to help the Syrian refugee children. An only child, she wishes to “adopt” at least one child. Her question shook me deeply. As Hungary struggles with an overwhelming influx of refugees fleeing the war in Syria-- many who will never reach the Euro Zone but instead die at the hands of ruthless traffickers by suffocation in vans, or drowning, as 3 year old Ilan Kurdi did, as they attempt to make their way from Turkey to Greece-- one German reporter characterized Hungary’s change of heart to bus refugees to the Austrian border as “not finding a clear line” and ”a confused policy” to explain the doubt of frightened refugees for Hungarian authorities’ intentions. Volunteers along the lengthy march through Hungary to Austria hand out food and water and offer a place to sleep.
Pundits are asked “Who is responsible?” and I am reminded that ‘Few are guilty, all are responsible’ [Heschel]. Yes, the world-- not solely the USA, who did create a power vacuum for so called ISIS in Iraq-- has insufficiently turned its attention to the tragedy that is destroying Syria. My ten year old patient said to me hopefully, “When I adopt a child, you can talk to her like you talk to me.”