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An address for the end of Refugee Week 2018—“When the law of the strong, and of natural selection, took the place of the word of love, it became apparent that giving up the Bible is not always enlightened: Nero’s torches can burn all the brighter for it.”—Ernst Bloch (1885-1977)

I imagine that, like most of you, I have been truly shocked by the events taking place on the southern border of the USA where, until Thursday morning, the children of asylum seekers and refugees were being forcibly separated from their parents with the open support and encouragement of the neophyte dictator Donald Trump. That policy has been paused, thank heavens, but the new (really the status quo ante) policy is, in truth, really no better. About it I am almost at a loss for words and certainly deeply shocked and angered. But I am as equally shocked and angered by what is happening to asylum seekers and refugees across Europe on a daily basis, a situation that is worsening every week, notably at the moment in Germany as the far right party in the coalition, the AfD, begin to flex their muscles and also in Italy where, under the directions of the clearly neo-Fascist Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, the move against asylum seekers and refugees has taken an additional and even nasti…

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