The "two words" attributed to Marine Le Pen are actually fairly polite ones. ("Go away!") Her father, a veteran of the French Army, might have used a different "two words." But apparently the chief concern of Bloomberg News at the sight of thousands of refugees fleeing Libya to invade Italy is the possibility that this catastrophe may cause "rhetoric."
'Biblical Exodus' From Africa Feeds Anti-Immigrant Rhetoric By Flavia Krause-Jackson - Mar 16, 2011 7:01 PM ET As boats carrying hundreds of Africans set sail for a better life in Europe, they were met on Italy's Lampedusa island with two words by a 5-foot, 8-inch blonde: go away.
Note the reference to "a better life in Europe,"—that's immigration "rhetoric." Actual refugees aren't looking for a better life, they're looking to stay alive at all.
“They cannot be allowed on the shore,” Marine Le Pen, the 42-year-old leader of France’s anti-immigration National Front, said in a March 15 interview in Rome after a three-hour visit the previous day to Lampedusa. “Send boats out to feed them. But they must not set foot on land.”
The island, a speck in the Mediterranean Sea closer to Tunisia than Sicily, is experiencing first-hand an immigration surge poised to spread to the rest of Europe and drive a deeper wedge in a north-south divide already tested by the sovereign- debt crisis.
“It’s evident that Italy has been abandoned by Europe,” Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said in Brussels on March 10 after a meeting with his European Union counterparts. “We can’t be the policeman of Europe.”
The month-long civil war in Libya between Muammar Qaddafi’s regime and rebel forces in the oil-rich east has left 6,000 people dead, driven crude prices to a 2 1/2-year high and unleashed what Italian Interior Minister Roberto Maroni, the country’s most popular politician, called a “biblical exodus.”
North of Rome, a backlash has already begun as Italy warns its neighbors that 70 percent of Africans washing up on its shores are headed to France and Germany to seek work..[More]
And the photograph of the invaders is captioned "Tunisian would-be immigrants wait for their belonging..." Would-be immigrants? I repeat that refugees aren't supposed to be immigrants. They are claiming to be fleeing for their lives. If a million—or ten million—refugees find a better life in Italy, it will only happen by making life worse for the Italians.