These people are leaving behind their place of birth, their friends, maybe family and everything they own. They have made the desperate decision because what they face is worse. They have no choice if they want to live. I can't imagine facing something similar.
The upsurge of violence in Syria and Egypt has caused an increase in the number of refugees attempting to reach Italy in recent months. As a result, thousands of people have made the hazardous crossing from North Africa to Italy or Malta in open boats.
Photograph: Valentino Cilmi/EPA
Vessels loaded with people from Syria, Egypt, Eritrea, Nigeria and Ghana are arriving in poor state, often in difficulty, off Sicily. Migrants are assessed to see whether they have genuine grounds for seeking asylum in Europe. Italy has urged its EU partners to do more to share the burden of housing them.
Where can these desperate migrants go? They try to reach the closest place of safety—fathers, mothers, children and their aging relatives. They've left their fete to the sea and braved the unknown to find a new home. Many never reach protection.
Although things become desperate in our financial times for the aged in Britain, they don't compare to the plight of these poor people, whose future is blowing in the wind. Listen to Bob Dylan's song:
Yes, how many times must a man look up
Before he can see the sky ?
Yes, how many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry ?
Yes, how many deaths will it take till he knows
That too many people have died ?
The answer my friend is blowin' in the wind
The answer is blowin' in the wind.