President Obama delivers a compelling, informed and moving speech at the Leaders’ Summit for Refugees, praising the efforts of countries such as Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Pakistan in assisting refugees and shaming many of his fellow Western leaders for doing too little – intent as they are to build instead taller and longer walls, deport children back to war zones, deploy the latest technologies to stop ‘uncontrolled migration’, and feed dangerous nationalist sentiments with the human flesh of children, women and men fleeing war and persecution.
I’ll save this speech for my students, as a reminder that things don’t need to be so bad and that the insular, selfish and narrow-minded vision of the world that we get sold in the UK and has become so dominant these days (with Theresa May and her far right ministers at the front but with quite a few Labour MPs ready to follow) can and must be challenged, because, as Obama says in his speech, ‘the refugee crisis is a test of our humanity’. And we are failing it.