Friday 1 April 2011

Lampedusa and the construction of a "human tsunami"

In my previous blogpost, I argued how Gaddafi, European politicians and agencies like Frontex have "invented" the illusionary threat of an imminent immigrant invasion from Africa to serve their own cynical, xenophobic political agendas.
For more insights into how Berlusconi's government creates an immigration emergency to deflect the attention away from his various scandals and domestic failures, I warmly recommend Nando Sigona's excellent blog, and his particularly his latest posts on "Lampedusa and the spectacle of the invasion".

He argues how the Berlusconi government needs a tiny island like Lampedusa, “small enough to appear overcrowded even with a few thousand people” –  this is the only way the “grand narrative of the emergency and invasion” constructed by the Italian government and happily swallowed by sensationalist mass media can be kept alive.  

Nando Sigona also rightly critizised the total lack of sensitivity for the victims of real tsunamis shown by Berlusconi when he compared the arrival of migrants and refugees from North Africa as a ‘human tsunami’.

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