When George Soros speaks, people listen, and have been doing so for years. Now one of the thirty richest people in the world, Soros was born into a Jewish family in Budapest. Having escaped the Nazi occupation of Hungary and emigrated to England, Soros worked his own way through a university degree from the London School of Economics. His business acumen brought him to the USA, where in 1970 he founded Soros Fund Management; in 2010 this organization was rated one of the world’s most profitable hedge funds. From this background George Soros has emerged not only as one of the savviest financiers in history, but as one of the world’s great philanthropists as well. He has given away more than $11 billion, funding humanitarian, educational, and politically liberal causes in many nations around the world. To assist this activity he founded The Open Society Foundation in 1993.
George Soros has been true to his personal history in supporting a number of causes in Central Europe, among these his support of the Central European University in Budapest. During the rocky period of the breakup of the Soviet Union, George Soros assisted the transition to capitalism in a variety of ways. He has been active in opposing apartheid in South Africa and human rights in the USA. So it comes as no surprise that George Soros would cause some attention recently in an article for MarketWatch.
In his article, George Soros addresses the need for a solid and uniformly applied plan to deal with the immigration crisis in the European Union. Swamped with refugees rushing into Europe from the Middle East and North Africa, member states of the EU have been desperately trying to impose some kind of order. Right-wing governments such as that of Hungary have been issuing their own dictates and forming their own policies concerning their border security. But this is a very bad step, Soros insists, one that is basically opposed to the EU’s basic commitment to the ontological rights of human beings. Any policy involving the refugees must be one that recognizes their human rights; on this point Soros is adamant. Such a policy must be supported by the United Nations as well, which must treat the refugee crisis as a global issue. To this end, Soros proposes a six-step plan. First, the European Union must accept that it will have to resettle and support at least a million refugees annually; these people have the right to participate in the selection of the place they are settled, and can be supported by the sale of bonds. Secondly, Middle Eastern countries like Turkey that are currently sheltering refugees must be given financial support. The EU needs to set up a single Asylum and Migration Agency to deal with all Europe’s borders and insure that refugees crossing the Mediterranean won’t be putting their lives at risk. Such an agency would establish global standards for treating refugees. Finally, the European Union should organize and mobilize various groups from the private sector (churches, NGO’s, non-profit organizations) to assist in implementing the details of its policies. The ultimate goal: keep the EU true to its human-rights principles.
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