Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The risk of ISIS invasion to Europe

Whether the time is right or not, there is no question that there is a palpable tension in Italy over the ISIS threat—Libya is just 109 miles away from the island of Lampedusa and 300 miles from Sicily—made worse by a 64 percent increase in illegal migrant arrivals by sea since last year. In all of 2014, more than 170,000 people arrived from Libya and Turkey, the highest number ever recorded. Last weekend, as the embassy staff made their way to Italy on a mercantile ship, 2,164 migrants left the same Libyan shores en route to Sicily. The week before, more than 300 people were lost in the same seas as their rickety fishing boats capsized before rescuers could save them. The Daily Beast

Some security related news is simply fear mongering without any basis on realistic assessment of reality. This news piece is not

UNHCR reported that more than 87,000 people landed in Italy in the first 7 months of 2014, primarily on the island of Lampedusa.

The Italian government knows that Lampedusa is a vulnerable place on the face of chaos and growing regional security threat from Libya. IS knows that Lampedusa is a soft target.

Libya has plenty of people traffickers and smugglers that do numerous boat launches full of African and Middle East war refugees to Europe. It is quite simple to do a militarized version of these boat launches. A dozen guys with RPGs and rifles can do a lot of damage against local population in a small island far away from the mainland Italy.

I have much sympathy for Italy in trying to deal with the migrant influx to its shore because they have not had enough support from EU. The rapidly growing lawlessness in Libya makes their job even harder.

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