If war is indeed hell, then its victims are driven by a hellish desperation for relief, for comfort and for refuge from the pangs of war.
And this drive to escape the violence and brutality of war, forces victims of conflict to resort to many different modes and antics to escape war zones. Hence, some people view the suffering desperation of refugees as a means to their own selfish wealth. Thus, it has come to past that out of the Syrian war, human traffickers are capitalizing on the plight and desperation of victims of conflict to fill their coffers. In so doing, ship crews, who could be providing a humanitarian service to refugees, have undertaken practices imperiling further the lives of refugees in the pursuit to making a buck.
Twice within as many days within the past week, desperate victims of the Syrian war were abandoned on the Mediterranean Sea aboard auto-piloted rickety ships as the smuggler crews jumped ship fearing arrest at the post of destination. On December 31, the crew of Blue Sky M abandoned ship at sea with 796 Syrian refugees on board. The auto-pilot of the Blue Sky M had been set to run onto the Italian coast.
Again on January 02, another ship, the Ezadeen, sailing under the registry of Sierra Leone with 359 Syrian refugees on board, was abandoned by the hooded crew at sea after it was auto-piloted to run into the Italian coast. The refugees - 255 men, 42 women and 62 children of whom eight were accompanied, were assisted by the busy Italian Coast Guard. Both ships originated in Turkey.
The BBC reports that Italy believes the traffickers made some $3 million on the Ezadeen ship of refugees(charging between $4,000 to $8,000 a passenger), thus abandoning the old ship normally used for ferrying cattle, was not a loss to the smugglers.
But both events underscore yet another secondary effect of the Syrian war which Bashar al Assad continues to wage against the Syrian people. These two events also highlight the danger refugees face to escape war. And there will be more effects, dangers and destabilizing events until the Syrian war ends.