Social unrest or mass migration after the covid 19 pandemic?

Social unrest or mass migration after the covid 19 pandemic?

Picture: Ggia/CC BY-SA 4.0

The Covid-19 measures, along with the outbreak of racist police violence, have led to protests against state power, which could lead to riots or waves of emigration in the post-pandemic world, according to one study

In the U.S., with the gruesome killing of George Floyd by a police officer in the midst of the Covid 19 pandemic, protests against police violence have spread like wildfire across cities, also expressing long-pent-up resentment of U.S. President Donald Trump in the election year. Trump is playing with the use of the army and firearms, and he is doing a lot of cleaning up for his right-wing clientele "Law Order", refers to the demonstrators as "Anarchists" and "terrorists" and seems to accept or even want to provoke an outbreak of riots and their subsequent suppression by violence by stirring up the conflict in the USA, which is already torn apart politically for the election campaign.

In Germany, on the other hand, the "Hygiene demos" respectively. the protests against the lockdown mabnahme with their amalgam of positions again jerky. However, the German interior ministers still seem to be concerned that the often prevailing mood of fundamental criticism of the government, the conspiracy theories surrounding global power structures and the infiltration by right-wingers could give rise to a movement similar to Pegida. #

In a prepared resolution for the conference of interior ministers in Erfurt it is stated that one observes "Attention to the fact that the current Corona pandemic is being exploited by extremists, conspiracy theorists, as well as intelligence actors from foreign states". Extremists have been exploiting the Corona crisis for "their anti-constitutional purposes" abuse. Attempts are being made to, "to create fear and unrest among the population". And they could be increasingly aggressive about the economic consequences not of the pandemic, but of the measures taken against it, and follow new political movements much as they did in 2015.

In order to avert this, a joint effort should be made against "targeted false reports, conspiracy theories and disinformation campaigns" be pursued. Police and security services are to present a special situation report by the fall "potential dangers and risks, especially from extremists and foreign services" submit. Scenarios are conjured up that individuals or parts of the scene could arm themselves and carry out attacks similar to the circles of the Reichsburgs and the right-wing extremists strengthened by Pegida. This is really not a new phenomenon, but goes back to the history of the Federal Republic of Germany.

In addition, there were left-wing demonstrations and, most recently, anti-racism protests. The social division between right-wing nationalist, authoritarian movements and liberal, left-wing and globalist movements is deepening, as can now be seen in Great Britain and France.

Australian Study: Covid-19 as the Cause of a New Exodus

According to a study by Australian scientists at the Centre for Complex Systems at the University of Sydney, there is justified concern that the pandemic will lead not only to unrest among the population, but also to a new surge in mass migration. In Germany, Pegida, AfD, right-wing nationalists and the new alleged defenders of fundamental rights came together, as did the right-wing nationalist, xenophobic and partly racist clientele of Donald Trump’s supporters in the USA with those who also consider the danger of the pandemic and the measures introduced to be far exaggerated and, finally, Covid-19 with the associated 119.Consider 000 deaths as normal flu.

Epidemics, riots and wars are the cause of large-scale mass movements. Reference is made to the Second World War, which caused the largest migratory movements in European history, to the Syrian conflict, which led to the flight of over four million people in 2015-2016, or to the Ebola crisis, which also caused many people to flee temporarily or permanently. Even if now the lockdown measures led to the closing of the borders and to the extensive interruption of the travel and migration movements, this could not have been achieved in the "post-pandemic world" look completely different.

Epidemiologists led by Mikhail Prokopenko, as they describe in their article in Nature’s Scientific Reports, have developed a mathematical epidemiological model to predict the spread of an "contagion" Calculate in an area based on the individual mobility decisions of agents, who in turn respond to what’s happening. Individual preferences are supposed to be used to infer the behavior of a larger population. The contagion phenomenon includes not only epidemics, but also riots, social division or "infodemics", i.e. waves of disinformation, understood to spread spatially. But waves of migration to supposedly safer areas also.

According to the very theoretical model, even very small changes in decision-making or in the perception of risks or opportunities can cause sudden changes in collective behavior. For example, if people see risks just a little differently, their collective behavior can lead to a reversal – such as no longer taking precautions to avoid infection or seeking salvation in migration: "While Ebola has affected only relatively small areas of the world, the Covid 19 pandemic has reached nearly every country and continues to spread. Therefore, we can expect far-reaching effects that will increase global and regional migration", says Prokopenko. Thus, people from countries where there is severe poverty and the pandemic is raging, such as Brazil, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela, could be driven to flee to other countries to find safety.

According to the model, the Covid 19 pandemic could become a catalyst for mass migration, but this is a theoretical possibility. It is equally possible to speculate that the post-pandemic world increased nationalization, i.e., the isolation and closure of states, and thus reduced globalization. In any case, the pandemic was allowed to increase social division and distrust in governments. Desperate attempts to counter this with fighting conspiracy theories and disinformation campaigns will tend to increase distrust.