John Oliver tackled the European response to the massive influx of Syrian refugees on Sunday’s episode of “Last Week Tonight.”
Millions of refugees have fled civil war and persecution in their native country, which has left many European countries’ immigration systems overwhelmed.
“The scale of this story can be hard to get your head around,” Oliver said. “Hundreds of thousands of people are on the move just within Europe and another 4 million are being hosted in Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan. And when numbers get that high they can be hard to comprehend. It’s like when somebody tells you the size of the audience of ‘NCIS: New Orleans.'”
Many refugees have met with fear and bigotry. A Fox News report featuring a video of what they claim are Syrian refugees on a French train chanting the Muslim phrase “Allahu Akbar” claimed it was not calling the group terrorists, but as Oliver pointed out, the report used a graphic featuring the phrase “Terrorists inbound?”
Oliver then revealed he and his staff had found the same video uploaded to YouTube as early as 2010.
He also showed actual examples of paperwork given to refugees, which tells them they must wait anywhere from three months to five years before their immigration application can be processed, during which time they are not allowed to work.
“These people can’t go five years without working,” Oliver said. “They’re refugees, not Renee Zellweger.”