In his article, Richard Miles takes up the thesis that a welcoming refugee policy is likely to reap more rewards than an exclusionary, hostile attitude towards displaced persons. Using the Roman Empire as an example, Miles puts forward the argument that the leaders and people who found refuge in Rome would repay Rome by fostering friendly, pro-Roman policies. Conversely, when Rome didn’t welcome the Goths, discord developed.
Modern countries could probably learn a lot from Miles’s theory. It makes sense that if a given country treats people from another country kindly, they will be more likely to form a favorable position of the county that’s taken them in. Thus, by welcoming refugees, countries can potentially deter future threats.
Unfortunately, the example with the Goths appears to be the attitude adopted by many countries. Several countries do not welcome refugees but try to keep them out. In 2020, the United States admitted around 18,000 refugees, which was the lowest amount of refugees let in by the United States since 1980.
Meanwhile, refugees seeking to relocate to Australia have found themselves put in detention centers on the Manus and Nauru islands. The condition of these detention centers are deplorable, and refugees have cut themselves and attempted suicide. As with the Goths and the Romans, it’s hard to argue that refugees will form a favorable opinion of a country that treats them with such inconsideration.