Calais is the closest point in France to the United Kingdom. Besides that distinction, it’s basically sort of a shithole. And besides
distinction, Calais is also where thousands of refugees to France from Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and Somalia congregate in a massive, sprawling camp of improvised shelters. The refugees and the press alike call this provisional home “the jungle.” It’s a filthy place that sits in a grimy forest between a chemical factory and the harbor. It’s an ideal base from which to plan an illegal emigration to England. Recently, a young British journalist was raped in the jungle of Calais while on assignment there. It’s been one of the most reported stories in the French press in recent months, leading to angry debates regarding race, immigration, crime, poverty, privilege, and the end of the world. You know, the usual.
We recently went to the jungle ourselves to see if the reality lived up to the horror stories in the media. (Here, we’ll spare you the suspense: It does.)
Vice: Why did you leave Afghanistan?
How did you travel?
Vice: So, what’s next? What are your plans for the future?
Are you thinking of going back to what you did before?