The corporate media is always eager to do its bit for the ‘war on terror’, on this occasion aiming its not-very-smart bombs on innocent civilians: the wives and children of 13 “allegedly ‘would-be’ terrorists”…
Families benefit as accused go to jail
By LINCOLN WRIGHT
AUSTRALIA’S 22 terror suspects and their families receive more than $1 million a year in taxpayer-funded welfare and legal aid.
“Tax-payer funded” eh? Gee, I always wondered where the money comes from…
And simply because the men were locked up, their families received a social security pay rise of as much as $1700 a year.
A fact which, as is revealed by Wright below, is perfectly unexceptional.
One of the jailed Melbourne men, Abdul Nacer Benbrika — leader of a radical group of Islamists — has been in Australia for 10 years and has never had a job.
SFW? John HoWARd’s been Prime Minister for 10 years, an MP for 32, and consequently wouldn’t know an honest day’s work if it bit him on the arse. But I somehow doubt the fact that he’s been paid a small fortune to lie to the Australian public for that length of time will ever be breathlessly revealed in an article published by The Hun, do you?
Taxpayers provide his wife with almost $50,000 a year in welfare.
A Sunday Herald Sun investigation uncovered generous payments to the families of men charged with plotting terror in Australia.
Yes, the families of the 22 men charged; is The Hun suggesting that they too, should be on trial?
As for Wright’s ‘investigatory’ (sic) skills, little other than access to Centrelink‘s website and knowledge of the composition of the men’s families is required in order to compose this particular kind of filler.
And that $50,000 is presumably intended to support not only that one woman, but her seven children as well.
What’s $50,000 divided by eight, Lincoln?
Adding tens of thousands of dollars in parenting payments, rent assistance and family tax benefits to the cost of legal services for the accused makes a total bill to taxpayers of more than $1 million.
Since November, 22 allegedly would-be terrorists have been arrested in Melbourne and Sydney under Operation Pendennis, a joint ASIO, AFP and state police forces operation.
Mr Benbrika was among 13 Melbourne men charged with belonging to a terrorist organisation.
Of Algerian descent, he has a Lebanese-born wife and seven children.
(OK, so that’s one million dollars divided between seven children, and two adults.)
Does the fact that Benbrika’s wife was born in Lebanon alter her entitlements?
But it does reinforce the notion that, not only are the families of “would-be (sic) terrorists” profiting from terror — at the expense of the Australian tax-payer — they’re foreigners to boot!
Subtle as a brick.
Under Centrelink rules, she is entitled to almost $50,000 a year in welfare while her husband is in prison, awaiting trial.
As is customary in the extensive corporate media reportage of such cases, Wright is using figures drawn from Centrelink, not the family in question. Thus Benbrika’s wife’s entitlement is not necessarily the same as her actual income.
Ahmed Raad, another Melbourne suspect, has a child and his wife is entitled to about $21,500 a year, as are the wives of Ezzit Raad and Abdullah Merhi.
OK, so that’s one million dollars divided between eight adults and eight children.
The wife of another suspect, Hany Taha, who has three children, is entitled to up to $30,000 a year.
Which now makes it one million dollars divided between ten adults and eleven children.
Among nine Sydney suspects charged with conspiracy to carry out a terrorist attack was engineer Mohamed Ali Elomar, 40. He has five children and his wife is entitled to about $38,000 a year in taxpayer payments.
Let’s see… that’s one million dollars divided between twenty adults and sixteen children.
Omar Baladjam, a former actor on the ABC TV program Wildside, has two children.
Which brings our tally to twenty adults and eighteen children.
A Centrelink spokeswoman said the fact someone had been jailed for terrorist offences did not stop their spouse or children receiving welfare. The maximum parenting payment increases from $377.50 a fortnight to $444.20 when a spouse is in jail, she said.
I apologise for doubting Wright’s talents as an investigative journalist: he not only looked at the Centrelink website, he actually asked a Centrelink spokesperson their legal opinion. Still, as strenuous as Wright’s efforts have been to uncover important, one million dollar facts, and to place these before the Australian public for their intense critical scrutiny, I somehow doubt there’ll be a Walkley waiting for him at the end of it.
Two so-called “Anglo” terrorist suspects, Jack “Jihad” Thomas and Shane Kent, also have children and benefit from Centrelink payments.
“So-called”? By whom? Is Wright implying that the two men in question are not, in fact, of “Anglo” descent? Or is this merely intended to reinforce the notion that “Anglos” — unlike ‘foreigners’ — are incapable of “terrorism”?
Subtle… very subtle.
Mr Kent has two children, while Thomas, who is appealing against a conviction for receiving funds from a terrorist organisation, has three children.
Ooops. That’s one million dollars divided between twenty-two adults and twenty-three children.
Now, according to my calculations, one million dollars divided by forty-five is $22,222.20.
Not much of a headline really, is it?
Victims of crime groups expressed outrage at the payments.
Well, no surprises there then. And, I suspect, precisely why Wright bothered to contact them for their opinion in the first place.
I mean, he couldn’t actually ask the families of any victims now could he?