News has come through that after being held in custody for nearly two weeks, Gold Coast based Doctor, Mohammed Hanef has now been charged.
According to this report,“he has been charged with recklessly supplying a mobile phone sim card to a terrorist organisation.”
The offence carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison (originally reported as 25 years).
Of course, it will take a long time for the case against him to be brought to trial and heard. It will not be determined until well after the election, but in the meantime any mention of the story will carry words along the lines of “Muslim doctor charged with terrorism related offences”. History has already shown us that throughout that period, there are plenty of people in the media willing to report leaked allegations and ‘evidence’ that show him in the worst possible light and fuels a perception of suspicion. History also shows us that even if he is acquitted by the courts, the government will ensure he will never be really cleared of suspicion.
If there are sufficient sureties, he may be released on bail while all this goes on. Anyone who assists him runs the risk of not only being smeared – that’s a given – but of coming under suspicion of breaching the law.
We can also stand by for more calls for immigration restrictions against Muslims, even though they have been part of the Australian community for well over a century.
Yep, I’m feeling safer and relaxed.
I would invite people to study the relevant laws – most of which was passed into law by both major parties before the Coalition gained control of the Senate for itself – before commenting, and in particular the legal effect of the term “reckless”.
In related news, I’ve been told the federal government is planning to appeal against the ‘leniency’ of the sentence handed out to the nonviolent Christian peace protesters who (openly and with pre-warning) entered the Palm Gap intelligence facility to show their concern against war. They were the first ever to be charged under a cold war era law, on specific decision of the Attorney-General, which carried a jail term of up to seven years. An army of QCs were deployed (at taxpayer expense of course) to ensure they were convicted and that the evidence supporting their position was not able to be heard, let alone considered, by the jury. The government’s prosecutors were specifically directed to argue for a jail sentence, but the judge sentenced them to a range of fines.
Clearly the government believes we will all be safer if these nonviolent peace protesters are behind bars, and it is important that government legal and financial resources are directed towards making that happen. After all, we can’t have people opposing the government, that is far too unsafe.
(Click on these links to read more details about the government’s appeal and what the original case was about)
UPDATE: According to the Australian Federal Police Commissioner, as quoted in the updated ABC website report, the Australian government have had more than 300 lawyers and police working on the investigation. One can imagine the cost of that, financially and in the diversion of focus and energy. The bottom trawling of information has been so vast that they have reportedly pulled together the equivalent of 36 000 four draw filing cabinets of material.
If you think things might be better after the election, here is Kevin Rudd’s politically correct response.
“My message to the Australian people is this: that when it comes to terrorism, terrorists and those who support terrorist organisations, this country must continue to adopt a hardline uncompromising stance – there are no alternatives,” Mr Rudd said
Got that? There is no alternative approach that governments and their agents – indeed our country – can take on this issue. Not one.
Have a nice day. I’m off to Pig City, where we will all reminisce about the terrible police state of the Bjelke-Petersen era.