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The Forum > Article Comments > How can some of our returned service personnel be 'aliens' in Australia? > Comments

How can some of our returned service personnel be 'aliens' in Australia? : Comments

By Andrew Murray, published 9/2/2004

Andrew Murray argues that the federal government is unreasonably restricting the rights of lawful immigrants

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I, for one can only agree with Senator Murray's argument.

My Grandfather had this very same problem in 1965, when he applied for the Age Pension at age 71 years of age. He was born in Australia, but his parents were poor Jewish immigrants from Russia and France, arriving here around 1890. They ran a business, until they were in their late 70's, paid taxes, had 5 children, and numerous grandchildren, great grandchildren etc.

Grandpa Samuel was not recognised as an Australian Citizen despite having served in the Australian Army in World War One, and having three sons who all served in the Australian Navy during World War Two. The Government were happy to take his taxes over a 59 year working life, and his 4 children and 10 grandchildren's taxes.

Despite my father serving in the Navy from 1934-46, where he saw the fiercest fighting in almost every major sea battle during WW2, across the seven seas, I was still a "wog," a "Hun," an "alien" at school and in the workplace.

Even in the RSL, where I worked as a Voluntary Welfare Officer, some WW1 & WW2 diggers accused me of being a Hun and not worthy to wear the RSL lapel badge. And this, despite serving my country overseas, during 12 years of Naval service, terminated only through serious injuries on active service.

Australia likes to think it gives people a "fair go" but did those days ever exist? Among an older generation in times long gone, I think "MAYBE."

But not since perhaps the early 60's - even then look at our treatment of Germans and Italians who were born and farmed here, then cruelly interred during two world wars.

Then, look at those, like my ancestors, who came to these shores to escape Facism, Holocaust, Persecution etc and then look at the way they are treated even after fighting for this country.

I suggest the more Affluent (effluent?) the Lucky Country gets, the more selfish, biggoted and racist it becomes.

Charles Fles-fader (Fleisfeder/Flisfeder)
Posted by Flezzey, Wednesday, 12 September 2007 2:32:51 PM
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