Importing Poverty, Terror

Anyone who believes that generous handouts will quell societal violence should consider the case of Shadi Abdellah, 26, a Jordanian emigrant to Germany.

Abdellah, who was rounded up with several others in April 2002, told a German court Tuesday that he went to Germany and took advantage of that nation’s generous welfare programs. He allegedly spent his free time becoming a terrorist.

The Jordanian described himself as “a drifter” who “never thought about the future.” German authorities foolishly let him into their country and let him stay on humanitarian grounds. Abdellah told the court that in early 1999, he was living on welfare. “I wasn’t even trying to find a job,” he said, adding that he spent his welfare payments smoking hashish.

It was then, while living at German taxpayers’ expense, that Abdellah “became immersed in Islam.” He then allegedly joined al Qaeda, serving as a document forger and making weapons orders to members of other terror cells. At some point he made a trip to Afghanistan, and he is accused of briefly serving as Osama bin Laden’s personal bodyguard at an al-Qaeda camp.

Now, consider that Abdellah is precisely the kind of person Congressional liberals would like to bring over the border to the United States. Or at least, they are doing what they can to attract such people by offering handouts to recent immigrants instead of making them work for the American dream, like every other generation of immigrants in the history of the country has done.

Three Republicans cooperated with the liberals last week in the Senate Finance Committee in a move to restore taxpayer-funded health entitlements to foreigners right off the boat–who are already required, by the way, to have a sponsor in the U.S. who will support them in hard times so they don’t have to go on the public dole.

Sen. Don Nickles (R.-Okla.) tried to block the restoration of health entitlements, which were taken away in the 1996 wave of welfare reforms. “We don’t want to have our generosity of welfare as a magnet encouraging people to come into the country,” he said.

But Nickles’ view did not prevail in a Senate where Republicans apparently think it an act of compassion to buy immigrants’ votes with other people’s money.

Americans, including U.S. Senators, should take warning: we already have domestic poverty. No good can come from importing more of it. We may even be paying for lazy, shiftless foreigners like Mr. Abdellah to plot our destruction.



  • Washington Post: Jordanian Admits He’s Aide of al-Qaida
  • Washington Post: Poor Immigrants Look to Medicare Bill