Half a dozen lives in the hands of one man

I don’t even know what to make of the disaster that is the 60 Minutes kidnapping scandal.

I’m struggling to process how this happened; how it ended up that we have four Australians incarcerated in Beirut, their partners and children terrified and their future uncertain.

I’ve been reading everything I can about Sally Faulkner and 60 Minutes’ role in her kids’ botched kidnapping and so far, I can see all the different sides of the story.


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But all roads lead to one destination. The end result is a hot mess.

There is a mother, who was so badly missing her children she resorted to desperate actions – even though it meant leaving her 12-week-old baby behind…

A father, who didn’t want to lose his kids so he fled the country with them…

A reporting team from Australia, now locked up behind bars in Lebanon due to some seriously dubious decisions made by their superiors…

And at the centre of it all, two small children, Noah and Lahela, who will suffer the heartbreaking consequences of this incredibly sad and complicated series of events for many years after it disappears from news headlines.

Their father, Ali Elamine, has admitted that his children miss their mum. He said they “probably would want to go to Australia” if given the chance, but brushed it off by saying “they are kids, they want everything”.

There are so many moving parts to this entire debacle but one thing is crystal clear: the fate of the entire 60 Minutes crew, and of Sally Faulkner, lie firmly in her ex-husbands hands.

How surreal for the families of the Channel Nine employees, who simply kissed their family goodbye and took off for a work assignment overseas – none the wiser that their entire future would ultimately be determined by a 32-year-old surfer named Ali.

Although he has said he doesn’t want to drop the charges, all hope is not lost.

“I don’t want Sal in jail, that’s for sure,” he told a Sydney radio show earlier this week.

It’s my hope that everyone ends up home, safe and sound, as soon as possible.

Where do you stand? Do you think it’s fair that Ali Elamine holds all the cards – and that Ali dropping the charges is the only way five Australians can be released from jail?

The Meddler

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