On Saturday, September 20, hundreds gathered to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the founding of the 8th Day Center for Peace and Justice, a Catholic focus group which was founded on the struggles for justice, equality and human dignity. While celebrating this important milestone, the 8th Day Center, whose motto is “We who believe in Freedom cannot rest until it comes,” welcomed and honored Rasmea Odeh. Odeh is a Palestinian activist who has dedicated almost 50 years of her life to the empowerment of Arab women, first as an organizer in her homes of Palestine, Jordan and Lebanon, and then in Chicago for the past 10 years. On October 22, 2013, Rasmea was arrested by the Department of Homeland Security and charged with Unlawful Procurement of Naturalization for allegedly failing to disclose that she had been imprisoned by the Israelis over 45 years ago. The wrongful conviction in Palestine was the result of vicious physical and sexual torture by the Israelis, so Rasmea is fighting this U.S. charge in a Detroit courtroom this fall.
She committed no crime and is only under attack for being a Palestinian icon, known worldwide as a leading representative of the legitimate Palestinian struggle for self-determination, independence and the Right of Return. She needs and deserves our support. See uspcn.org and stopfbi.net for more information.
José spoke about the importance of human solidarity and human resilience in the face of political marginalization and oppression from the vantage point of the Puerto Rican struggle.