المركز العربي للمصادر والتنظيم (AROC) يهنئكم بمناسبة يوم المرأة العالمي
في هذه المناسبة نود تذكير أعضاء الجالية برفع مستوى الوعي بخصوص رسمية عودة؛ امرأة عربية مهاجرة في عمر الـ 66 عاما، والتي تم استهدافها من قبل الحكومة الأمريكية لكونها فلسطينية قبعت في سجون الإحتلال قبل أربعون عاما ولكونها ناشطة عربية في مدينة شيكاغو.
On March 8th we commemorate the legacy and struggles of women around the world. And today, AROC asks our members, friends, and allies to dedicate time to raising awareness about the case of Rasmea Odeh.
Rasmea Odeh is a long time community activist and former Palestinian political prisoner who is currently being targeted by the US Federal government as part of their ongoing persecution of political dissent.
On October 22nd, Rasmea was arrested by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on a fabricated charge of committing immigration fraud decades ago. She is now facing up to 10 years in prison, the revocation of her US citizenship and deportation. This outrageous attempt by DHS to intimidate an elderly Palestinian immigrant woman using spurious charges is a clear attack on her social justice and community organizing work and, hence, an attack on us all. Her case is not an isolated incident but is tied to an escalation of political repression over the past decade and rooted in the historical repression of people of color communities and political dissent including COINTELPRO and various “red scares” of the 20th century.
US, Israel and Global Repression
An activist, and advocate of immigrant and women’s rights, and the associate director of the Arab American Action Network (AAAN) in Chicago, Rasmea is being charged with immigration fraud for allegedly not mentioning that she was arrested by the Israeli military over 40 years ago. This is the same Israeli military that has imprisoned over 20% of the Palestinian population, and routinely tortures and violates the human rights of the current 7,500 Palestinian political prisoners. And now she is being targeted by the US government. A government that has reached record number deportations, is bolstering surveillance and militarization of communities, imprisoning more people than any other country in the world, while turning a blind eye to the ongoing extrajudicial killings and policing of the poor communities of color.
Rasmea: a Leading Arab American Community Organizer
Rasmea has dedicated her life to struggling against these systems of injustice and defending the rights of those impacted by them. For over 50 years, Rasmea has been involved in the women’s movement in Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine and Chicago. In Chicago, she has empowered hundreds of immigrant women through programs aimed at addressing literacy, immigrant rights, racial profiling, intergenerational trauma, and gender violence. As a recognized leading figure in the women’s and immigrant rights movement, she has worked across communities to build solidarity and community power.And today,
at the age of 66, she finds herself yet again facing the brutality of a system designed to criminalize those who dare to speak up and organize for a more equitable and just society.
As a grassroots community organization committed to addressing the social, political and economic impacts of racism, particularly anti-Arab racism, AROC stands shoulder to shoulder with Rasmea as she challenges the judicial system and fights for her right to lead a dignified life rooted in the well-being of her community.
We call on our members, allies and partners to organize events to raise awareness about her case, donate to her legal fund and draft statements of solidarity to send a message loud and clear–our communities will not be intimated and will continue to challenge injustice everywhere!