20
August , 2018
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From Hatem Abudayyeh

In a major development, attorneys for Palestinian community leader Rasmea Odeh filed a motion July 14th, calling for Judge Paul D. Borman to recuse himself from the case. The supporting brief argues that Borman, as a life-long and dedicated supporter of Israel, cannot play the “neutral and detached” role that the law requires.

A spurious report from the Associated Press irresponsibly presumes that the defense is bringing this motion because Judge Borman is an American Jew.  Odeh and her attorneys, including Michael Deutsch, who is an American Jew himself, deny this, noting that the motion and supporting brief extensively document Borman’s close ties to the State of Israel, never once mentioning his religion.  The AP article has been picked up across the country, and the national Rasmea Defense Committee demands a retraction.

Odeh has pled not guilty to Unlawful Procurement of Naturalization, a charge alleging that she failed to mention, in her 2004 application for U.S. citizenship, that she was arrested in Palestine 45 years ago, and tried in an Israeli military court that “convicts” 99.74% of Palestinians who come before it.  Odeh was physically and sexually tortured into a confession by Israeli prison authorities in 1969.

The motion describes how this is important to her defense: “The defendant’s case directly raises issues about the legality of the continuing 47 year belligerent occupation of the West Bank by the State of Israel and the State’s policy of sanctioning the systematic torture of Palestinian detainees by the Israeli military and security police.”

In the papers filed with the court this week, attorneys Deutsch and James Fennerty describe Judge Borman’s long history of support for Israel, including fund raising for, and donating millions of dollars of his own money to the state.  They argue: “Clearly, one who has been a life-long supporter and promoter of Israel and has deep ties to the State of Israel spanning over 50 years, who no doubts believes that Israel is a great democracy and protector of human rights, cannot be ‘reasonably’ said to be impartial when these claims of torture and illegality are raised by a Palestinian defendant.

“Further, it is reasonable to conclude that as a result of this Court’s many trips to Israel, and its active support and substantial efforts in fund raising for the State of Israel, that this Court has ‘personal knowledge of disputed evidentiary facts concerning this case.’”

According to one of the defense committee’s spokespeople, Hatem Abudayyeh, “This motion is about trying to get Rasmea a fair trial.  Borman’s bias is clear.  He’s had a life-long association with explicitly pro-Israel organizations, but we also uncovered that he has donated thousands of dollars to the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces.  It is exactly the conduct and truthfulness of the IDF that is at issue in this case.  A ‘Friend’ of the IDF can hardly be seen as unbiased.

“Winning this case is not limited to a legal strategy,” Abudayyeh continued.  “Thousands of people from across the country are supporting and fighting for Rasmea Odeh. We are urging the government to drop the charges against her.  If they don’t, we are mobilizing to fill the courtroom every day of the trial.”

The trial is set for September 8 in Detroit.

www.uspcn.org

www.stopfbi.net

For more information, contact:  Hatem Abudayyeh, 773.301.4108, hatem@aaan.org

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in this Letters to Editors are those of the writer and not CopyLine Magazine.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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