Goodbye and Good Riddance to Rasmea Odeh
Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh is about to be deported to Jordan, after US District Judge Gershwin A. Drain formalized terms of Odeh’s plea agreement on Thursday afternoon in Detroit.
It was not immediately clear when Odeh will leave the United States, but it’s not expected that there will be problems getting her to go to Jordan, where she remains a citizen. It is now up to the office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement to arrange her departure.
Odeh was convicted of naturalization fraud in 2014, but an appeal led to a new trial. She opted to plead guilty in March and agree to deportation in exchange for a promise of no jail time. She was also fined $1,000.
Odeh has become a national icon for anti-Israel forces throughout the United States and beyond. She is embraced as a hero of Palestinian resistance, and as a purported victim of an unjust, racist prosecution. According to Detroit Free Press reporter Niraj Warikoo, Judge Drain had to cut Odeh off repeatedly during the sentencing hearing because she used her time to address the court in order to attack Israel.
Odeh’s prosecution stems from her failure to disclose her terrorist past to US immigration officials. While living in the Middle East, she willingly confessed to her role in a 1969 Jerusalem grocery store bombing that killed college students, Leon Kanner and Edward Joffe. She now claims that the confession came only after she endured weeks of brutal torture. But there is nothing to corroborate that claim. In fact, the records that do exist indicate that she admitted her guilt the day after her arrest. Israel investigators searched her bedroom and found explosives similar to those used in the grocery store and in a separate attack on the British consulate.
Odeh lied to US immigration officials when she applied for a visa in 1995, and again in 2004, when she applied to become a citizen by saying that she had never been arrested, convicted or imprisoned. Had she truthfully disclosed her conviction for a 1969 terrorist bombing in Jerusalem, she never would have been allowed in to the United States, let alone naturalized.
Odeh claimed that her lies to immigration officials resulted from post-traumatic stress resulting from this unproven torture. But the guilty plea that she signed clearly indicates that this claim is bogus.
Odeh has constantly told supporters that the immigration charge was “phony,” and blamed “the racist nature of the justice system in this country” for giving her no choice but to plead guilty. She failed to explain how such a racist justice system granted her a new trial that she chose not to have.
As Cornell University law professor William Jacobson detailed in our interview with him, every aspect of Odeh’s story falls apart upon the slightest scrutiny.
Yet, as our video series, “Spinning a Terrorist Into a Victim” shows, Odeh’s dedicated supporters accept her every false claim, and stand by her. For them, hating Israel is more important than determining what’s true and false, or considering the morality of latching their cause to an unrepentant terrorist killer.
A few dozen Odeh supporters gathered outside the US District Courthouse in Detroit on Thursday, chanting the same slogans about community leaders being “under attack,” and saying that “Rasmea is welcome here.”
But not legally.
Odeh walked in the footsteps of other Palestinian terrorists who managed to hide in plain sight in the United States for years, aided by lies and the gullibility of Israel-haters.
For instance, Sami Al-Arian is hailed as a free speech advocate and a peaceful proponent of the Palestinian cause. In reality, he was a member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s leadership, during the time that it used Iranian money to kill Jews. A Federal judge deemed him a “master manipulator.” He was deported to Turkey in early 2015.
The Dallas Morning News faced picket lines and faux websites because it dared to expose a network of Hamas supporters, including political leader Mousa Abu Marzook, in its community. When an arm of that network, the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), was prosecuted for illegally routing $12 million to Hamas, well-meaning but ignorant protesters argued that “feeding widows and orphans is not a crime.”
It isn’t. But sending money to a designated terrorist group is, and the record shows that this is what HLF did. Marzook, who created a network of Hamas-support organizations that included the HLF, a propaganda arm called the Islamic Association for Palestine, and a think tank, was deported to Jordan 20 years ago — and remains a senior Hamas official.
Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hamas share certain goals and values. They each want to destroy Israel, and they each use violence and terrorism to kill Israeli civilians.
Rasmea Odeh bombed that grocery store before either group was created. Therefore, America has lost a pioneer in Palestinian terrorism. Take note of who grieves for that loss more than the loss of life that she caused.