Anti-Israel activists gathered Sunday inside the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place in Chicago to hear a discussion featuring convicted Palestinian terrorist Rasmeah Odeh. Unbeknownst to Odeh and the attendees of the Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) conference, while she was receiving a standing ovation, a memorial service for her victims was in progress just a few floors above.
Being remembered were Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner, two friends who had been studying at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, until their lives ended in February 1969 in a Jerusalem supermarket bombing masterminded by Odeh for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terror group.
Odeh’s star has been on the rise in left-wing political circles. In January, she shared a stage with Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) during an immigration travel ban protest at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport. Last month, she was a co-organizer for the “Day Without a Woman” march.
When the pro-Israel education organization StandWithUs inquired with Hyatt about renting space to hold a multi-faith memorial service for Odeh’s victims, the hotel responded, “Your request has been denied,” claiming it needed permission from JVP.
Refusing to take no for an answer, StandWithUs Midwest Director Peggy Shapiro took matters into her own hands.