From: Magda I. Rosa-Rios
Sent: Wednesday, September 28, 2005 11:08 AM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS; HCLO-EVERYONE
Subject: Vigil for Filiberto Ojeda
New York Latino Journal announces a special event of Puerto Rican and Latino solidarity in New York
A Vigil for the Puerto Rican Revolutionary Filiberto Ojeda Ríos
The Members of the Puerto Rican and Latino Community of New York City, in solidarity with the ProLibertad Freedom Campaign, the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party of New York, and the New York Committee of the Puerto Rican Independence Party
A VIGIL TO REMEMBER FILIBERTO OJEDA RIOS
Wed., Sept. 28, 2005 @ 6 p.m.
Julia de Burgos Cultural Center
1680 Lexington Avenue (bet. E. 105 & 106th Streets) El Barrio (6 train to 103rd Str.)
Program will include:
–testimonials from people returning from Puerto Rico –update from community leaders –elected officials on the call for an investigation –open mike for reflection –anouncement of work meeting –distribution of informational handout
A FALLEN MAN, A RISING NATION:
THE DEATH OF FILIBERTO OJEDA RÍOS AND
THE LIFE OF THE PUERTO RICAN STRUGGLE
THE CAMPAIGN TO EDUCATE OUR COMMUNITY AND BEYOND
The Puerto Rican and Latino community cannot rely on much of the media — especially the English-language media — to communicate all of the dimensions of the killing of Machetero Filiberto Ojeda Ríos. So we will rely on ourselves. We must play an active part in informing and raising awareness in order to better inform and prepare our younger generation.
— Have conversations with neighbors and family, at church and at home.
— Use the Internet and other resources to learn more about the history and the continuing struggle of the Puerto Rican community.
— Send out emails to everyone you know.
— Reproduce this handout and circulate it.
On Friday, September 23rd, 2005, Filiberto Ojeda Ríos, a Puerto Rican independence leader, and leader of the militant group known as Los Macheteros, was hunted down by U.S. Federal Agents in the western town of Hormigueros, Puerto Rico, and killed. The Federal Bureau of Investigation claims they came to “arrest” him, while Federal investigators also estimate more than 100 shots were fired by the agents. Of those 100 or more shots, one hit the Macheteros leader, puncturing his lung. The Federal agents came and arrested his life partner, Elma Beatriz Rosado Barbosa, and left Filiberto to bleed to death, as agents remained outside, awaiting orders.
Filiberto Ojeda Ríos was wanted by the F.B.I. for allegedly being involved in the Wells Fargo 1983 robbery in Hartford, Connecticut, where 7.2 million dollars were stolen, and allegedly used to fund the independence movement and buy toys, books, and medicine for poor children in Puerto Rico, Cuba and the Dominican Republic.
As of yet, no official word from the Federal Government has been made regarding the date they chose to hunt down and kill Filiberto Ojeda Ríos, September 23, otherwise known as El Grito de Lares, (the Cry of Lares) the most celebrated day in Puerto Rico’s independence and nationalist movement.
WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT:
— El Grito de Lares, (the Cry of Lares), was the Puerto Rican revolt against Spanish rule in Puerto Rico which occurred on September 23, 1868, in the town of Lares, Puerto Rico. This uprising was lead by Dr. Ramón Emeterio Betances (considered the “father” of Puerto Rico) and Segundo Ruíz Belvis, who on January 6, 1868 founded the Comité Revolucionario de Puerto Rico (Revolutionary Committee of Puerto Rico) from their exile in the Dominican Republic. The revolt was defeated by the Spaniards, but has lived on as the first significant struggle toward a free Puerto Rican Republic.
— There are serious questions as to how the FBI handled this – reports of how they fired over 100 shots into his home, how they let Filiberto bleed to death, how this was deliberately staged on El Grito de Lares…questions about why local police in Puerto Rico were not informed and how the orders to hunt down and kill Filiberto came straight from Washington D.C. The Governor of Puerto Rico, along with the insular Senate and House of Representatives, as well as U.S. Members of Congress José Serrano, Nydia Velásquez and Luis Gutiérrez have all called for an in-depth investigation on the matter. (Congressman Serrano sits on the House Appropriations Committee as a member of the Subcommittee on Justice)
— The U.S. Government has a documented history of persecuting, disrupting and hunting down members of the Puerto Rican independence movement. A systematic effort was initiated to create fear in people who believe that Puerto Rico has a right to be its own country. This U.S.
Government initiative to suppress the
independence movement and intervene in Puerto Rico’s media and insular government has been disclosed and admitted to through the Freedom of Information Act and the efforts of U.S.
Congressman Jose Serrano in retrieving thousands of previously classified files from the F.B.I.
and making them public through the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College and the University of Puerto Rico.
— Isn’t Puerto Rico free already? The United States federal government controls interstate trade, foreign commerce (trade with other nations), customs, aviation and navigation, immigration, currency and banking (Puerto Rico is limited in its power to establish a monetary and banking policy in tune with its economic development. Puerto Rico cannot regulate the monetary supply in accordance with its specific economic condition), all military and naval matters (thousands of Puerto Ricans have died in the U.S. Military but they are not allowed to vote for their Commander-in-Chief — the U.S.
President), radio, television, and Internet communications, mining and minerals (including oil refineries), highways, the postal system, social security, and other areas generally controlled by the federal government in the United States. United States courts have the final say over the constitutionality of Puerto Rican laws. Puerto Rico may not conclude treaties with other sovereign states, although it does belong to some international bodies, but as an observer only.
For more information, visit online:
and the following key words in http://www.Wikipedia.org:
Filiberto Ojeda Ríos
Grito de Lares
From “The Hunt for Puerto Rican Independence Leaders ,” an upcoming essay in the NY Latino Journal by Miguel Guzmán:
“If we are to call Mr. Ojeda Ríos a criminal, let us do so in the context of Puerto Rico politics, especially as we reflect on former Governor Pedro Rosello’s 8-year administration (1993-2001) of the Island, which resulted in more than 40 convictions and arrests, and a whole lot more than 7.2 million dollars stolen, lost, or — that favorite word out of Washington — “misappropriated.”