Day 15 Pt. 2 – Happy Birthday Paul Konar!

29 05 2008

The hunger strike strongman celebrated his birthday in All Souls Unitarian Church tonight with an amazing show of support and solidarity for him and all the workers fighting for justice against Signal International and its recruiters.

Friends and allies from Jobs with justice, SAALT and other groups were there as Paul said what he wanted most of all:

“If I have a birthday wish, it is this: That the US government allow us to remain in this country until the end of the investigation against Signal International and all the people named in the lawsuit against those who exploited us. This is my prayer. All of you who are with me now, stay with me, and I will continue till the end.

A great friend and supporter of the hunger striker, Vijay Anand, asked Paul for his response to a “so-called community leader in DC who says Gandhi’s way doesn’t work any more — one Gandhi is not enough.”

“In my view,” Paul said, “Gandhi was an exceptional man, a man who could rise up and organize all of India. We’re not going to see someone like that again. Even if the whole world sat down to pray for his soul and thank him, it wouldn’t be enough.”

“As for what Vijay Anaand is talking about, those who say, ‘Stop your fast,’ the prayers of our families are with us on this hunger strike, of our churches. In the Convent of St. Alfonse, 140 nuns are praying for us. Their prayers are our food.

“If you ask me to stop this hunger strike, I’ll receive your advice with respect, but it’s our decision, and I’m not about to leave this strike.

“There’s a saying: People who have courage die only once. People without courage live a long time but die every day.”

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