The past two weeks have seen an alarming rate of low-profile anti-Semitic activity in the United States.
Some of the incidents coincided with the Passover holiday period. Here is a summary:
- A Jewish family in California were gripped with fear after discovering their property was defaced with anti-Semitic graffiti during the Passover holiday. The father of three went outside to investigate after the power was deliberately turned off and discovered that his garage and vehicle had been spray painted with swastikas.
- Local synagogues were on high alert and police dedicated extra attention to Jewish institutions after a shot was fired into a synagogue in Tennessee on 13 April.
- A 21-year-old man is accused of throwing lit firecrackers outside a synagogue in New Jersey and yelling “Allahu Akbar” before fleeing in a car on 11 April.
- On 6 April a threatening letter was received at a Jewish centre in Colorado with a harmless white powder inside and two suspicious packages were found nearby. Another Jewish organization also received a letter with harmless white powder.
- Congregation members at a synagogue in Maryland found swastikas and vulgar words painted on the building on 7 April and spent the day removing the hateful vandalism.
- On 16 April, staff of a synagogue in Rockwell, NY, arrived to discover their annual display commemorating the Holocaust had been vandalised.
Meanwhile, President Obama condemned anti-Semitism this week during a message to commemorate Holocaust Remembrance Day.
“It is incumbent upon us to make real those timeless words, ‘Never forget. Never again.’ Yet, even as we recognize that mankind is capable of unspeakable acts of evil, we also draw strength from the survivors, the liberators, and the righteous among nations who represented humanity at its best,” Obama said in the statement.
“With their example to guide us, together we must firmly and forcefully condemn the anti-Semitism that is still far too common today. Together we must stand against bigotry and hatred in all their forms. And together, we can leave our children a world that is more just, more free, and more secure for all humankind,” he said.
CUFI – UK