At Passover security briefing, officials say al Qaeda recruits are sent to attack ‘symbols of capitalism,’
and they often act fast; Iran threat also on radar. Officials "tracking this threat very closely."
Assistant Managing Editor
The Jewish community faces no specific threat as Passover approaches, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly told local Jewish leaders on Tuesday.
But New York City faces the continued threat of an al Qaeda-linked terror attack, likely aimed at mass transit, he said at the police department’s annual pre-Passover security briefing.
“We’re tracking this threat very closely,” said the commissioner. “We rely on an alert public to be our eyes and ears.”
For years, the New York Police Department's annual pre-High Holy Days security meeting had become little more than a big coffee klatch.
With crime down and bias crimes reduced, the gathering became better known as a chance for Jewish leaders from all walks of life and all parts of the city to renew acquaintances and trade stories with each other and police brass.
Since the drill was the same every year, discussion about security became routine.
Then came Sept. 11, 2001.
Which made this year's meeting more serious than it has been for a long time.
A former Israeli paratrooper now working for the NYPD in Tel Aviv told Jewish leaders here on Monday that Hamas splinter groups are a growing security threat, struggling to upset a delicate ceasefire with Israel.