hate crimes

Asylum For Righteous Gentile’s Son

Staff Writer
An Albanian Muslim whose father was honored by Israel for saving Jews during the Holocaust, was granted political asylum last week by a judge in Boston after he testified that Islamic fundamentalists threatened him and his family if he stayed in Albania. “Thank you, thank you,” Bujar Veselaj told Immigration Judge Robin Suter after she ruled that his testimony was “extremely credible” and that he and his family had faced not only persecution but “extreme psychological torture.”

Russia Murder May Be Anti-Semitic

Staff Writer
The murder of a 22-year-old Jewish day school teacher in St. Petersburg, Russia, has raised fears in that city that it may have been an anti-Semitic attack. Dmitri Nikulinsky was found bleeding profusely from a stab wound in the neck last Saturday. But a suspect in the case reportedly said he attacked the teacher after seeing him with a former girlfriend. Meanwhile, two men have been imprisoned in Canada on charges of firebombing a Jewish school, a community center and a vehicle in Montreal in separate incidents over the past several months.

Anti-Semitic Vandalism At L.I. Synagogue

Staff Writer
Vandals scrawled a half-dozen swastikas and anti-Semitic obscenities this week on outdoor playground equipment at Congregation Etz Chaim in Commack, L.I. Rabbi Raphael Wizman, spiritual leader of the 125-family Orthodox congregation, said the swastikas and obscenities were found on the swings and on a large toy castle in the children’s playground. He said the vandals apparently scaled a 5-foot high fence that enclosed the locked playground and also broke two Plexiglass school windows.

JCC Arson Roils French Jews

Staff Writer
Jewish leaders expressed growing frustration this week with continuing anti-Semitic violence in Europe following the torching of a Jewish community center in Paris early Sunday.

The New Kristallnacht

Staff Writer
Three synagogues were firebombed, a kosher butcher shop was shot at, and a young Jewish couple was beaten — the pregnant woman so seriously that she was hospitalized. All of this happened last weekend in France, the latest in a series of more than 400 anti-Semitic attacks there in the past 18 months. But the 600,000 Jews of France are not alone in facing what observers are calling the worst anti-Semitism since World War II.

New York City Police Officers On Alert

Staff Writer
In the wake of the shooting spree at the Seattle Jewish federation last Friday that killed one and wounded five, New York City police officers have been posted at more than 100 locations, including prominent synagogues, community centers and the headquarters of UJA-Federation of New York. “The New York City Police Department understands the threat level and has increased patrols in many Jewish neighborhoods,” said David Pollock, associate executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York.

New Salvo Vs. USAF Evangelism

Staff Writer
In describing his efforts to root out what he insists is Christian proselytizing in the U.S. military, Air Force veteran Mikey Weinstein recalled a saying of Gov.-elect Eliot Spitzer's: "You don't change the world by whispering." "My book is a scream to get the world to wake up to what is happening," he said of his book, "With God on Our Side: One Man's War Against an Evangelical Coup in America's Military."

City On Edge As Holidays Near

Staff Writer
A day after the arson fire at a Hauppauge, L.I., synagogue last week, a congregant at the neighboring Dix Hills Jewish Center rushed up to the rabbi to ask about security for the High Holy Days. "He said security was being beefed up and that there was nothing to be worried about," the congregant, Elaine Greenwald, said later of her conversation with Rabbi Howard Buechler. "I trust that when the rabbi tells me that, we're doing all we can."

Suffolk Hit With Two More Bias Attacks

Staff Writer
The tires of three cars parked at the South Huntington (L.I.) Jewish Center were slashed while their owners attended pre-High Holy Day services Saturday night, and a few hours later in Centereach, L.I., other vandals scrawled swastikas and anti-Semitic and anti-black epithets on a public school.

A Worldwide Plague

Staff Writer
Yehudit Moch of Park Slope walked into St. Vincent's Hospital in Greenwich Village last week sporting a T-shirt embroidered with a large Star of David. "You'd better close your jacket," said the receptionist, who was half-Jewish. "It's not safe to be wearing that on the streets of New York."
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