Jewish police officers this week are standing firmly behind one of their own who breached the so-called "blue wall of silence" in the Abner Louima trial.
"He said what he saw, and that's what a cop is supposed to do," said Sgt. Eric Finkelstein, president of the Shomrim Society, of Det. Eric Turetzky.
Shomrim represents 2,800 officers, civilian employees and retirees of the NYPD.
He may be trailing in Israel, but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu won a straw poll of sorts in Brooklyn this week. Along a Middle Eastern shopping strip of Brooklyn's Kings Highway on Monday, native Israelis overwhelmingly gave the Likud incumbent a vote of confidence.
"I am 100 percent for Netanyahu," said Oded Hakabyov, a native of Eilat, now working as a contractor, as he waited for his wife at the Cholon Market. "If Barak wins, Arafat is going to win," said Hakabyov, referring to Labor Party candidate Ehud Barak and Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat.
Along the peaceful streets of Riverdale on a sunny summer afternoon, signs of Jewish life are everywhere. Kosher shops and restaurants abound on Riverdale and Johnson avenues, and seven synagogues and the Riverdale Y are bursting with activity in this suburban-flavored, hillside Bronx enclave overlooking the Hudson.
Yet synagogues, kosher shopping or even housing stock do not hold the key to Riverdale's Jewish future, community leaders say, as much as a single unremarkable building on the corner of Independence Avenue and 237th Street: Middle School 141.
Her campaign for Senate may be in deep freeze while Hillary Rodham Clinton toys with her own campaign, but Rep. Nita Lowey insists she holds no grudges. "I respect Hillary Clinton's decision-making process," she told Political Memos in a recent interview. "In the meantime, I'm doing what I have to do, should I be the candidate."
Think of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the world's most notorious killing ground, and most people will picture emaciated Jews destined for the gas chambers.
Few will recall that on Oct. 7, 1944, inmates smuggled gunpowder into the camp and destroyed one of its crematoria, consuming three Nazi officers in the fires they had intended for Jews.
The death camp at Treblinka is notorious for having killed between 700,000 and 1 million Jews. But the story of a 1943 revolt by some 600 inmates has barely been told.
The ongoing debate over police brutality, which has gripped the city like few issues in recent memory, should be a matter of serious concern to the Jewish community, says a key Jewish councilman.
"We want a city that runs well, that people feel is operating in the interests of everybody," says Sheldon Leffler (D-Northern Queens). "Otherwise we have the potential for unrest, for explosion, for striking out."
A congressional race that is nearly two years away already is making waves in the Crown Heights Jewish community, as two of its political allies head for a 2000 showdown.
Rep. Major Owens, who has represented District 11 in central Brooklyn for 16 years, is likely to face a Democratic primary challenge next year from his former protege, Councilwoman Una Clarke. Both have been strong supporters of Jewish causes, leaving activists wondering whom to support, or in a third option, whether to run a Jewish candidate.
Anti-Semitic incidents in the United States rose slightly in 1998, with a 2 percent increase from the previous year, according to the latest audit compiled by the Anti-Defamation League. The annual report attributes the rise to an increase in vandalism against Jewish institutions and property, which drove the total number of incidents to 1,611 in 42 states and the district of Columbia. In 1997, there were 1,571 incidents recorded. New York continues to lead the nation in anti-Semitic incidents, despite a 15 percent decrease to 324 incidents from 380 in 1997.
With his stinging critique, Judge Guston Reichbach placed himself at the center of a fierce debate in the Orthodox community over how best to police th
Special to the Jewish Week
At the sentencing Tuesday of a bar mitzvah tutor and social worker convicted of sexually molesting two boys in Brooklyn, a New York State Supreme Court Judge lashed out at the offender’s Orthodox community for “a communal attitude that seems to impose greater opprobrium on the victims than the perpetrator.”