Offering New York's bias crime law as an example, Gov. George Pataki told delegates to the international Conference on Anti-Semitism and Intolerance in Cordoba, Spain, on Wednesday that the world must step up its efforts to confront a rising tide of hatred against Jews.
"Anti-Semitism must be specifically targeted because of its unique and tragic history," Pataki said in his opening address. The governor was tapped by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to represent the United States at the conference held by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
Two 20-year-old Queens men were charged last week with scrawling "Kill All Jews on July 14" around a Fresh Meadows block.
James Connolly said in a statement to police that he took a marker from another man and wrote the message on one car. Also charged was Anthony Larosa, who has a prior record for graffiti and criminal mischief. Both men live in the vicinity of 164th Street and Jewel Avenue, where cars, bus shelters and a mailbox were defaced with slogans and swastikas.
Despite growing controversy over the radical wing of the Independence Party, Mayor Michael Bloomberg seems determined to run with its nomination, which party leaders announced on Saturday.
Earlier this year a source in Bloomberg's campaign said that because an Independence leader, Lenora Fulani, in a TV interview refused to back away from her controversial writings about Jews mass murdering people of color he would seek "a different ballot line" to supplement his GOP standing.
But this weekend Bloomberg's campaign told reporters he would accept the nod.
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) called for a "bright spotlight" on anti-Semitic messages and calls to martyrdom directed at Palestinian children that "create a new generation of terrorists" in her address to the AIPAC policy conference Tuesday in Washington. Describing a hearing with a representative of the Palestinian Authority, Clinton said she told him, "Using children as pawns in a political process is tantamount to child abuse, and we must say it has to end now."
Some 25 Jewish organizations have agreed to sign an open letter to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in support of his Gaza disengagement plan that will be published in Sunday's New York Times, according to Seymour Reich, who organized the coalition. The ad, which will coincide with Sharon's visit to the United States, calls the Gaza plan "courageous" and "possibly the most difficult of your political career," while recognizing the pain of those who will be removed from their homes.
In the aftermath of an apartment fire in Williamsburg during Passover that killed three children, the New York Board of Rabbis said it will work with the Jewish Community Relations Council and the New York Fire Department to provide tips about preventing fires from candlelighting and cooking, and ensuring that working smoke detectors are in place. In addition to screening a video in classrooms, another idea under consideration is sending home packets of batteries with schoolchildren as a reminder to check smoke alarms.
An Iran-born former Israeli was arrested on weapons charges Monday after he allegedly tried to buy grenades from undercover cops. Police said an assault rifle and ammunition were found in the Queens apartment of Joshua Hedvat, according to the New York Post. Hedvat, 57, through his attorney, Samantha Seda, said he was "set up," the Post reported.
The Pentagon will investigate allegations of religious bias against non-Christian cadets at the Air Force Academy in Colorado, the secretary of the Air Force announced this week. Some cadets complained that a professor required them to pray before a test, that a chaplain warned them that they would burn in hell if they didn't proselytize, and that a football coach hung a sign announcing "I am a member of Team Jesus Christ," the Associated Press reported. The problems came to light through an internal survey at the academy that resulted in 55 complaints.
As thousands of Jewish families prepare to feast on the finest kosher for Passover fare at hotels and resorts around the world this month, an unusual ruling in Manhattan Civil Court has paved the way for a kosher catering group to try to recover $24,050 in a breach of contract claim against a Brooklyn man.
Terrorism may have Israelis despondent and extra vigilant, but the debut of Time Out Tel Aviv shows they're not hiding in their homes.
The latest incarnation of the magazine well known in New York for its detailed chronicling of nightlife and urban recreation, Time Out Tel Aviv hit the newsstands last week. "In these times we try to keep life as normal as possible and that's what we want to give to our readers," says editor Ronit Heber. "You can call it our own little denial for us and all who read us"