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“Jews of Los Angeles Are No Longer Safe”: Protest at California Synagogue Turns Violent

Pro-Palestinian organizers who gathered in front of a synagogue to protest an Israeli real estate fair clashed with Jewish counterprotesters | Holocaust memorial nonprofit: “Attacks against Jews have become normalized”

בית חב"ד בפיקו רוברטסון, השכונה שבה פרצה האלימות (צילום: Cbl62, ויקיפדיה)
The Chabad House in Pico-Robertson, the heavily Jewish Los Angeles neighborhood where the violence broke out. (Photo: Cbl62, Wikipedia)
By Davar

Violent confrontations broke out in front of the Adas Torah synagogue in Los Angeles on Sunday after a pro-Palestinian crowd gathered to protest an Israeli real estate fair in the synagogue. According to Los Angeles Magazine, some of the protesters were wearing symbols of Hamas and Hezbollah. A video taken the day shows a woman being beaten on the street and an observer being sprayed with pepper spray.

“The Jews of Los Angeles are no longer safe,” the United Jewish Coalition said in a statement. Sunday’s events “brought to life the darkest nightmare many of us hoped we would never witness on American soil,” the group said. Rabbi Hertzel Illulian, who leads the JEM Community Center near Adas Torah, told KCAL news that the violence that took place in front of the synagogue “doesn’t belong here.” “I don’t think the Jewish would go in front of a mosque or the Christian people would go in front of a mosque to do such a thing,” he said.

“Today’s violence in the Pico-Robertson neighborhood was abhorrent, and blocking access to a place of worship is unacceptable,” Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass said in a statement. “I want to be clear that Los Angeles will not be a harbor for antisemitism and violence,” she added, noting that she had called on the police to increase their presence in the neighborhood, which has one of Los Angeles’ highest concentrations of Jews, as well as in places of worship across the city.

Sacha Roytman Dratwa, CEO of the Combat Antisemitism Movement, said of Sunday’s events, “The violent demonstration at a Los Angeles synagogue, coming on the same day as shooting attack outside a synagogue in Russia, and following other recent shocking events in France and elsewhere across the globe, marked a further increase in the already unprecedented levels of antisemitism Jewish communities worldwide are coping with. This is an important reminder of the reason why we must come together and fight on a daily basis against all who perpetrate, support, or justify acts of terrorism and violence against Jews. We expect authorities at the national, state, and municipal levels to protect their Jewish constituents and not leave them to face these antisemitic threats alone.”

March of the Living, an international Holocaust memorial nonprofit, said in a statement, “The attack on the Adas Torah synagogue in Los Angeles and the targeting of Jews there, as well as the attacks on synagogues in Russia, the shocking rape of a Jewish girl in France last week, and the daily threats to Jews worldwide, all lead to one grim conclusion: Jewish blood is cheap. Antisemitism has become normalized and attacks against Jews have become normalized.”

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