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Miami Beach resident accused of plotting to burn down condo to “kill all the Jews”

Mr Walter Stopler, aged 72 was arrested by police in Miami on Thursday 12th July, after h he allegedly tried to burn down his condominium building in order to “kill all the Jews” according to the police report. Mr Stopler now reportedly faces charges of attempted arson and attempted murder.

Mr Stopler, angry after having recently been served eviction notice, allegedly told another resident that he planned to pour gasoline down the drain line of the building, ignite it and then padlock the building’s fire hoses to stop firefighters from extinguishing the flames.

Miami Beach police officer Ernesto Rodriguez stated that officers received a credible tip that Mr Stopler was planning to burn down The Pavilion residences on Collins Avenue. When the police arrived, they found Mr Stopler in the parking garage of the building, with two plastic containers filled with fuel in a shopping cart. A further eight plastic containing fuel were found in a garbage chute dumpster.

Investigators found that the gasoline had been poured down the chute from the 15th floor – the floor on which Mr Stopler resided. Upon being found with the gasoline, Mr Stopler told the police that “I bought the gas to make a small BBQ”, according to the arrest affidavit.

A storage room was later found by detectives holding 27 additional containers filled with various substances such as gasoline, sulphur powder and potassium nitrate.

The state attorney’s office is to decide whether to pursue further charges against Mr Stopler of a hate crime.


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Three men of Arab origin jailed over Swedish Synagogue firebomb attack, but none will serve more than 2 years

Three Palestinian and Syrian migrants have been jailed following an arson attack on a Gothenburg Synagogue which Everyday Antisemitism reported on in October, following a protest against Trump’s decision to move the US Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.

The men were convicted in Gothenburg District Court on Monday. Two of the men were handed 2 year sentences, whereas the youngest was sentenced to 15 months. The three are between 19 and 24 years of age. One has had an asylum application rejected and will be deported after his jail sentence.

The Judge said that the trio acted with “the clear goal of threatening, harming, and violating members of the synagogue and the Jewish community more generally”. However, the sentences for what essentially amounts to a terrorist attack on Jews in Sweden, seem far too short given the severity and malice of the crime.

The attack was participated in by up to 20 people, though as far as we can tell no other charges have been brought.

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Holocaust survivor found stabbed to death in burning apartment in what appears to be antisemitic murder

An 85-year-old Jewish Holocaust survivor has been found dead in her apartment in Paris, having been stabbed 11 times and her apartment having been set ablaze.

The attack took place in her apartment in  Avenue Philippe Auguste.

National Bureau for Vigilance Against Antisemitism have confirmed that suicide has been ruled out and that a suspect is being questioned in relation to what is almost certainly an antisemitic attack.

An attack of this nature is yet another escalation in what is becoming an intolerable situation for Jews in the French capital. That such a fate could befall a Holocaust survivor in twenty-first century Europe is an indictment of contemporary French society, where antisemitism has become an accepted part of life for the Jews who have decided to remain in the country.  If what is suspected about the motives of this attack are confirmed, it will verify what many have known for some time now; France has become inhospitable to Jewish life.

Last year, Jewish pensioner Sarah Halimi was beaten by her Islamist neighbour and thrown off the balcony in her own home to her death three stories below. The authorities had initially refused to label the attack antisemitic, despite reports that she had been subject to verbal antisemitic abuse by her assailant prior to the incident. The matter is awaiting trial and will be prosecuted as a hate crime.

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Jewish school in Djerba, Tunisia firebombed in drive-by attack

A Jewish school in Djerba, Tunisia, was attacked with a firebomb late on Tuesday in what police suspect to be an antisemitic attack.

The attackers threw the firebomb from a moving vehicle. Whilst some damage was caused to the building, thankfully nobody was hurt.

Police suspect that the attack intentionally exploited reduced police presence, as police resources were diverted to securing anti-Government protests.

Djerba, an Island, is home to a small Jewish community that has been in the country for over two thousand years. The island is home to Africa’s oldest Synagogue.

Since 1948 the Jewish population of the country has shrunk from around 100,000 to barely over a thousand.


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Suspected arson at Kosher supermarket in Paris on anniversary of antisemitic terror attack

A Kosher supermarket in Paris was hit by what police suspect to be an arson attack, three years to the day after a terrorist attack at a Kosher supermarket in which four were killed.

Promo & Destock store in Créteil suffered extensive damage to the shop front and interior in the fire.

Last week the store was reportedly vandalized with Swastika graffiti.

Whilst police say they do not have a motive for the attack, the preceding Swastika graffiti and the significance of the date on which the fire was started indicate a clear possibility that this is an antisemitic incident.

The area has a substantial Jewish population. Local community leader Albert Elharrar told the media “there’s a link between the graffiti and the fire. It’s clear that they came for no other reason but to attack a kosher shop on the day of the commemorations”.


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Chapel at Jewish cemetery firebombed in Sweden, the second attack of its kind in a week

Swedish Police have announced that they are investigating an arson attack at a Jewish chapel at a cemetery in Malmo.

The attack took place on Monday, but has only just come to our attention.

Two firebombs were thrown at the building, but appear to have caused little damage. From an image of the exterior of the building, it appears that they bounced off the wall and burned out on the ground in front of the chapel.

Earlier this week we were among the first English language sources to report a similar incident in the city, where 20 masked men attacked a Synagogue in Malmo with firebombs, leaving those inside, who were attending a youth event, to take refuge terrified in the building’s basement.

After yet another terrifying escalation of antisemitic violence in Sweden, and in Malmo in particular, we restate our calls for enhanced police protection for Jewish communities in the city, where Jews are subject to the constant threat of antisemitic violence.


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20 masked men attack Gothenburg Synagogue with firebombs

A Jewish community in Gothenburg, Sweden, has been left in shock after around 20 masked men attacked their Synagogue yesterday night at around 10pm.

The Synagogue had been hosting a social event for Jewish students. When the Police arrived, the attendees had taken refuge in the Synagogue’s basement.

A spokesman for the local police said that “there are several molotov cocktails that have been thrown against the synagogue”. Thankfully, the building itself did not catch fire and nobody was seriously hurt.

Despite the shocking nature of the incident, the police do not seem to have any leads. In an online statement they commented that they “do not know much more than there are several molotov cocktails that have been thrown against the synagogue”.

Whilst the identity of the attackers is unknown, some have speculated that the attack could be linked to a march against Donald Trump’s policy on Jerusalem which took place earlier that day. Nonetheless, it could also easily be an attack from the far right.

Such an attack essentially amounts to terrorism against Jews in Europe. Unfortunately, with antisemitism reaching terrifying levels in some parts of Sweden, escalations of violence such as this are increasingly unsurprising. Thankfully the Synagogue was protected by its security staff who alerted the police and kept attendees safe, but this incident highlights the important of sufficient security being provided to Jewish communities.


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Paris Jewish family saved from “antisemitic” arson attack by loyal family dog

Members of a Paris Jewish family perhaps owe their lives to their vigilant dog, who saved them from an arson attack.

The family was awoken by barking in the night. When they investigated, they discovered that their front door had been set ablaze. They discovered their apartment rapidly filling with smoke.

Police say that someone had doused the door with a highly flammable liquid. The family have said they suspect a neighbour who has made antisemitic and extremist comments.

Last week the family had their car torched.

The National Bureau for Vigilance Against Antisemitism commented that “the incident confirms BNVCA’s observation that antisemitic acts that began as targeting property belonging to Jews (synagogues, schools, community centers) or as assaults on people on the street have evolved into attacks on Jews inside their own homes”.

If further investigation confirms that this attack did have an antisemitic motive, which given the current circumstances in Paris and the targeted nature of the attack would not be surprising, it will indeed represent yet another escalation in the French capital which looks increasingly dire for the country’s Jewish community.

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Thug hurls molotov cocktail at Jewish centre in Moscow in failed Arson attack

CCTV captured footage of a thug attempting to set a Jewish centre in Moscow ablaze with a Molotov cocktail.

The footage, which can be viewed here, shows the thug throwing a Molotov cocktail at a building belonging to the Federation of Jewish Communities in Russia on Obrazov Street, Moscow.

Thankfully the projectile bounces off the building so there were no injuries and no substantial property damage.

The identity of the vandal is currently unknown.


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Attempted arson attack At Ukrainian Synagogue follows threatening Antisemitic graffiti

A firebomb was hurled at a Synagogue in the Ukrainian City of Lviv, according to reports from the local media.

The firebomb was thrown at the Synagogue on June 30th. It missed the window and burned out on the exterior of the building, lightly damaging the exterior, but thankfully not harming the interior of the building or anyone inside it.

The firebomb attack follows antisemitic graffiti appearing on another building belonging to the local Jewish community. This graffiti read “down with Jewish power” and “remember July 1st”, a reference to a large pogrom in Kielce, Poland, in 1946. July 1st was the date when a Polish boy went missing in Kielce, something that was later blamed on the small Jewish community, a group of around 200 Holocaust survivors, around 40 of whom were then murdered.

Whilst it is often easy to write off antisemitic graffiti, which is remarkably common, an incident such as this demonstrates how antisemitic graffiti is a warning that more serious incidents are possible as antisemitism is allowed to flourish. Thankfully nobody was hurt in these incidents, but with antisemitism steadily on the increase in the Ukraine, with far-right ultra-Nationalist groups growing, the risk of further serious incidents appears to be very high.


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Police interrupt man allegedly attempting to set French Synagogue ablaze

Police in Epinay Sur Seine, a suburb of Paris, have allegedly caught a man who was in the process of setting a Synagogue on fire.

The alleged attempted arson occurred on the 24th of June. The suspect had pushed several bins against the Synagogue and had lit them on fire, but was interrupted by the police.

The Synagogue and adjacent buildings were damaged by the flames, but not severely.

Representatives from the Jewish community have praised the Police for their swift action, but unfortunately this is just another example of the increasing antisemitism in France.

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Arson attack on Jewish artist’s “iconic” Mitzvah bus in New York

A bus owned by Leviticus Schieber, an artist who uses the name Leviticus for his work, has been torched by an arsonist in New York.

The bus, which has become somewhat of a Jewish cultural icon in New York, was found burned out and with smashed windows in the very early hours of Tuesday morning.

The bus started out life as a school bus, and has been re purposed by the artist with colourful paintings and Jewish symbols as a portable art studio. It has been featured in music videos and on television, and is a familiar sight around New York, particularly in the Crown Heights area, which has a substantial Jewish population.

The police are considering the possibility that the incident is a hate crime. Mr Schieber says that his bus has been targeted in the past.

There is reportedly CCTV footage of a suspect.

There is a fundraising page seeking to restore the bus.

Last month we reported that a Jewish school bus had been targeted by an arsonist in the city. As far as we can tell, no arrests have been made in connection with that incident yet.

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Police hunt for arsonist who torched Jewish school bus, religious books in New York

Police in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York are searching for a suspect who set fire to a Jewish

school bus.

The incident occurred last month.

The perpetrator broke into the bus through its emergency door and set fire to the interior of the bus before fleeing. He torched several religious books.

The bus has Hebrew writing on it, so whilst the police have been cautious to describe it as an antisemitic incident, there would seem to be good reason to believe so.

Book burning was one of the most infamous aspects of the Nazi regime. The Nazis burnt books written by Jews, as well as others they considered to be “degenerate”.

A news report covering the incident can be viewed here.


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Anti-Zionist attempts to set pro-Israel campaigner on fire in Berlin

The Berlin Police are conducting a manhunt after a pro-Israel marcher faced an attempt to set her on fire early this week at a march to commemorate Israeli soldiers who have been killed in combat, and terror victims.

The attack happened when the woman, a German-Israeli citizen, was wearing an Israel flag over her shoulders. The assailant allegedly attempted to set the flag ablaze, but given that the victim was wearing the flag, this is more than just a case of property damage or arson, themselves criminal acts, and is instead a clear attempted act of violence.

Despite the attack, the woman wishes to continue pro-Israel activism.

A physical attack on a person for merely displaying the Israeli flag, the flag of the country where half of the world’s Jews live, is clearly antisemitic, as it is a case of “applying double standards” to the State of Israel that are not applied to any other nation.

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German Court rules that attempt to set fire to Synagogue amounts to criticism of Israel

A Court in the German city Wuppertall upheld a previous decision that the attempt to burn a Synagogue was merely an act of protest against Israel’s actions in the 2014 Gaza War.

The attempted arson was committed by three German Palestinians during the 2014 War. They hurled Molotov cocktails through the windows of the Shul.

The court of first instance said that the acts were an attempt to bring “attention to the Gaza conflict”, and did not constitute antisemitism.

31-year-old Mohamad E., the 26 year-old Ismail A. and the 20-year-old Mohammad A. were given suspended sentences.

Wuppertal’s Synagogue was destroyed during the 1939 Nazi pogrom Kristallnacht, and the new building suffered 800 Euros of damage from the attack.

Thankfully, nobody was hurt in this arson attack, and the alert was raised by a boy who saw the flames from his house.

Volker Beck said that the judgment was in error, saying the “attack on the synagogue was motivated by antisemitism”, asking “what do Jews in Germany have to do with the Middle East conflict? Every bit as much as Christians, non-religious people or Muslims in Germany, namely, absolutely nothing. The ignorance of the judiciary toward antisemitism is for many Jews in Germany especially alarming”

Mr Beck is entirely correct in his analysis. The International Definition of Antisemitism states that “holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel”. It is beyond belief that an attempt to set fire to a Synagogue has been minimised as merely “criticism of Israel” by a Court of Law. If even arson attacks against Jewish communal buildings can be passed off as just a case of political protest taken too far, then almost all antisemitism can be minimised as related to Israel in some way. This incident thus shows the urgent need for Western Governments and their institutions to adopt the International Definition of Antisemitism, which we have been pressuring for for a long time, and to ensure that it is understood and applied consistently.

You can read the International Definition of Antisemitism here.



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Jewish family’s cars set on fire, “Jews die” graffiti outside their house

A Jewish family have had their cars set on fire and had antisemitic graffiti spray-painted outside their house, in Burien, Washington.

“Jews die” and “14/88” were spray-painted onto their garage door. 14/88 is a reference to the 14 words, a creed used by neo-Nazis, and the number “88” which is a numerical code for “Heil Hitler”.

There was also Swastika graffiti.

The family have no idea who committed this crime, but are concerned for their safety and, unsurprisingly, expect it to be an intentional hate crime.

Police are treating this as an arson investigation. It is unknown whether they are also treating it as a hate crime. These acts are blatant acts of intimidation against an innocent Jewish family and must be treated with the appropriate severity by the Police.

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Arab arsonists set fire to prayer books in Gush Etzion

Arab arsonists have set fire to prayer books in a synagogue in the town of Givat Sorek in Gush Etzion.

Source: NRG