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Swastikas in Borough Park

“We go about our lives as if anti-Semitism can’t touch us here in the United States.”

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This morning, sometime around 3:00 AM, at least five swastikas were spray painted on buildings and a car in Borough Park, Brooklyn, an area heavily populated by the remaining, living survivors of the Holocaust and their children and grand children. The NYPD is investigating and treating this as a hate crime.

So am I. When I heard that Fischman’s Food Center, a grocery store owned by Bobover Hasidim on 16th Avenue, was targeted, I grabbed my camera and walked the block-and-a-half, my heart pounding. I’ve known the Fischmans since I moved here eight years ago.

The store was surrounded by crime-scene tape, residents, news teams, and detectives. A large swastika was spray-painted on one front window of the store and the vandals’ tag, Recon, was sprayed on another. A member of Shomrim, the volunteer civilian patrol which works closely with the NYPD, told me that the Fischman’s security cameras recorded the two vandals in the act shortly before 3:00 am. He said that more scenes would likely be uncovered throughout the day.

Inside the store, I overheard a member of the hate crimes taskforce say they were able to extract the images, which were very good quality.

The shopkeepers are Moshe and Scheindel Fischman who’ve been in business since the 1970s. Mrs. Fischman is a great-grandmother in her 60s and the daughter of holocaust survivors. Her father Moshe David, who passed away almost two years ago at the age of 97, was a hero responsible for keeping a contingent of Siberian WWII prisoners alive.

At night, in below-freezing weather, he’d sneak past armed guards and attack dog, sift through the guards’ garbage pails, and smuggle potato skins under his clothing. Also, under open threats of death, he performed numerous (over 70), ritual circumcisions, on infant Jewish boys born in the Siberian wasteland. For Mrs. Fischman, as for most inhabitants of Borough Park, this triggers traumatic memories.

“My father brought me from England to America in 1969. I saw open anti-Semitism growing up in England. The other school-children would throw things at us on our way to school.” America, she said, was a “breath of fresh air” to her, and where she decided to stay and raise a family.

Down the block from the Fischmans’ store, on 42nd Street between 15th and 16th, and around the corner from the Montauk High School, another swastika has been sprayed on a van window.

In Borough Park, before you see the NYPD (or firefighters), you see the admiring children, mostly elementary school-age boys with long peyos and Yiddish accents, and a sprinkling of a few shy girls. One of the officers at the scene was talking to a resident, who told me that this isn’t the first time she’s witnessed this kind of vandalism. Another resident, Suri bas-Chana, told me that this was “a wake-up call.”

“We aren’t really paying attention,” she told me. “We go about our lives as if anti-Semitism can’t touch us here in the United States.”

Two blocks in the other direction up 16th Avenue from the Fischman’s store, the Stolin synagogue was targeted. Several film crews are at the scene. Around the corner a mikvah was similarly defaced.

Councilman David Greenfield released a statement:  “Once again, we find ourselves under attack from individuals who think nothing of spreading hate and fear throughout the community. This is absolutely unacceptable, especially in an area that is home to so many Holocaust survivors. Rest assured, I will work with the NYPD until those responsible for this horrific crime are caught and held responsible.”

He’s offering $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrators.

The locations of five swastikas (reports are coming in that over eight have been found, are): 4609 16th Ave., 4619 16th Ave., 4423 16th Ave., 4623 18th Ave., and 42nd between 15th and 16th on a van.

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ThorsProvoni says:

It would be easier to take this stuff seriously if so many Jews did not fake anti-Semitic attacks. 

    LaureleiB says:

    What you offered as “proof” was 1 story about 1 girl at 1 college.   1 is not “so many” as your post suggests.   The phrase “so many” would require a little more evidence and several more offenders.   Do you conclude that it is hard to take hospitalized children seriously given there are “so many” parents with Munchausen by Proxy faking their kid’s illnesses?   I doubt you would as it is a rare psychological condition and while it makes the news occasionally it isn’t why MOST kids in hospitals are there.   Much the same as there aren’t “so many Jews” faking anti-Semitism as there are a handful of disturbed ones, or perhaps only 1 if we are to use your “evidence”.   Your using 1 example as a scientific sample size is ludicrous.   You’ll need to provide something with the TOTAL NUMBER of faked acts vs. the TOTAL NUMBER of real ones in this country to make a conclusion as you did.   At the very least you’d need a set of data greater than 1 to be able to assert what you have.   

    David Gold says:

    there may be some but give me a grip won’t dinify with viewing youtube  there is always a portion to stir the pot but not enough in this case it is what it is economy bad blame the jews been that way since beginning of time plain jealousy

PhillipNagle says:

I’m much more concerned about an anti-Semite becoming a congressman from NY.  Any fool can paint a swatstika but it takes tens of thousands of voters to elect an anti-Semite.  Of course too much of the Jewish establishment will say nothing because he is black.

    David Gold says:

    Not me  an anti-semite is what they is and color has nothing to do w/it although blacks are more ant-semitic then we will say

David Gold says:

It is alive and thriving always has been just becomes more prevelant and obvious during times of economic distress sad but true all Jews should keep guard up and remain vigilinte not neurotic just aware

brian2907 says:

The creature who styles himself  ‘ThorsProvini’ is an active Jew-hater who reposts hate propaganda from neo-Nazi websites (he hasn’t the intellect to create his own) onto whichever website will take his excrement. Censorship is not attractive but even less so is using a Jewish website for Nazi rantings. Ban his foul lies from your website now please!

Jacob Arnon says:

ThorsProvoni are you for real?
No. You are not. Your use of Ashkenazi gives you away. 

You are the Nazi Joachim who posts on Jewish websites you Nazi message. 

The fact that you go to Jewish websites shows what a loser you are. 

This is the kind of message you post:

“Yet there is an even deeper reason. Eastern European ethnic Ashkenazim were an element of a highly exploitative extractive elite that also included the Polish szlachta (nobility) and that abused the peasantry and lower bourgeoisie. Retroactively Jews had to justify Jewish activities by creating an image in their minds of blood-thirsty non-Jewish hordes. Jews drew upon some highly problematic intellectual currents in Jewish religion. Just read the Rabbanite Passover Hagadah.”

You insinuate but offer no proof of any of your antisemitic accusation. 

Go post on David Dukes website. 

leeaklein says:

You, a pseudo-intellectual , self-aggrandizing hate monger are the one who needs a reality check.  YOUR evil propaganda is far from original.  Lee Klein, Seattle 

David Gold says:

hey dont let a low life loser who is jealous and beneath you rile you up just plain old trash talking from trailer park ignorant fools


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Swastikas in Borough Park

“We go about our lives as if anti-Semitism can’t touch us here in the United States.”

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