Jewish community centers in US hit with 6th round of bomb threats

Jewish community centers and schools across the US, and now in Canada, continue to receive bomb threats in unprecedented numbers.  

Bomb threats were made to more than a dozen Jewish institutions in North America on Tuesday, followed by four more on Wednesday. It was the sixth wave of menacing warnings since January.

Jewish community centers (JCC) and schools in New York, Massachusetts, Illinois, Wisconsin, Maryland, Oregon, Florida and Alabama were threatened either over the phone or by email on Tuesday. Two Canadian JCCs – in Toronto and London, Ontario – were also threatened.

On Wednesday, three JCCs in the US were targeted – in Delaware, Colorado and Connecticut – and one in Vancouver, Canada.

Since January, over 140 bomb threats have targeted Jewish institutions in 36 US states, including JCCs, schools, synagogues and Anti-Defamation League (ADL) offices in New York, San Francisco, Atlanta, Boston and Washington, DC.

To date, one man has been arrested in connection with eight of these threats.

Similarly, two Jewish cemeteries in Philadelphia , New York and St. Louis were vandalized and desecrated.

According to the latest FBI statistics, the number of anti-Semitic criminal offenses rose from 635 in 2014 to 695 in 2015.

“But the numbers alone don’t tell the whole story. Each threat sends a message of hate to innocent adults and children, who will surely carry it with them for years to come,” the ADL stated.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer condemned the latest wave of threats.

Read  Whopping majority of Americans believe in antisemitic tropes, new poll finds

“I share the president’s thoughts that he vehemently hopes that we don’t continue to have to share these reports with you. But as long as they do continue, we’ll continue to condemn them and look at ways in which we can stop them,” Spicer told reporters on Tuesday.

Also on Tuesday, all 100 Senators wrote a letter asking President Donald Trump to help “enhance security measures and improve preparedness” for the Jewish community in light of incessant bomb threats.

“We are concerned the number of incidents is accelerating and failure to address and deter these threats will place innocent people at risk and threaten the financial viability of JCCs, many of which are institutions in their communities,” the letter, which was addressed to Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and FBI Director James Comey, read.

“These cowardly acts aim to create an atmosphere of fear and disrupt the important programs and services offered by JCCs to everyone in the communities they serve, including in our states,” the senators wrote in the letter.

By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News