Jewish Leaders, Authorities Meeting To Discuss Security In Wake Of Recent Attacks In Bergen County



Members of Bergen County’s Jewish community were to meet with law enforcement officials tonight following Wednesday’s firebombing of a shul in Rutherford as well as other recent targeted bias crimes in Hackensack, Maywood and Paramus.

The firebombing of Rabbi Nosson Schuman’s residence next to Congregation Beth El marks the fourth hate crime targeted at a Jewish center in the past month.

“It really hit me that I am lucky to be alive,” said Schuman’s 15-year-old daughter Menuchah . “My dad’s saying ‘fire, fire’ and he grabs the fire extinguisher and he runs back into his bedroom.”

“This is certainly a hate crime, this is certainly a bias crime,” said Bergen County prosecutor John Molinelli. “This is aggravated arson, but most importantly, we’re now looking on this as an attempted homicide.”

“They tried hurting my family but God protected us,” Menuchah Schuman said.

Police believe at least two people hurled several Molotov cocktails and lit aerosol canisters into Schuman’s bedroom window. They melted the blinds and lit his bed on fire where he and his wife were sleeping.

“We just woke up to flames roaring through my window and my quilt caught fire,” Rabbi Schuman said.

“I ran to get the kids, started screaming then got my father-in-law in the attic,” said his wife, Pessy Schuman.
Rutherford Police wre scheduled to be stationed outside Congregation Beth El into the weekend.

This was just the latest in a string of attacks against Bergen County’s Jewish community.

“We’d turn the radio on and hear about these anti-Semitic attacks and I thought that’s insane. And then my house was attacked the worst. It’s still shocking, still trying to get over it kind of,” Menuchah Schuman told CBS 2′s Jessica Schneider.
In December of last year vandals left messages of hate and painted three swastikas on Temple Beth El in Hackensack. A week earlier in Maywood, swastikas were painted on the sidewalk and on the ramp of a temple.

Rabbi Chaim Shapiro, whose Paramus synagogue was attacked last week, said members aren’t scared.

“I’m not asking anyone to be alarmed by this,” he said. “I’m asking people to have a much higher level of awareness.”

“They may have taken advantage of the weak. Similarly what happened in Paramus, low profile, I was told that synagogue you wouldn’t know it’s a synagogue if you pass by,” Rabbi Schuman said.

Prosecutors now want to know if these crimes are connected and leaders in the Jewish community are ready to tighten security.

The Jewish Federation of Northern New Jersey will conduct a security briefing with the prosecutor’s office, police and even New Jersey’s Department of Homeland Security to develop a plan to help prevent future attacks.

“The most recent one raised the stakes for us because it was personal. Lives were at stake and it’s unacceptable red line for us Jews and Americans,” said Jason Shames of the Federation.

{CBS NY/ Newscenter}


  1. HOW MUCH MORE DOES ANTI-SEMITISM NEED TO GROW C”V before we wake up to Hashem’s message? are we just going to continue watching anti-semitsm grow even in the medina shel chessed of the USA & just say its coincidence OR is it a message from Hashem for all of klal yisroel to make aliyah NOW towards the geula & mashiach? BEFORE HASHEM NEEDS TO MAKE THINGS WORSE C”V