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For Immediate Release: Contact:
MONDAY, JANUARY 29, 1996 Corey Bearak         or       Manny Behar
(718) 343-6779            (718) 544-9033


Queens Jewish leaders condemned the scrawling of a swastika found this morning on the front of the Little Neck Jewish Center, 49-10 Little Neck Parkway.  The Queens Jewish Community Council and  the Northeast Queens Jewish Community Council praised Captain Kathleen Kearns and the officers of the 111th Police Precinct for their swift response to this act of desecration.  The Councils also noted the assistance of Lt. David Nadel of the Office of the Chief of the Department.

In a joint statement, NEQJCC President Corey Bearak and QJCC President Harold baron said: "All New Yorkers should find this act offensive and outrageous.  The presence of a swastika on the front of a synagogue is not just another case of vandalism.  We condemn any use of the swatika.  The use of this symbol of mas hate and destruction is insensitive to the pain and suffering of the six million [Jews and other millions] who perished and those who survived the Holocaust."

"We thank City Councilman Sheldon S. Leffler (Eastern Queens) for alerting the 111th Precinct on our behalf," stated QJCC President Baron.  "At this time, we undersant that a magic maker was used as the tool of vandalism and police officers and detectives are investigating the incident," stated NEQJCC President Bearak.  Bearak and QJCC Director Manny Bahar consulted with LNJC Rabbi Abraham Eckstein and President Phyllis Alperstein upon being advised of the incident which was first reported by LNJC Past President and QJCC Executive Vice President Dr. Arnold Honig.

"Many people in our community remember another time and another place where synagogues were desecrated," wrote Mssrs Bearak and Baron in a letter to Police Commissioner William Bratton acknowledging the NYPD's reaction. "That was a prelude to the Holocaust, in which six million Jews were murdered under the banner of the swastika.  Incidents like this reopen some of our most painful wounds and recall experiences we thought we had left behind us when we came to the shores of this great City."

The Queens Jewish Community Council represents some 100 synagogues, organizations and institutions throughout the Borough of Queens.  The Northeast Queens Jewish Community Council represents over thirty synagogues, Jewish organizations and fraternal groups in Bayside, Bay Terrace, Bellerose, Douglaston, Floral Park, Hollis Hills, Little Neck, New Hyde Park and Queens Village.



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