< HOME  Friday, September 25, 2009

Swastikas on Seattle Synagogues - Not What It May Seem?

by David Klinghoffer
September 15, 2009

On Saturday night as Jews initiated the penitential Selichot cycle of prayers leading up to Rosh Hashanah, someone was outside two of the Orthodox synagogues in Seattle's Seward Park neighborhood, spray-painting swastikas, the word "Nazi," and "Fourth Riech" (misspelled) on the doors and sidewalks outside. Of course everyone's very upset here, understandably so, but my wife's initial reaction on hearing the news may be right: That it was a disgruntled Jewish teenager or some disturbed person from the community itself who did it.

The choice of Selichot night, a solemn occasion, struck me as significant. No one outside the community would know it was anything special. So did the misspelling of Reich. Would a real neo-Nazi get that wrong? And painting simply the word "Nazi"? This doesn't quite add up. The neighborhood around the two shuls is predominantly Jewish and African-American. Somehow I don't see black youths painting Nazi iconography. In turn, the synagogues are out of the way, not well known in Seattle, geographically isolated, and quite hard to find. An odd choice, all around, for a genuine anti-Semite.

For what it's worth, my prediction is that if the culprit is found, he will turn out to be Jewish. It reminds me of my own experience growing up. In our Reform Hebrew school class, the boys routinely doodled swastikas and SS insignia on their notebooks. When the befuddled, ineffectual teacher turned his back on us, boys would be jumping up and giving him Nazi salutes. Let's see if my guess turns out to be right.


At Friday, September 25, 2009, Blogger Greg Bacon said...

What's with the backward swastikas? Are we supposed to think that the 'Aryans' that spray painted the swastikas are so ignorant they don't know which way they faced?

How stupid do those clowns who actually did the painting think we are?

At Friday, September 25, 2009, Blogger andie531 said...

Well, when you're a drunken Jewish retard teenager, who cares what direction it's in?

Like the author says, these synagogues are in an area that is not well known and the Jewish sector is away from the main drag. I was working down there (Columbia City section of Seattle) a couple of years ago and found out that there were quite a few Jews (Sephardic) in that area. Have been there since the early 1900's - immigrated from Rhodes, Greece.


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