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At Least 32 Jewish Community Centers Targeted in Second Wave of Bomb Threats

At least 32 Jewish Community Centers across the United States were subjected to bomb threats on Wednesday, less than ten days after 16 more JCCs were evacuated after similar threats.

JCCs and other Jewish institutions were targeted in the Boston, Miami, Detroit, Cincinnati, Nashville, Minneapolis, and Orlando metro areas, among others. The Anti-Defamation League reported threats in 16 states: Alabama, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas.

Paul Goldenberg, the director of Secure Community Networks, which is associated with the Jewish Federations of North America and advises Jewish institutions on security matters, explained to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that some institutions were shut down while others stayed open, depending on the determinations of local law enforcement. “It’s the second salvo in 10 days, we’re asking people to ensure they stay in contact with local law enforcement,” he said.

“Bomb threats to Jewish communities are nothing new,” Goldenberg added in a phone interview with Reuters. “What’s extraordinary is that we had so many in such a short period of time.”

In the most recent group of bomb threats, many of the calls were made by live persons, whereas last week’s threats were all recorded.

The Gordon JCC in Nashville was closed for an hour due to Wednesday’s threat, which was made in a woman’s voice and was received by a receptionist at the facility. It wasn’t clear if the call was pre-recorded or not.

Mark Freedman, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Nashville and Middle Tennessee, which was also targeted last week, said that his community would not be intimidated by “telephone terrorism.”

“These people, whoever they are, that are making these threats are trying to intimidate, create anxiety and fear, and we are going to do what we have to do to ensure the safety and security of our valued members and constituents, but we are not going to give in to what they are trying to create, which is to drive us away from our valued institutions,” he told the JTA.

The Anti-Defamation League says that anti-Semitic incidents have spiked since the presidential election.

[Photo: WTNH News 8 / YouTube ]