At Least Ten Jewish Community Centers Across US Targeted in Latest Spate of Telephone Bomb Threats
At least ten Jewish community centers across America received telephone bomb threats on Monday, according to media reports.
NBC News reported that JCCs in Birmingham, Cleveland, Chicago, St. Paul, Tampa, Albuquerque, Houston, Milwaukee, Nashville and Buffalo were evacuated.
No bombs were found at any of the threatened sites.
This marked the fourth spate of concurrent bomb threats issued against JCCs in different parts of the US since the start of 2017.
In a statement on Monday, Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan A. Greenblatt said, “We are confident that JCCs around the country are taking the necessary security protections, and that law enforcement officials are making their investigation of these threats a high priority. We look to our political leaders at all levels to speak out against such threats directed against Jewish institutions, to make it clear that such actions are unacceptable, and to pledge that they will work with law enforcement officials to ensure that those responsible will be apprehended and punished to the full extent of the law.”
Last month, an international security consultant and political risk analyst told The Algemeiner that the bomb threats targeting JCCs were part of an “unfortunate growing trend.”
“There has been an increase in non-profit organizations — both Jewish and not — receiving these types of bomb threats, whether through robocalls or other telephonic means,” Dr. Joshua Gleis, president of Gleis Security Consulting, said.
One reason for this, according to Gleis, is technology.
“It’s very easy today to anonymously make phone calls,” he noted. “Law enforcement cannot always find out where they are coming from.”
The perpetrators, Gleis said, might “just be looking to sow fear in the community.”
“But another concern, which is more sinister, is that it is not just to create panic and fear, but really, God forbid, to see how different organizations respond and then potentially attack them while they’re responding — for example attack them while they are evacuating, where they could be potentially more vulnerable because now there are hundreds of people outside,” he added.