From today’s JTA:
The Los Angeles Police Department is investigating whether Israeli organized crime is connected to an attack at a local synagogue.
The department initially listed the Oct. 30 shooting at the Adat Yeshurun Valley Sephardic Synagogue in North Hollywood, Calif., as a hate crime, but in recent weeks police been working on the theory that the shooting was to silence someone, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday.
Two people were shot in the legs in the parking lot of the synagogue, located in the San Fernando Valley’s Orthodox community. Police believe one of the men that was shot was the target of the attack, the newspaper reported…
Israeli organized crime has been operating in Los Angeles since the mid-1990s, according to the newspaper.
Postscript: I spoke with a friend who read the local Israeli press in LA immediately after the shooting and said that even then there was serious speculation that Israeli organized crime was behind it.
If it was indeed an “inside job,” it puts a very interesting twist on our thinking about Jewish safety in general. It was notable that the ADL, immediately after the shooting, issued a press release with the predictable language:
Statistics consistently show Jews to be far and away the most frequently targeted religious group, with 74 percent of hate crimes motivated by religion being perpetrated against Jews in Los Angeles County.
I think the issue of Jewish power vs. vulnerability in America and the diaspora at large is an important and complex one. For my part, I believe (ADL’s problematic “annual audit” notwithstanding) that we Jews have never been more secure in our history than we are in present day America. If for nothing else, this latest incident is newsworthy for adding one more complicated dimension to the issue.