ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - Increasing tensions between Israel and Iran lead to an urgent warning for Jewish institutions throughout the St. Louis area to step up safety measures.
There’s no imminent threat, Anti-Defamation League regional director Karen Aroesty is quick to point out.
“I think the Jewish community always has a heightened interest in protecting itself,” Aroesty tells KMOX News. “All of that spikes when you have activity like has occurred in the last few days in India with targets against Israeli interests.”
The ADL is out with a lengthy list of reminders for Jewish insitutions under the categories of “action steps”, “suspicious activity”, and “suspicious packages”.
They advise temple personnel to closely inspect incoming mail for things like misspelled words, excessive postage, and overly-generalized addresses like “president” or “rabbi”.
Meanwhile, personnel are being urged to keep an eye out for strangers lingering about, taking photos or video of their institution, or trying to bypass security.
Under action steps, temple officials are being told it’s a good idea to review and practice security procedures, make sure that surveillance cameras are working properly, and connect with local law enforcement to discuss security.
All of this because of ratcheting tensions between Israel and Iran over the latter’s efforts to produce a viable nuclear weapons program, which has been linked to attacks on Jewish interests in India, Thailand and elsewhere.
“On the off chance that somebody in the fringe capacity here in the United States could decide to take revenge for what’s going on somewhere else against a Jewish institution, you need to be paying attention,” Aroesty says.
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