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Vandals defile Jewish cemetery in St. Petersburg
Jerusalem Post ^ | Feb. 16, 2004 | AP

Posted on 02/16/2004 7:17:26 PM PST by yonif

Vandals defiled a Jewish cemetery in St. Petersburg, painting swastikas and anti-Semitic graffiti on about 50 graves, Jewish leaders said Monday.

Mark Grubarg, head of the St. Petersburg Jewish Religious Community, said the vandalism occurred Saturday night at the cemetery, one of the largest Jewish burial places in Russia's former imperial capital.

"We are in shock," he said.

The cemetery had suffered some isolated cases of vandalism before, Grubarg said, but nothing approaching the scale of the latest incident.

"Any nation is sensitive to acts of vandalism at cemeteries but Jews are particularly sensitive, especially when it concerns fascist signs," Grubarg said.

He said the defiled graves reminded him "of the early years of fascist Germany, where the genocide started exactly the same way".

Vandalism of Jewish sites has become more frequent, he said, adding that it appeared to be an attempt to destabilize the city and nation ahead of the March 14 presidential elections, which President Vladimir Putin is expected to win in a landslide.

"I think our society should do everything possible to nip such things in the bud," Grubarg said.

Prosecutors said they have launched a criminal investigation.

Anti-Semitic acts, including violence, are occasionally reported in Russia, but top Jewish leaders have praised the efforts of Putin's government in encouraging religious tolerance.

The vandalism happened several days after a group of teenagers killed a 9-year-old girl from the former Soviet republic of Tajikistan, unleashing a wave of indignation in the city and throughout Russia. People from Central Asia and the Caucasus - along with other ethnic minorities - regularly face discrimination and occasionally fall victim to hate crimes.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; Israel; News/Current Events; Russia
KEYWORDS: antisemitism; hc2; jews; stpetersburg; vandals

1 posted on 02/16/2004 7:17:28 PM PST by yonif
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To: yonif
I'm fairly certain that the graffiti was done by Russians, not Vandals (a Western Gothic tribe that invaded Spain and northern Africa in the 5th century. They were Arianist heritics, who did not like Jews, but there are none left.)
Not your fault, I just don't like derisive terms based on group names.
2 posted on 02/16/2004 7:23:19 PM PST by rmlew (Peaceniks and isolationists are objectively pro-Terrorist)
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To: yonif
No doubt the vandals were hepped up on the images they saw in clips of Mel Gibson's upcoming The Passion of the Christ.
3 posted on 02/16/2004 7:33:22 PM PST by PackerBoy (Just my opinion ....)
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To: yonif
Another stupid crime born of ignorance. Somewhere there's a liberal explaining how this was justified.
4 posted on 02/16/2004 10:01:27 PM PST by txzman (Jer 23:29)
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To: dennisw; Cachelot; Yehuda; Nix 2; veronica; Catspaw; knighthawk; Alouette; Optimist; weikel; ...
If you'd like to be on or off this middle east/political ping list, please FR mail me.
5 posted on 02/17/2004 5:45:30 AM PST by SJackson (Visit http://www.JewPoint.blogspot.com)
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To: PackerBoy
No doubt the vandals were hepped up on the images they saw in clips of Mel Gibson's upcoming The Passion of the Christ.

It hasn't been released yet. More likely fables their parents told of the event than the forthcoming movie.

6 posted on 02/17/2004 5:46:27 AM PST by SJackson (Visit http://www.JewPoint.blogspot.com)
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To: PackerBoy
No doubt the vandals were hepped up

Interesting choice of words. Hep! was a slogan used during pogroms by German anti-Semites in the 1840's. It is an acronym of Hierosalima est perdita ("Jerusalem is lost!")

7 posted on 02/17/2004 5:53:33 AM PST by Alouette (I chose to NOT have an abortion -- 9 times.)
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To: Alouette
I'll bet you are a big hit at cocktail parties. ;)
8 posted on 02/17/2004 9:40:04 AM PST by PackerBoy (Just my opinion ....)
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