NEW YORK (Jan. 14)
The Manhattan District Attorney’s office, In an apparent move to implement Mayor, John V. Lindsay’s decision to “get tough” with the Jewish Defense League, has informed that organization that it is putting before a grand jury four criminal cases involving the JDL or its leader, Rabbi Meir Kahane, The cases, expected to be presented before the grand jury tomorrow, involve anti-Soviet and anti-Arab incidents allegedly perpetrated by members of the League during recent months, Meanwhile, despite increased surveillance at all Soviet offices here, a window of the Soviet Aeroflot-Intourist office was smashed early this morning when a bag of bricks was hurled at it by unidentified persons in a passing car, Shortly after the incident, the Daily News received two anonymous phone calls announcing the action, which were closed with the JDL slogan, “Never Again.” But Rabbi Meir Kahane, national chairman of the Jewish Defense League, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that his group has “absolutely no knowledge of who did it and why it was done.” Mayor Lindsay, briefed on the incident minutes after it happened, termed the rock-throwing a “disgusting act” At the same time, it was learned here today that the New England coordinator of the Jewish Defense League, Rabbi Marvin Antelman, has resigned from both his post and membership in the organization, stating that although he agrees with the aims of national JDL, he is disturbed by the means employed to achieve them.
Rabbi Antelman, who resigned along with the chairmen and chapters of JDL in Manchester, New Hampshire; Worcester, Mass; and Hartford, Connecticut, stated that, “It is indeed unfortunate that few today in this country could be identified as coming to the forefront of helping fight for the survival of Soviet Jewry and for the Jewish underdog as Rabbi Kahane has done, despite the difference between us as to the methods for accomplishing our aims.” Continuing, Rabbi Antelman said: “Those who have left felt that there was an increasing lawless situation and a credibility gap developing between National JDL and New England cities. Rabbi Antelman did not elaborate of the nature of the credibility gap. Meanwhile, New York City police continued to search for suspects in the brick-hurling window-smashing incident at the Aeroflot office this morning. The policeman on duty near the office at the time of the incident, reported that the bricks were flung from a passing car, but could not provide an adequate description of the car or its driver.
Earlier today, New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller, speaking to newsmen at the offices of Federation where he appeared to launch their telephone campaign, assailed the harassment tactics of JDL as “counter=productive” and stated that they may result in retaliation against Russian Jews and reduce their chances to emigrate. At the same time, Bertram Zweibon, general counsel of the JDL and successor to Rabbi Kahane when he leaves in August for Israel, told newsmen that the cases expected to be heard before the grand jury tomorrow include the following incidents: An alleged attack last May on Dr. M. T. Mehdi, secretary general of the Action Committee on American-Arab Relations in the offices of the pro-Arab anti-Zionist organization; the invasion last June of the offices of Amtorg, the Soviet trade center; a pipe bomb explosion last November near the Aeroflot-Intourist office; and a disorder last December 27th outside the Soviet Mission. Mr. Zweibon also announced that Rabbi Kahane is scheduled to become chairman of an organization called the World Jewish Defense League, which, according to the JDL leader, already has branches in France, England, the Netherlands and Mexico.