Orthodox Zealots Are Suspected of Defacing Ben-gurion’s Grave

The grave of David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, was defaced with swastikas by vandals Monday night, and police suspect a gang of young religious zealots, calling themselves Keshet, as the perpetrators.

The grave near Sde Boker, the Negev kibbutz where Ben-Gurion made his home, is a national shrine.

A caretaker discovered it daubed with swastikas and the spray-painted words, “Come find us. We’ve reached over here. Keshet.”

The grave of Paula Ben-Gurion, the prime minister’s widow who was buried alongside him, was untouched.

Kibbutz officials said this was the first time Ben-Gurion’s grave had been desecrated.

Nine alleged members of Keshet were taken into custody over the weekend on unrelated charges.

They are suspected of a series of small explosions and attempted bombings of news kiosks that sold non-Orthodox newspapers near the religious township of Bnei Brak.

A tenth man arrested was released Sunday.

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