Texas suspect claimed to have planted bombs in NYC • Queens-based Holocaust survivor to speak at Bundestag


Good morning, New York. Join The Jewish Week and UJA-Federation of New York tonight at 6:00 p.m. ET for a conversation with Nomi Stolzenberg and David Myers about their new book, “American Shtetl: The Making of Kiryas Joel, a Hasidic Village in Upstate New York.” Register here.

To learn more about Kiryas Joel, read an essay by Stolzenberg and Myers about how the Satmar Hasidic movement used America’s liberal values to create a “shtetl” in exurban New York.  


The NYC angle: Some 1,000 people tuned into a briefing Tuesday on the hostage-taking at a Texas synagogue, presented by UJA-Federation of New York and the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York. Mitch Silber, executive director of their Community Security Initiative, offered new details, including how the suspect claimed falsely to have planted explosives in New York. Read our report here.

The heart of Texas: JTA’s Andrew Lapin speaks to Anna Salton Eisen, the first president of the Texas synagogue and the daughter of Holocaust survivors. She took solace in the support of local police during the crisis, saying, “You didn’t hear that in the Holocaust.”

Gather the people: The crisis in Texas shouldn’t erode the Jewish habit of gathering in person, writes scholar Raphael Magarik. “Houses of worship are vulnerable by design, and when that space is closed off, whether through security or by going online, something is lost,” he writes.


A warning: Inge Auerbacher (in photo, top, with her parents and grandparents) has spoken on prominent stages about how she survived the Holocaust as a child. On Jan. 27, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Queens resident will be the keynote speaker at the German Bundestag, where she plans to warn the assembly about rising antisemitism. Stewart Ain reports for The Jewish Week.

Police blotter: The NYPD is looking for a woman who made anti-Jewish comments and spat on a child last Friday in the Marine Park section of Brooklyn. There were no injuries. (Fox5)

Prize winner: Albert Bourla, a Greek-born Jew and the chief executive officer of the New York-based Pfizer, was named the winner of the 2022 Genesis Prize, the award sometimes called the “Jewish Nobel.” Genesis noted Bourla’s work at the pharmaceutical giant, which developed one of the first COVID-19 vaccines.

Don’t fence us in: Several Orthodox Jewish summer camps are suing the upstate town of Wawarsing, saying a 2021 zoning amendment “targeted” Jews and was meant to obstruct further development of the camps. (Daily Freeman)

Remembering: Like a lot of Jews growing up in Brooklyn, Edward Schoenfeld learned to love Chinese food. He made it a career, opening a series of famed restaurants that introduced New Yorkers to the wide variety of Chinese cuisine. “My personal joke is that I learned to speak Yiddish in the Chinese restaurant from my customers,” he told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in 2013. Schoenfeld died Friday at 72.


Westchester Jewish Coalition for Immigration’s series of workshops on refugee resettlement continues tonight with “Fundraising for Refugee Resettlement,” featuring Margo Golos, former development director of the Jewish Federation of the Berkshires. Find registration information for individual sessions here. 7:00 p.m.

Photo, top: Inge Auerbacher with her parents and grandparents in 1938. The Holocaust survivor from Queens will speak at the German Bundestag on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Jan. 27, 2022. (Courtesy)