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Firm of Swig, Weiler, Arnow to Aid Vandalized East Side Synagogues

November 6, 1973
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The real estate firm of Benjamin Swig of San Francisco, Jack D. Weiler and Robert H. Arnow of New York will direct a campaign to provide a place of worship and learning for Jews whose synagogues have been targets of major vandalism on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Jerome H. Becker, president of the Metropolitan Coordinating Council on Jewish Poverty, said here yesterday.

He spoke at a memorial service for the Torah Scrolls in a firebombing last month which wrecked Congregation Chevra Bachurim. Becker charged that the bombing, the 16th such incident against a synagogue on the Lower East Side in the last two years, was “a systematic plot to frighten aged, elderly and infirm Jews into leaving the neighborhood.”

A Council spokesman said that Congregation Chevra Bachurim had a daily worship service attended by 40 to 50 elderly Jews and that it had been damaged beyond use. He said it was the last synagogue in the area providing such worship facilities.

He explained that a building was being sought in the area, one hopefully in a safer place, to be renovated for use as a synagogue. He added that the plans of the campaign called for finding and renovating the building and opening it as a synagogue before the end of this month. He said it was expected that Rabbi Nison Alpert, spiritual leader of the firebombed synagogue, would serve as rabbi of the renovated facility.

Becker reported that the Council was “engaged in a major coordinated effort with all arms of the City Administration to stabilize the neighborhood and to insure that our brethren will live out their golden years in safety, security and dignity.” He praised the firm of Swig, Weiler and Arnow for a “magnanimous, humanitarian gesture” to enable elderly Jews of the area to “speedily resume” their daily worship Rabbi Alpert also praised the action of the real estate firm.

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