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New Bomb Threat Against Synagogue in Miami Beach; Jews Warned

March 18, 1958
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

A new bomb threat against a synagogue in nearby Miami Beach was received by a worshipper early this morning, on the heels of the dynamiting late yesterday of a Jewish center in this city, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency learned today.

According to Rabbi Tibor Stern of Congregation Beth Jacob of Miami Beach, a worshipper was stopped outside the synagogue by an unidentified man who told him that unless the menorah on the synagogue were pulled down, the building would be bombed. The license plate numbers of the car in which the terrorist drove off were obtained and the Miami Beach police are believed ready to make an arrest.

Last night’s blast, heard miles from the scene, blew out the back of the Temple Beth El Jewish center, raised its roof off the beams, and knocked the structure askew. A section of iron railing was hurled 150 yards from the building. It is believed that most of the building will have to be rebuilt. Early estimates placed the damage at about $30,000.

No one was injured, though the explosion bounced people about in their beds in houses near the scene. Police estimate that at least a dozen sticks of dynamite were detonated under the rear wall of the building.

The police, who first attempted to suppress news of the blast for fear of setting off a wave of hysteria, have had nothing to report today. Two private citizens have already offered rewards for information leading to the apprehension of the criminals responsible for the attack. One of the rewards, for $50, was offered by Tom Rankine, an official of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and a Baptist; the other, for $100, was made public by Charles Rosengarten, a founder of Temple Beth El.

Jewish communal organizations immediately began efforts to unearth evidence. Haskell Lazare, an American Jewish Congress official, wired Florida Governor Leroy Collins and asked for an official investigation of the outrage.

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