Columns

Swastika 'Juden Raus' Hate Letter Sent to NYC Businesses, Israeli Consulate

Assemblyman Dov Hikind shows a letter sent to Weiss Kosher Bakery in New York stating "Juden Raus," or "Jews out." (Assemblyman Dov Hikind's office)

New York police and the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office are investigating mailers received last week by several businesses in Brooklyn and Manhattan bearing a swastika and hateful messages.

The Weiss Kosher Bakery on 13th Avenue was the first business to receive the letter. The owners contacted their assemblyman, Dov Hikind, who posted it on his Facebook page.

“Juden Raus” means “Jews out.”

Weiss Bakery owner Abraham Weiss told WABC that he “was not afraid, but it is shock.”

“First it’s shock, then it’s disgusting,” he said. “We’re going back to the World War II era. Why would people do such a thing? I would never do anything to anyone.”

The hate mailer was also reportedly sent to the Israeli consulate, three law firms in Sheepshead Bay, the Harlem Business Alliance on Lenox Avenue, the Numero Uno jewelry store on East 116th Street, a Starbucks in Harlem, a Borough Park bakery, and the kosher butcher shop Satmar Meat of Boro Park.

Regina Smith, executive director of the Harlem Business Alliance, told DNAinfo New York, “People are pretty bold, but not bold enough to show themselves.”

Hikind said in a statement that “in light of what’s going on the world, all threats must be taken very seriously.”

“Hate crimes are serious matters. This threat against one of our community’s beloved establishments, which used the U.S. mail, is absolutely a hate crime,” the assemblyman said in relation to the Weiss Kosher Bakery. “It’s sad that we live in a time when such disgusting things are said about various races, including the Jews, but we will certainly take these matters seriously when they arise and act swiftly and responsibly, in tandem with the police, to make sure our community members are safe and protected.”

The Israeli consulate in Manhattan was briefly closed last month after a death threat and suspicious white powder were received.