THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 26
Chapter 1: Soviet Jewry: I Am My Brother’s Keeper
 
 
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26 The Story of the Jewish Defense League

b“Pandemonium erupted in the hall. It turned into a vast bsea of clenched fists and waving placards and Israeli flags as bchants broke out again and again: ‘Never Again!’ ‘Freedom bNow!’ and ‘Am Yisroel Hai!’”

bMore than 2,400 people burst into the street and marched bdown Third Avenue, where hundreds of helmeted police bwith horses and barricades waited between the Jews and the bmission. At the rally I had told the crowd: “There were brabbis arrested in Selma, Alabama [for civil rights]; we bwant the same arrested for Soviet Jewry. We want people to bsit in the streets.” We had come to demonstrate physically bthat two Russians would, indeed, be killed for each Jew bmurdered in Russia.

bInspector James T. Sullivan, head of the Tactical Police bForce, ordered the crowd to disperse, but I shouted for bthem to push forward. The headline in the News tells the bstory: “Seize Rabbi, 6 as Jews, Cops Clash”

b“Rabbi Meir Kahane,” the story went on, “fiery leader of bthe militant Jewish Defense League, and six of his followers bwere arrested last night as Kahane urged a crowd to defy a bpolice order and surge past barriers guarding the Soviet bMission to the United Nations.

b“The violent clash between helmeted cops and the push- bing, shoving, screaming mob blocked traffic on Third Av- benue for about ten minutes. It peaked when some police- bmen and demonstrators in the crush smashed through two bwindows. . . .”

bI spent the night in prison again, while at the mission a bbottle of paint thrown from the Park East Synagogue bsmashed through a Russian window. The Soviets, livid with banger, watched as the hundred hours dragged on and, in bsubfreezing weather, Jews insulted every Russian that left bthe building. Yet another protest was filed with the US and bthe UN (we lost count of the number of protests the frus- btrated Soviets had filed) for the “physical damage and moral binjury sustained”.

bAnd the next day, December 28, as the protests grew, the bnews was flashed from happy face to happy face: the death bsentences were commuted! The Soviets had backed down. It b 

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THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 26
Chapter 1: Soviet Jewry: I Am My Brother’s Keeper