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New York Community Horrified to Discover Local Jewish Cemetery Vandalized

Some in the local Jewish community worry that antisemitism may be the motive for vandalism at their cemetery.

Last week, a mowing crew discovered that three headstones were pushed over at Degel Israel Cemetery in the town of Watertown.

Cemetery Association board member Neil Katzman says he believes it happened over the last two weeks and worries the act may be related to the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

“It could be possibly a hate crime and we have never had vandalism. I have worked at the cemetery probably 25, 30 years and I have never seen this before. So, as far as I am concerned, whether it is our cemetery or anyone else’s cemetery, it is a violation of sacred grounds and it is very upsetting,” he said.

“What struck me as almost surreal was why anybody would disturb graves,” said Anita Seefried-Brown, a member of Degel Israel Synagogue.

The headstones have been put back in their upright positions.

State police are investigating the case.

There were no security cameras on the grounds at the time of the vandalism. Katzman says the board is looking into putting up a surveillance system in the near future.

Source: https://www.wwnytv.com/2023/10/31/jewish-cemetery-vandalized-community-worries-about-antisemitism/