• Art S.

Tree of Life Massacre in Pittsburgh, 2018

Updated: Dec 4, 2020

On This Day in Jewish History: October 27, 2018

https://www.instagram.com/p/CG2ZDoFlTWG/

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#onthisday, 2018, eleven members of the Pittsburgh Jewish community were murdered at the Tree of Life Synagogue. To date, it is the single, most deadly assault on a Jewish community in U.S. history.

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Tree of Life is located in the predominantly Jewish neighborhood of Squirrel Hill, Pittsburgh.

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The shooting was carried out on a Shabbos morning and in addition to the eleven lives lost, six other people were wounded.

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Robert Bowers, an avowed white supremacist and antisemite, was arrested by police nine minutes after he first entered Tree of Life.

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He had moved through the synagogue using an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and 2 pistols. FBI officers first on sight have said it was the most gruesome crime scene they had ever seen.

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Once inside, Bowers yelled "All Jews must die!" Fueled by an ideology of a growing far-right movement in America, one that had led the Unite the Right march in Charlottesville, VA a year before with chants of, "Jews will not replace us!"

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Bringing together a toxic mix of racism and antisemitism, the deep hatred that informed the Pittsburgh shooter has flourished on social media where conspiracy theories circulate widely.

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To date, Bowers’ trial on multiple felony counts has not begun.

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While the American Jewish community has always been on guard against antisemitic rhetoric and actions, the Tree of Life shooting shocked the community into a new awareness of the violent threat posed by forces on the extreme right.

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News of the shooting reverberated through the American Jewish world, many of its members attending their own Shabbat services on that Saturday morning that did not hear about the tragedy till after Shabbat had ended.

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Vigils and moments of silence were held in the halls of government and sports arenas in solidarity with the Pittsburgh Jewish community.

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Those murdered in Pittsburgh #onthisday were: Joyce Fienberg Rose Malinger Richard Gottfried Cecil and David Rosenthal Jerry Rabinowitz Bernice and Sylvan Simon Daniel Stein Melvin Wax Irving Younger - may their lives be remembered in blessing.

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#judaism#jewish#jewishhistory#onthisday#pittsburgh#massacre#antisemitism#otdjh#11#zl

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Text Source:

https://pittnews.com/article/151986/news/the-tree-of-life-massacre-what-happened/

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