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The Jewish Defense League, also known as JDL, was established in 1968 for the declared purpose of protecting Jews by whatever means necessary in the face of what was seen by the group’s principals as their dire peril. The founder, national chairman and leader of the JDL was a then-38-year-old ordained rabbi from Brooklyn, New York, Meir Kahane, who, in 1990, was assassinated in New York by an Arab extremist.
In Rabbi Kahane’s gross distortion of the position of Jews in America, American Jews were living in a fiercely hostile society, facing much the same dangers as the Jews in Nazi Germany or those in Israel surrounded by 100-million Arab enemies. Rabbi Kahane believed that the major Jewish organizations in the United States had failed to protect America’s Jews from anti-Semitism, which he saw as “exploding” all over the country. "If I have succeeded in instilling fear in you," Rabbi Kahane said in the closing statement of his standard speech, "I consider this evening a success."
In fact, Kahane consistently preached a radical form of Jewish nationalism which reflected racism, violence and political extremism.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
The Jewish Defense League (JDL) is a tiny Jewish "self-defense" movement, classed by the CIA and FBI as a terrorist group. It was founded in 1968 by Meir Kahane as a vigilante group to protect Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods in New York City from attack by various gangs of street thugs, and to protest local instances of anti-Semitic violence. The JDL soon broadened its concerns to the global situation of the Jewish community, and sought to defend Jews from perceived threats through the use of violence.
The JDL is widely viewed as extremist and no mainstream Jewish organization has ties to it. However, the JDL has close links with the outlawed Israeli Kach movement (which was also founded by Meir Kahane) and may have links to other right-wing movements within the Jewish settler community in the occupied West Bank. Newspaper reports indicate that membership in the JDL appears to have been limited to a few hundred people by the year 2000, with a much smaller number actually being active in the organization.
JDL members have been accused by the FBI and CIA of 37-50 terrorist attacks, including:
The bombing of the San Francisco branch of Melli, an Iranian bank,
The bombing of the Iraqi UN mission in 1982.
The bombing of the offices of Sol Hurok, who organized performances of Soviet ballet in the United States (resulting in one death).
The bombing of the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee's Los Angeles offices in 1985 (killing its director, Alex Odeh).
The murder of Tsherim Soobzokov (a Waffen-SS veteran) in a bomb attack in 1985.
In these cases an anonymous caller would claim JDL responsibility for the bombing, which was then denied by the JDL leadership, although often they would say that, although they had nothing to do with it themselves, they were happy the attacks had occurred: for example JDL chairman Irv Rubin said Odeh "got what he deserved", although they insist the attack was done by Arabs, not by them. (Sources: , )
The primary motivation for attacks on Soviet targets such as Sol Hurok was the refusal of the Soviet government to permit Jewish emigration from the Soviet Union to Israel.
JDL has also defended the massacre of 29 Arabs in Hebron by Dr. Baruch Goldstein, a former JDL activist, in February 1994, saying "we feel that Goldstein took a preventative measure against yet another Arab attack on Jews. We understand his motivation, his grief and his actions. And we are not ashamed to say that Goldstein was a charter member of the Jewish Defense League." ().
After 1987, when several JDL members were convicted on terrorism charges, there was a lull in reports of JDL terrorism. On December 12, 2001, Irv Rubin, the JDL Chairman, and Earl Krugel, a member of the organization, were officially charged with conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism. The two were allegedly caught in the act of planning bomb attacks on Arab-American Congressman Darrell Issa's office and on the King Fahd Mosque in Culver City, California. The two were arrested as part of a sting operation when they received a shipment of explosives at Krugel's home in L.A.
While awaiting trial for the mosque bomb plot, Irv Rubin cut himself with a small razor and jumped off the jail balcony. His death was ruled a suicide. On February 4, 2003, Krugel pled guilty to conspiracy charges stemming from the plan. It has been argued that the death of Irv Rubin has finished the JDL as a viable terror gang, with the organization now reduced to a propaganda role.