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February 04, 1994 - Image 55

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1994-02-04

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Argentine Rabbi
Is Attacked

New York (JTA) — Argen-
tine Jews are experiencing a
heightened fear of anti-
Semitism in the wake of a
violent attack on the coun-
try's leading rabbi.
Rabbi Salomon Benhamu,
57, was walking to his syn-
agogue in Buenos Aires last
Shabbat with his 10-year-old
son, Yosef, when he was
assaulted in broad daylight
by four people who first
shouted anti-Semitic slurs
and then ferociously beat
him.
Rabbi Benhamu was
slapped, kicked, punched
and then knocked to the
ground.
He refrained from talking
about the attack until the
Sabbath was over. But he
subsequently told reporters
that the attack alarms all of
the country's 350,000 Jews.
Argentine President
Carlos Menem telephoned
the rabbi and condemned the
violence.
Rabbi Benhamu said he
was moved to tears by the
president's call. He also
received a sympathetic
phone call from Mr.
Menem's estranged wife,
Zulema, who is a Muslim.
The DAIA, the represent-
ative body of Argentine
Jews, sent a message to the
Interior Ministry calling for
"the adoption of immediate,
aggressive measures to find
and punish those responsible
for the attack," the World
Jewish Congress reported.
Argentine Interior Min-
ister Carlos Ruckauf visited
the rabbi in his home in the
presence of reporters and ac-
companied by Pedro
Olschansky, press officer of
the Latin American Jewish
Congress.
Manuel Tenenbaum, who
is head of the Jewish con-
gress, also called on Rabbi
Benhamu at home, express-
ing the group's solidarity
with him. Mr. Tenenbaum
brought up the matter with
the DMA's board of direc-
tors, which was holding a
meeting to discuss areas of
conflict in Latin America.
The rabbi also received a
letter of solidarity from WJC
Secretary-General Israel
Singer.
The brazen attack on the
rabbi follows a recent spray-
painting of swastikas in the
Once neighborhood of
Buenos Aires, a Jewish area
where Rabbi Benhamu
lives.



An eye for an eye, a tooth for
a tooth. Exodus 21:24

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