Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Did Rahm Emanuel cancel his son’s Kotel Bar Mitzvah following threats from Kahanists?

"Emanuel already told political officials about his intention to visit Israel for his son’s bar mitzvah about a year ago. But only last January did tangible rumors begin to surface about the planned celebration at the Western Wall. “We received a call from Emanuel’s bureau at the White House, in which they asked in principle about coordinating the bar mitzvah at the Western Wall,” said yesterday an official who is involved in coordinating VIP tours at the holy site. “But since then they have not contacted us again, and coordinating the visit of a figure on such a scale requires at least a month of advance preparation.”

The reason that Emanuel has canceled the Torah reading at the Western Wall may be a letter that his bureau received a few months ago from right wing activists Baruch Marzel and Itamar Ben Gvir, with a threat that they would take care to “blow up” the celebration. “We promise to accompany your son’s bar mitzvah events in Israel,” the two wrote to Emanuel, “we will make sure to receive you as you deserve to be received—not with flowers and candy, but with catcalls and disgust at what you represent.”"

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