Friday, June 17, 2005

Jewish Cemetaries Desecrated In London and Budapest

From Associated Press:

LONDON - Vandals desecrated 86 tombstones dating to the 1870s in a Jewish cemetery in London, spraying some of them with Nazi swastikas and racial slurs while knocking them over, police said Thursday.

The attack was reported a day after Hungarian authorities said about 130 tombstones were knocked down and broken at the Kozma Street Jewish Cemetery in Budapest. Culture Minister Andras Bozoki said the government would "provide all assistance" necessary to repair the tombstones.

London police said a large hole was made in the heavy wooden doors of a mausoleum building in West Ham Jewish Cemetery, and the structure was sprayed with swastikas. The mausoleum contained members of the wealthy Rothschild banking dynasty.

Dozens of headstones around the mausoleum lay on the ground, some of them cracked or caved in. Jagged knee-high bases stood over the broken fragments of the stones, which previously stood about 5 feet tall. The barely legible inscriptions were mostly in Hebrew.