Authorities are calling the shooting at a Kansas Jewish Center a hate crime. The shooting left three people dead. The suspect is believed to be a white supremacist. The suspect's name is Frazier Glenn Cross, 73. He allegedly yelled a Nazi salute after the shooting. He was recorded screaming "Heil Hitler" during his arrest. This tragedy comes on the eve of Passover. Cross faces charges of premeditated first-degree murder.
It is another stark reminder of the chilling times we are living in and the sadness it brings to families and communities. The Anti-Defamation League warned last week of the increased possibility of violence against community centers in the coming weeks, "which coincide both with Passover holiday and Hitler's birthday on April 20th, a day which in the United States has been historically marked by extremist acts of violence and terrorism".
The ADL reissued a security bulletin to synagogues and Jewish institutions across the country urging them to review their security plans for the Passover holiday which begins today at sundown. Unfortunately throughout history, Jews have been a target around the holidays. Having worked for the ADL as the security director, I have first hand knowledge of hate groups and the threats they pose against Jewish institutions. I also helped create security awareness programs for the Jewish community.
The killing of three people at the Kansas Jewish sites suggest that although hate groups can be seen on the decline in the United States, some among them are still deadly dangerous.