The families of five of the students killed in the 2008 terrorist attack on the Mercaz Harav Yeshiva in Jerusalem have filed a $1 billion lawsuit against the Bank of China for making money transfers to Hamas. The lawsuit filed Tuesday in New York State court accuses the bank of making several millions of dollars in wire transfers for the terrorist organization beginning in 2003.
Last week's terrorist attack at a Jerusalem yeshiva and the new Israeli national intelligence assessment presented to the Cabinet on Sunday underscore the acute security problems Israel faces this year and beyond.
Let me tell you why you should feel for these yeshiva students: Because while you don't identify with them, they identified with you. I'm sure they might have reserved their own, passionate critique of your secular Tel Aviv lifestyle, but they sat in that yeshiva not merely because it gave them joy and a spiritual high, but because they wanted you to be safe.
There are moments when half a world away seems right around the corner. At Young Israel of Century City (YICC) on Sunday afternoon, Israel's pain at the murder of eight young yeshiva students burned through the Los Angeles Jewish community, just as it has in Jerusalem, where the boys lived, and as it has through Jewish communities throughout the world. The death of eight innocent boys studying Torah at Yeshiva Mercaz Harav shrunk the world.
Demonstrations and counter demonstrations in Los Angeles following the terrorist attack on Mercaz Harav yeshiva.
"You hear about tragedies in Israel, but it hits so close to home because this is us next year. Next year we're going to yeshiva," said Chaim Gamzo, a 17-year-old senior. "These guys had their whole lives ahead of them -- like me. I hope to go to yeshiva, to go to college, to have a normal successful life, but they didn't have the opportunity to do that."
In the close-knit world of religious Zionism, no one feels far removed from the grief for eight young people gunned down while studying Talmud in their Jerusalem yeshiva.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center and Young Israel of Century City are holding a memorial rally on Sunday, March 9 at 4 p.m., in honor of the eight yeshiva students killed in a terror attack at Mercaz Harav in Jerusalem. StandWithUs and others will demonstrate in support of Israel in front of the Israeli Consulate at noon on Friday in response to a protest scheduled at the same time by the UC Irvine Muslim Student Union.
Thousands of mourners turned out Friday for the funerals of the eight students, aged 15 to 26, killed in Thursday's attack at a prominent yeshiva in Jerusalem.
While Israel's eyes were focused on the security threat from the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, terrorism struck in the heart of the Jewish state. A gunman stormed into the Yeshivat Mercaz Harav complex in west Jerusalem late Thursday, mowing down students who had gathered in the dining room for the traditionally intensive pre-Shabbat classes. Medical officials put the death toll at eight, with at dozens wounded, several critically.