Israeli Consul General:
'It felt like the home of Fogel family in Itamar'

Israel's Consul General in New York, Dani Dayan, describes his feelings after visiting the site of the shooting attack in Pittsburgh.

Elad Benari ,

Dani Dayan at the site of the Pittsburgh attack
Dani Dayan at the site of the Pittsburgh attack

Israel's Consul General in New York, Dani Dayan, who arrived in Pittsburgh following the massacre at the Tree of Life synagogue where 11 people were murdered, discussed his feelings in an interview with Reshet Bet radio on Sunday.

"I arrived in Pittsburgh and before going to the hotel I thought I would pass by the site of the murder, just to light a memorial candle and bow my head and shed a tear," the Consul recalled. "I will hold meetings with members of the Jewish community, the governor of Pennsylvania and also the mayor of Pittsburgh. There are roadblocks at the site of the murder, and access is denied. The bodies are still in the synagogue and ZAKA and Chevra Kadisha are waiting outside until they are permitted to enter.”

"I had a feeling of Déjà vu of the moment I arrived at the home of the Fogel family when that family was murdered in Itamar. In that attack as well the bodies were still inside the house. It's a very difficult scene," Dayan said.

The consul continued, "I know the Pittsburgh community very well and I love it very much. This is a Jewish community that is typical of a city that is neither too small nor too big. Usually the Jewish neighborhoods are in the suburbs, but here the Jewish neighborhood is in the city. You walk there and you know you are inside a Jewish neighborhood. There are restaurants with Hebrew names and synagogues. It’s a very cohesive and Zionist community that has suffered a severe blow."

On the situation of the Jewish communities in the United States, Dayan said, "I think that until today, the communities lived with the feeling that this cannot happen, but there has been an increase in anti-Semitism. Louis Farrakhan called the Jews termites, and there is also a woman about to be elected to Congress from Minnesota who said that Jews are hypnotizing the world. This is an anti-Semitic statement. In hindsight, why not? This is a country where there are incidents involving weapons on a daily basis. One time it's a crazy fanatic who hates blacks and one time it’s a madman who hates gays and opens fire in Orlando. So why would there not be a madman who hates Jews?"