Des Plaines, IL – A northwest suburban Jewish congregation will install a security system at its synagogue after a small bomb exploded at its doorstep earlier this month on the anniversary of a World War II atrocity.
The Jewish congregation of Lubavitch Chabad of Niles has a synagogue in unincorporated Des Plaines, which was the target of a “MacGyver” type fire bomb, authorities reported.
Rabbi Naftoly Hershkovich, co-director of the synagogue, discovered the homemade device the morning of Sunday, Nov. 9 between the screen door and front door of the converted house at 9401 Margate Ave., according to Penny Mateck, spokeswoman for the Cook County Sheriff’s Police.
The bomb — created from a plastic pop bottle, aluminum foil and chemicals — had gone off sometime earlier. No one was there at the time and no one was injured, Mateck said.
Nov. 9 was the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht, translated as “the night of broken glass,” the night in 1938 when Nazis in Germany burned 1,350 Jewish synagogues, according to Avraham Hershkovich, synagogue’s spokesman.
“It was a big shock for our congregation members, many of whom come from Eastern Europe and other parts of Europe. They didn’t expect such anti-Semitism here. Some, who had lived through the Kristallnacht and Holocaust, were very upset,” Hershkovich said.
The congregation, which had been located in Niles before moving to unincorporated Des Plaines, will set up surveillance cameras and an alarm system, he added.
The sheriff’s office was investigating.