NEW YORK (CBS 2) – In the tri-state, synagogues are seeing a heavier police presence as the packages in Friday’s bomb plot were addressed to synagogues in Chicago.
Area Jewish centers are on edge, and stepping up their security, in the wake of the threats.
NYPD officers were stationed outside Temple Emanuel on Manhattan’s East Side Saturday, a safety precaution for the synagogue as members worried about their faith being targeted by terrorists.
“I think it’s outrageous – I think it’s terrible,” East Side resident Saul Friedman said. “I think you have to be very careful.”
“I think it’s terrible that people have to be disturbed from their worship, whatever religion you are,” Bronx resident Millie Weisbarte said.
The heightened security came on the heels of international authorities seizing two explosive packages in cargo planes bound for synagogues in the Chicago area.
One package was discovered in Dubai. The other was found at a central England airport, containing a toner cartridge, cell phone parts, a syringe, and the same type of explosive used in the failed underwear bombing attempt in Detroit on Christmas Day.
The Anti-Defamation League warned synagogues across the U.S. to be on-guard.
“I think, unfortunately, synagogues are a natural target in this atmosphere,” Abe Carson, also of the East Side, said.
Carson joined dozens of synagogue members in a show of solidarity. It was a similar scene at Congregation Yetev Lev Satmar in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, where many were aware, and disturbed, by the terror threats.
“There are elements of society in this world who target people for who they are, and I think that’s an additional reason to continue to go to services,” Carson said.
“All we can do is go in and pray that there will be some peace,” Weisbarte said.
It is those prayers for peace that drew members to synagogues across the city, members undeterred by the terror threats.