This day in history: The forgotten Jewish stories of September 11

Bin Laden blames the "US-Israeli alliance" for the attack

September 11, 2015 08:31
2 minute read.
The second tower of the World Trade Center bursts into flames after being hit by a hijacked airplane

The second tower of the World Trade Center bursts into flames after being hit by a hijacked airplane in New York on September 11, 2001.. (photo credit: REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Every year, Sept. 11 is commemorated across the United States in schools, synagogues and other public places. But 14 years on, some of the fallout from the devastating attack has inevitably slipped from public memory. Here are five forgotten stories of Sept. 11 that involve the Jewish community.

1. Orthodox Jewish widows left as "chained women"

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

The National Institute of Justice called the task of identifying the dead in the wake of Sept. 11 the “greatest forensic challenge ever undertaken in this country.” With so many bodies unaccounted for, many Orthodox Jewish women whose husbands worked in the World Trade Center became “agunot,” or “chained women” — unable to remarry due to lack of confirmation that their husbands were dead. Nearly 1,600 victims of the attack were identified, but over 1,100 were not, and some of the identifications did not meet the high standards of Orthodox Jewish law.

2. Jews ambivalent about a Ground Zero mosque

When a group of Muslims proposed to open an Islamic cultural center near Ground Zero in 2009, the idea quickly caused controversy across a city community still rattled by the attack. Even Jewish groups that frequently side with Muslims on freedom of religion cases were skeptical of the project. The Anti-Defamation League flatly opposed the idea, and the American Jewish Committee expressed reservations about the plan.

3. Bin Laden blames the "US-Israeli alliance" for the attack

As an on-the-run fugitive in 2007, Osama bin Laden found time to blame the infamous terror strike on what he termed past Israeli “killing” in Palestine and Lebanon. “The truth, as I said before, is that the Manhattan events were in retaliation for the killing of our kinfolk in Palestine and Lebanon by the US Israeli alliance and that I am responsible for them,” the Sept. 11 mastermind said in a videotaped message.


4. Jews plot revenge attack

Just three months after Sept. 11, two members of the militant Jewish Defense League were charged with planning bombing attacks on Muslim targets in Southern California, including the office of Republican Congressman Darrell Issa (who is of Lebanese descent). While many Jewish groups condemned the plotters, who pled guilty to the charges, a lawyer for one of the men said the government was overreacting in the wake of Sept. 11.

5. The rise in anti-Semitism

Polls have shown that most of the hate and racism triggered by September 11 has been aimed at American Muslims. But in the year following the attack, the ADL also found an 11 percent increase in reported anti-Semitic incidents. The ADL’s former national director Abraham Foxman said that much of the world “believes that Israel is responsible for 9/11.”

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

September 22, 2018
NJ store closes after a century of serving bar mitzvah boys, and mobsters