Northeastern investigates act of antisemitic vandalism

BOSTON (AP) — Northeastern University is investigating an act of antisemitic vandalism that the school’s president calls “despicable.”

President Joseph Aoun in a message to the campus community posted on the school’s website said a Jewish religious symbol known as a mezuzah was desecrated at Northeastern’s Hillel House near the Boston campus.

Campus police are investigating and they do not think the suspect is affiliated with the university, he wrote.

A mezuzah is a container containing a sacred scroll that’s affixed to a doorpost to remind the occupants of their connection to God.

“No matter its origin, this despicable act has left members of our Jewish community justifiably upset, saddened, and even fearful,” Aoun wrote. “They are experiencing firsthand an instance of senseless hate, coming at a time when the ancient scourge of antisemitism is on the rise across the U.S. and around the world.”

The vandalism was discovered last weekend.

Gilad Skolnick, executive director of Northeastern Hillel, told WCVB-TV that students found the mezuzah’s case lying on the ground in pieces and discovered that the parchment inside was missing.

A new mezuzah has already been put up and dedicated.