Irv Rubin as he appears now and back in the Jewish Defense League's early days.

Chair of Jewish Defense League Arrested in Failed Bomb Plot

December 12, 2001 -- Irv Rubin, chairman of the Jewish Defense League (JDL), was arrested Tuesday in connection with a failed bombing plot, according to the Associated Press.

Rubin, 56, and Earl Krugel, 59, were taken into federal custody, and booked at the L.A. Metropolitan Detention Center, a federal facility.

FBI officials said the plot targeted Muslim organizations in the Los Angeles area and the office of a Congressman. Thom Mrozek of the U.S. Attorney’s Office said, “The bombing was not carried out.”

Rubin was arrested in 1977 following an explosion at the Beth Star Shalom Religious Center in North Hollywood, according to the book Nazis, Communists, Klansmen and Others on the Fringe. The book speculates those charges were dropped due to lack of evidence.

In 1982, the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee released a report entitled The Jewish Defense League: A Cult of Racism and Terror, A Threat to Arab-Americans. The report alleged several JDL members were involved in a series of events ranging from threats and harassment to pipe bombs.

“The JDL has a long history of directing violence against those it opposes,” says Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center. “If the latest accusation is true, it simply adds to the record of anti-democratic political violence this group has long espoused.”

Founded in 1968 by Meir Kahane, the JDL’s mission was to provide an armed response to anti-Semitic attacks in New York City. Kahane was assassinated in New York in1990. El Sayyid Nosair, an Egyptian-born Muslim, was convicted in connection with the murder.

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