Terrorism Threat in Prague

Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 01:54 PM
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Terrorism Threat in Prague

Just read this news flash from Radio Prague. The city is under high alert - especially the Jewish quarter. (9/23/06)

The Czech capital, Prague, is under a high-alert security watch. At an
extraordinary overnight session that began at 23:00 on Friday night, the
Czech cabinet decided to increase security measures in the capital
city—effective immediately—because of a possible terrorist threat.
Prague's Ruzyne airport has implemented what are being described
as "massive security measures," though no flights have
been cancelled. The city centre and other possible targets are also being
patrolled by additional specialized police units, and the police chief
says that there is no need to call for the army's assistance at
this time. On Saturday morning, Czech Interior Minister Ivan Langer said
that it is the first time that the Czech Republic faces such a concrete
threat.

Shortly after the measures were announced, a bomb threat was called in
that resulted in the closure of Prague's metro line
'C' for about an hour. No explosive was found.

The daily Pravo's on-line service, Novinky, writes that the
terrorist threat is related to the Jewish New Year, and that
Prague's Jewish district of Josefov likely faces the most serious
threat. Speaking at a press conference, Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek said
that he would neither deny nor confirm the reports. Authorities have said
that the situation in the Czech capital is connected to Friday's
developments in Norway, where four men were arrested and police are said
to have uncovered a terrorist plot to bomb the Israeli and American
embassies in Norway.

http://www.radio.cz
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 02:03 PM
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Soooo frustrating.

Thanks for the news.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 02:29 PM
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Yea, nothing like pleasing your god by killing a bunch of people who have a different god than you do.
 
Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 02:52 PM
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I think one thing to get from it is that the Jewish Quarter is one of the most vulnerable spots in that city. A bomb went off outside a casino near there a few summers ago (I was in town when it happened). I tend to avoid that area whenever I'm in town if there has been any kind of general terroristic threat anywhere in the world. Obviously, it is a hot spot politically, and there are also tons of people around there.

Also, the Radio Free Europe building near the National Museum has been a target for years, but they are supposed to move to a different location.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 02:59 PM
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That is terrible, sad, and worrisome for the people who live in Prague and many of our fodorites who love Prague.
Hopefully, nothing will happen.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 03:12 PM
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>>>>>
On Saturday morning, Czech Interior Minister Ivan Langer said
that it is the first time that the Czech Republic faces such a concrete
threat.
>>>>>

there have been many threats (deamed serious and concrete) over the last several years.

anyone else think it's ironic that the radio "free" europe compound in prague looks like a fortress with barbed wire and cement anti car bomb barricades all around it?
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 03:15 PM
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It's news like this that make the wardrobe threads look downright silly.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 03:21 PM
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I agree, but when such threats in the world continue and tragedy strikes at home in other forms, you need some light-hearted topics to keep us afloat but not forget what is happening.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 03:49 PM
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They didn't even find bombs on the platform like they did in Cologne a few days ago. Just a "general threat" so what...
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 04:28 PM
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Huh? I guess I'm more nervous when they don't find the bombs than when they do!
 
Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 04:37 PM
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The non english version says in line two: It's a 4 weeks old threat and the govenment is using it a a cover up of for a wiretaping scandal. Yeah, they're smart those politicians...
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 06:14 PM
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Prague has long been a target of religious fanatics because of it's long history of religions tolerance. Before the Nazis it was the one city in europe that was about equally Catholic, Protestant and Jewish.

I must admit that it was very moving touring the Jewish quater and seeing the surname of my grandparents everywhere (I don;t know if members of the family belonged to all 3 religions or if it is just such a common Czech name that it turns up everywhwere.)
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 06:22 PM
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Logos,

Are you referring to the bombs found in Cologne and Koblenz (I think) train stations?

We never heard much about that, I'd be interested to read more about that "find".

Thanks,
MvK
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Old Sep 23rd, 2006, 07:09 PM
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In 2002 (I think) some lunatic threw some sort of explosive onto the tracks at the Museum stop of the metro. Turned out he was not a terrorist, but a depressed Russian. A cop tried to catch him & the guy killed the cop. I am vaguely recalling all of this, because I was there at the time, and read about it in the newspaper.

So, wild stuff happens over there all the time, and Mohamed Atta was supposedly there before 9/11 (anyone remember that story?!) With Semtex explosives manufactured over there, I'm surprised we don't see more bombings.
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Old Sep 24th, 2006, 01:23 AM
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>bombs found in Cologne and Koblenz
It was on TV every day here (as well as the Gammelfleisch you get at Donisl and Hirschgarten Restaurants). Two young libanese students put two very sophisticated suitcase bombs on the trains. They didn't detonate because of a design flaw but were capable of killing hundereds. Both of then were caught on surveillance tape an the public hunt began. One kid was tracked to Kiel where he was studying. The other was found by libanese intelligence back in Lebanon. A third person was arrested in southern Württemberg. They showed intervies of one students dad on TV. "Why do you think you son wants to kill innocent people and plants bombs?". "I don't bevieve he did it, if he did it it's no logner my son. When he came back from Germany without excuse for not studying, I used my leather belt! He's not a bad boy".
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Old Sep 24th, 2006, 01:28 AM
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This was about a month ago. Wonder if any tourist has tasted delicious Bavarian Gammelfleisch? It seems infos on current Germany are rare and "outdated" ;-) abroad
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Old Sep 24th, 2006, 02:11 AM
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We're waiting here for the taxi in our Josefov district hotel, having attended Rosh Hashanah services Friday night and yesterday at the Spanish Synagogue. Given this news I now understand why the (visiting) rabbi made a special point about leaving the aisles clear in case we needed to evacuate in a hurry. We have to miss the shofar service today because we're heading home after a few days here and 3 weeks in Africa before that.

There were a couple of armed cops outside the synagogue Friday night and yesterday, as well as the usual security at the door (which is now pretty standard in big-city synagogues around the world I assume) but nothing very elaborate. Yesterday over at the Alt-Neu Shul (where there are services at two or three neighboring synagogues - Pinkas, Alt-Neu itself, and I think the Jerusalem) there were several cops standing around looking conspicuous yesterday, but given it's a pretty high-profile district, and that Prague is presently full of tourists, again, it wasn't much of a surprise.

What was moving was that the temple was full on Friday night, with a lot of little kids running around. The head of the Bejt Praha congregation made a comment that struck home - he said, "You know, after nine years of Nazism and 40 of communism, it's not easy for someone to jump up in Prague and say, 'Sign me up as a member of the Prague Jewish community!'"

But there they were, and here they'll be, and threats and all, they aren't going anywhere. Not as long as there are apples and honey and little kids running around in the shul.

Happy new year everyone - L'shanah tovah. May it be a good and sweet year.
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Old Sep 24th, 2006, 02:18 AM
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Happy New Year, Gardyloo!
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Old Sep 24th, 2006, 06:40 AM
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L'shanah tovah to you & your family, Gardyloo. I'm especially pleased to hear that the community in Prague is strong enough to support a filled shul.

When I visited the so-called "Jewish Quarter" a few years, I found it heartbreaking that there were old shuls, the cemetery, souvenir stands, tourist groups -- but virtually no Jews. On that day, at least, the Jewish Quarter was more a museum than a living part of a city.
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Old Sep 24th, 2006, 08:13 AM
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>>>>
but virtually no Jews.
>>>>

not surprising, czech republic has very few jews
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