After a video with Arabic subtitles shot outside a nearby synagogue leaked on TikTok, security has been ramped up in Surfside, Florida. Shlomo Danzinger, the mayor of Surfside, claims that the video was recorded on October 2nd at a Simchas Beis Hashoeiva celebration outside The Shul, which is situated on Collins Avenue at 95th Street.
In light of the terror attack this past weekend, Surfside officials recently learned about the clip and are treating it carefully. According to Danzinger, “We can’t be complacent.” What does it mean for someone to be recording while moving through a crowd?
The opening of the tape features images taken at 26 Sushi & Tapas, one of many kosher eateries near Harding Avenue.
The focus of the video then shifts to Chol Hamoed Succos celebrations outside The Shul, where men, women, and kids can be seen participating in inflatable rides, face painting, and other events.
The video briefly focuses on The Shul’s founder, Rabbi Shalom Lispkar, and shows an Arabic caption that purports to refer to the 77-year-old as “their rabbi” before concluding with a map of the neighborhood that features the well-known synagogue and a number of kosher eateries.
In response to the bloodshed in Israel, security has been increased in Surfside. Israel Defense Forces teams were sent to Surfside to assist with the rescue and recovery work following the Champlain Towers collapse in June 2021, forging strong links between the city and Israel as a result.
In appreciation for Israel’s support during the Florida catastrophe, local officials adopted a motion in October 2022 to designate Surfside and Shomron, Israel, sister cities. Danzinger increased security in the neighborhood on Simchas Torah to give worshippers a sense of security after news of the terror assault in Israel came over the weekend.
This allowed them to do their customary final hakafah of the day outside on Collins Avenue.
Danzinger admitted that he had to call the police to arrange a meeting. “They know not to call me on a holiday unless there is an emergency, so I told them, ‘You understand what it means that I am calling you today—what is going on here and the fear.’ They set up a perimeter and a plan because the community was scared.”