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Countergraffiti on already-defaced Workmen’s Circle wall

A previously defaced mural in a largely Orthodox Jewish neighborhood has now been marked further with graffiti, changing the words “Free Palestine!!!” to “F--- Palestine!!!” using a expletive.
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February 7, 2014

UPDATE: Painting love over hate on vandalized mural

A new, expletive graffiti covering the words “Free Palestine!!!!” that had defaced a mural at the headquarters of Yiddish organization Workmen’s Circle, was discovered on the building on Friday morning, Feb. 7.

“F— Palestine!!!!” now appears on the on the building, which is located on Robertson Boulevard. Hershl Hartman, a member of the Workmen’s Circle district committee, said Friday that this new defacement proves “that there are idiots on both sides [of the Israeli-Palestinian debate].”

“Steps would be taken soon” to clean the mural, which appears on the south-facing wall of the building, Hartman said.

The defacement of the mural at 1525 S. Robertson Blvd. in the Pico-Robertson neighborhood was discovered on Feb. 6, with block letters covering the length of the wall-sized image.

The painted image itself –  titled, ”A shenere un besere velt,” according to the Mural Conservancy of Los Angeles (a Yiddish phrase meaning, “A more beautiful and better world) – depicts cultural, biblical and historical imagery. The imagery includes a menorah, Israelites wandering in the desert, a young girl waving Israeli and American flags, and more.

Hartman said he will convene with the group’s leadership to figure out how to respond to the latest incident, which he called  “extremism.”

The organization reported the first incident on Feb. 6 to the LAPD’s graffiti hotline of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). The organization expects the LAPD to respond within a “few days,” Hartman said.

While no suspects have been identified, Ruth Judkowitz, chair of the Los Angeles affiliate of Workmen’s Circle, released a statement on Feb. 6 inviting a dialogue with the vandal(s).

“We invite those responsible for the slogan-painting to meet with us to discuss far more effective ways of encouraging progress toward a lasting peace between the Israeli and Palestinian states and their peoples,” she said.

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