13 December 2007
A Muslim student has saved a group of Jews being attacked on a New York subway train in an apparent hate crime. Hassan Askari, a student at Berkeley College in Manhattan, came to the aid of Walter Adler when he and three friends were attacked on a train running between Manhattan and Brooklyn on the night of 7 December, according to the 'Associated Press' (AP) news agency. Ten men and women, aged 19 and 20, verbally and physically assaulted Adler and his friends after they wished the assailants "Happy Chanukah" in response to their "Merry Christmas" wish. Askari, 20, tried to fight off the attackers, which gave Adler time to pull an emergency brake on the Brooklyn-bound train. The assailants were arrested at the next stop.
The attack is being investigated as a hate crime. One of the attackers reportedly had been arrested previously for a hate crime. "That a random Muslim kid helped some Jewish kids, that's what's positive about New York," Adler, 23, told AP. Adler suffered a broken nose.