From protecting oneself to protecting one’s synagogue, Jews are preparing themselves.

Legion trains people in Krav Maga, active shooter, sudden confrontations, situational awareness, emergency first aid, and more. “We doubled our numbers immediately following 10/7,” said Meredith Weiss, Legion Co-founder and Chair of the Board.

Legion trains self-defense

Legion “partners with the best schools, and therefore instruction is world-renowned.” The owners of their schools are most of the time the head instructors leading their training programs.

Legion is a non-profit that gets funding from private individuals. They have classes in Brooklyn and Manhattan but there is a fee for their classes. Go to for more information.

Queens-based Gary Moskowitz trains civilians in martial arts, to be First Responders, and how to deal with active shooters.

Moskowitz was an NYPD Officer for nine years. He has Black Belts in Judo, Hapkido, Ju-Jitsu, and Karate. He also has s’michah from Rabbi Yaakov Spivak at Kollel Ayshel Avraham in Monsey.

Some of his tips for dealing with an active shooter are:

Sirens and 5,000-lumen lights can throw a shooter off balance. The lights “fit in your hand and blinds them for a second, and then other people can throw 3-5-pound weights.” “Weights have stopping power.” Dumbbells can be kept near where people sit.

Former New York police officers Gary Moskowitz (left) and David Goldberg practice anti-terror techniques in Queens

Have a loudspeaker with a recording saying, “This is the police. You are surrounded. Come out with your hands up.”

A recording with sounds of gunfire so the terrorist believes they are being shot at.

Throwing an ax, mallets, and the combat bow/arrow.

Bulletproof mechitzos (partitions) where people could hide behind.

Moskowitz is raising money “to open the first Jewish police academy in America.” Students would train for ten hours a day, six days a week for a year. Each day, the training would include four hours in martial arts (with and without weapons); shooting skills for one hour a day; how to conduct surveillance and investigations for one and a half hours a day; writing skills; and the law. Lessons about Modern Israel and anti-Semitism here would also be taught.

Moskowitz wants to create a Jewish Central Intelligence where people would go through public records, social media, and do briefs of articles found in newspapers.

Moskowitz’s training for people to become active resisters and noncombatants is free. Hundreds of people have already attended his seminars.

Moskowitz created the current Jewish National Guard in 1997, which has about 75 volunteers, “now, maybe more.” Their office is not publicized “for safety reasons.”

Sabre's keychain pepper spray is their best-selling item

Gary Moskowitz can be reached at 917-916-4681 and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. His website is

Community Security Service (CSS) trains people to protect synagogues and Jewish community events: “How to do access control, how to do fair meter security (physical and communications), how to do a search and sweep of a building, how to implement emergency procedures,” said Richard Priem, Interim Chief Executive Officer of CSS.

Their Usher and Greeter one-hour trainings give “practical skills to recognize threats to the Jewish community.” Interactive exercises focus “on deterring and detecting suspicious activity,” according to their website.

CSS staff and trainers include a former head of the US Secret Service, former law enforcement and military, and people who worked in private security.

CSS does this “through a Jewish lens” by enabling people “to leverage their knowledge of their community, of their religious backgrounds, to be more effective in implementing those security routines,” said Priem.

CSS has seen “a dramatic increase,” in applications and registrations, by almost 25%. “People feel concerned,” said Priem.

“People who didn’t necessarily think that they were threatened, or they knew about rising anti-Semitism, but they said, ‘Well, that’s never really going to affect me.’ Suddenly, the unthinkable has become thinkable.”

Attacks on Jews and synagogues, as well as campus protests, have “seen that translate in an unprecedented demand for our services.” Forty people from one synagogue signed up for CSS on one day.

People “are saying, I’m going to step up. I’m going to get trained. I’m going to get empowered, and I’m going to push back against this rising tide of anti-Semitism, and that’s something I get hope from,” said Priem.

CSS started with a group of volunteers at a synagogue on the Upper West Side in 2007. CSS has trained volunteers in 15-20 states and about 100 municipalities. Over 10,000 people have been trained and 4,500 are active volunteers. CSS will not say specifically which synagogues or volunteers they have.

For more information or to sign up for a training, go to

While not a self-defense group, Herut NYC has been conducting self-defense seminars, and sponsoring and cosponsoring rallies, protests, and counter-protests in New York City.

There has been “an increase in participation in actions since Octob

er 7. Jews want to do something to help and/or have a voice,” said Karen Lichtbraun, Community Organizer for Herut NYC.

Lichtbraun recently became a Community Organizer for Herut NYC because she saw “an opportunity for Zionists, Jews, and non-Jews to join an established organization with like-minded Zionists to celebrate Israel and stand against anti-Semitism.”

Herut, meaning freedom in Hebrew, was the name of Menachem Begin’s political party in Israel before Likud, meaning consolidation or unity, was formed in 1973.

For more information, message Herut NYC on Facebook or Instagram or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

There has been an overall 11% sales increase of self-protective devices since June 1, 2024, said David Nance, CEO of the online store, Sabre. Their compact keychain pepper sprays have been their most popular item. Sabre is limited by law in what they can sell in the New York City area.

By David Schneier