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ORANGE COUNTY FOCUS | MISSION VIEJO

Trustee Wants Extremists Investigated

March 25, 1998|ROBERT OURLIAN

A community college trustee facing a renewed recall campaign has asked the district to investigate a militant Jewish group whose leader supports the trustee's recall.

The trustee, Steven Frogue, publicly asked that the South Orange County Community College District's campus security investigate whether the Jewish Defense League has ever been associated with violent acts.

Frogue made the request Monday night before voting in favor of a $100 honorarium for national JDL Chairman Irv Rubin, who is speaking today at a history class at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo.

"His organization has been involved in violent acts, not only in Southern California, but in Boston and elsewhere," Frogue said. "Would it be possible to have campus security run a check on him and the JDL?"

Frogue said he could not be sure about the allegations of violence but said he has "heard charges." No action was taken on the request.

"He hates Jews--it's just that simple," Rubin said Tuesday. "Next, he'll accuse us of poisoning the wells. To my mind, he's just a neo-Nazi."

Mainstream Jewish groups consider the Jewish Defense League extremist and keep their distance from it, but question Frogue's motives for seeking an investigation of the group.

At a meeting of trustees Monday night, Frogue was served with a notice of a second recall effort, an effort Frogue denounced. An earlier recall effort was halted this month when supporters failed to gather the 38,000 signatures required.

The recall centers on Frogue's proposal last year to hold a seminar on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy that was to feature a panel of speakers, one of them the author of a book that purports to tie Israel to the slaying. Recall proponents also oppose Frogue's administrative views.

In addition to students and teachers, Jewish groups and gay and lesbian organizations said they support the recall.

Frogue has repeatedly said that he is not anti-Jewish and that he respects Jews. The seminar was canceled because of protests.

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