Idealistic Jewish Student Killed in Egypt Violence

Andrew Pochter Taught Children English — Worked for 'Peace'

Crisis Escalates: Raging anti-government protests in Egypt have claimed the life of an American Jewish exchange student.
getty images
Crisis Escalates: Raging anti-government protests in Egypt have claimed the life of an American Jewish exchange student.

By Reuters

Published June 29, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

A Jewish college student stabbed to death during a protest in Egypt was in the country to teach English to children and improve his Arabic, his family said.

READ: Full Forward profile. How Jewish values drove Andrew Pochter to help others.

Andrew Pochter, 21, from Chevy Chase, Maryland, was active in his college’s Hillel,. He died after being stabbed in the chest on Friday in the coastal city of Alexandria, where anti-government protesters stormed an office of the ruling Muslim Brotherhood.

“As we understand it, he was witnessing a protest as a bystander and was stabbed by a protester,” said a statement from the family.

Andrew Pochter
courtesy of pochter family
Andrew Pochter

Egyptian officials said he was carrying a small camera.

Pochter’s family said he had travelled to Alexandria for the summer to teach English to 7- and 8-year-old Egyptian children and to improve his Arabic.

“He had studied in the region, loved the culture, and planned to live and work there in the pursuit of peace and understanding,” read the statement, that asked for privacy in a time of grieving.

Pochter was looking forward to beginning his junior year at Ohio’s Kenyon College and had planned to study abroad in Jordan next spring, according to the statement.

A statement from Kenyon College said Pochter was interning in Alexandria with AMIDEAST, an American non-profit organisation that runs education and development programs in the Middle East and North America.

A State Department spokeswoman confirmed that Andrew Pochter was killed on Friday in Alexandria.

“We extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends,” Marie Harf said. Harf said the U.S. embassy in Cairo and the State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs were providing “appropriate consular assistance.”

The Muslim Brotherhood said eight of its offices had been attacked on Friday during the protest, including the one in Alexandria. Officials said more than 70 people had been injured in the clashes in the city, adding to growing tension ahead of mass rallies on Sunday aimed at unseating President Mohamed Mursi.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • "Let’s not fall into the simplistic us/them dichotomy of 'we were just minding our business when they started firing rockets at us.' We were not just minding our business. We were building settlements, manning checkpoints, and filling jails." What do you think?
  • PHOTOS: 10,000 Israel supporters gathered for a solidarity rally near the United Nations in New York yesterday.
  • Step into the Iron Dome with Tuvia Tenenbom.
  • What do you think of Wonder Woman's new look?
  • "She said that Ruven Barkan, a Conservative rabbi, came into her classroom, closed the door and turned out the lights. He asked the class of fourth graders to lie on the floor and relax their bodies. Then, he asked them to pray for abused children." Read Paul Berger's compelling story about a #Savannah community in turmoil:
  • “Everything around me turns orange, then a second of silence, then a bomb goes off!" First installment of Walid Abuzaid’s account of the war in #Gaza:
  • Is boredom un-Jewish?
  • Let's face it: there's really only one Katz's Delicatessen.
  • "Dear Diaspora Jews, I’m sorry to break it to you, but you can’t have it both ways. You can’t insist that every Jew is intrinsically part of the Israeli state and that Jews are also intrinsically separate from, and therefore not responsible for, the actions of the Israeli state." Do you agree?
  • Are Michelangelo's paintings anti-Semitic? Meet the Jews of the Sistine Chapel: http://jd.fo/i4UDl
  • What does the Israel-Hamas war look like through Haredi eyes?
  • Was Israel really shocked to find there are networks of tunnels under Gaza?
  • “Going to Berlin, I had a sense of something waiting there for me. I was searching for something and felt I could unlock it by walking the streets where my grandfather walked and where my father grew up.”
  • How can 3 contradictory theories of Yiddish co-exist? Share this with Yiddish lovers!
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.