Communications Minister Ayoub Kara and Chabad Rabbi Avraham Wolff outside Ze'ev Jabotinsky's home with a Mezuzah-shaped plaque marking the spot..
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The home of Likud ideological forebear Ze’ev Jabotinsky in Odessa will be turned into a historic site rather than be demolished, following the efforts of Communications Minister Ayoub Kara.
Kara flew to Ukraine last week after local media reports said Jabotinsky’s childhood home, built in 1880 on Odessa’s historic Jewish Street, was in danger. Seven high-rises are set to be built in close proximity to the building. Its current residents sent letters to President Reuven Rivlin and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko expressing concern the home would face irreparable damage.
Kara visited Jabotinsky’s house with local Chabad Rabbi Avraham Wolff, who introduced him to Odessa Mayor Gennadiy Trukhanov. Kara encouraged Trukhanov to save the home of “one of the fathers of modern Zionism, an extraordinary and significant person, and a great leader who we grew up learning about and admiring.”
Kara met with other municipality officials as well, who promised that the structure in which Jabotinsky lived will be preserved as a Jewish and Zionist heritage site. In addition, Odessa will dedicate an “Israeli” park named after Jabotinsky.
“When I heard about the intention to ruin this piece of history, I immediate went to help,” Kara said. “I’m glad it was within my power to prevent the decree and continue giving the respect the father of the Revisionist movement, Ze’ev Jabotinsky, deserves.”
Kara added his feeling that turning Jabotinsky’s home into a historic site and dedicating the new park will help improve relations between the Jewish people and residents of Odessa.
“I returned to Israel with a feeling of great satisfaction,” he said. “I have no doubt this is good, special news.”