On Wednesday morning at about 2:00 am local Ukraine time, a gang of anti-Semitic vandals came to Rabbi Nachman’s gravesite in Uman and desecrated the site. Witnesses say they had shaved heads and seem to be connected with neo-Nazis in the area. Rabbi Elhadad an administrator at the gravesite said he saw a man come in to stake the area out. Quite often non-Jewish worshippers come to pray so we didn’t think anything was out of the ordinary. But then two others came in and they threw a pigs head and red paint into the synagogue on the site and also attacked the worshippers there with tear gas. Two Israeli visitors were sent to the hospital for treatment. Witnesses said “we were saved from murder only by the grace of heaven.”
After hearing about the desecration and vandalism Yair Lapid, chairman of the Yesh Atid Party in Israel contacted the Ukraininan Ambassador to Israel and urged the Ukrainians to ramp up security for Israeli visitors to Uman and to seek out and punish the perpetrators.
He said; “I was shocked to hear about the violent… anti-Semitic incident… in the compound of Rabbi Nachman’s tomb in Uman. It was “reminiscent of the darkest days in the history of the Jewish people in Europe. I expect your government… to capture… and bring them to justice quickly.”
Aryeh Deri, Minister of the Interior, also stated: “I was utterly horrified to hear about the terrible desecration and the act of barbarism committed last night at the holy tomb of Rabbi Nachman in Uman. I will contact the Ukrainian President today (so that) action is taken quickly against the attackers and to increase security at the site.”