A big mural portrait of Vladimir (Zeev) Jabotinsky, a famous writer and journalist from Odessa, ideologist of fighting Zionism, founder of the Jewish Legion and the Irgun underground organisation, appeared on the side wall of house number 33 on Bazarnaya Street, where he was born and raised.
The ceremonial opening of the mural took place yesterday in the presence of the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the State of Israel to Ukraine Joel Lyon.
We all know that Odessa without Jews is not Odessa. And I also wanted to add that in Jewish culture, Jews without Odessa are not Jews. It is a great honor for me on the eve of Israel’s Independence Day to unveil this mural dedicated to a person who is directly connected and is one of the founders of the modern state of Israel.Joel Lyon, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the State of Israel to Ukraine
According to him, this is the first work within the framework of the Ukrainian-Israeli project Art Speaks History: Ukrainian muralist artists are involved in creating portraits of Israeli figures whose youth passed in Ukraine (before leaving for Israel).
The work to create a portrait of Jabotinsky began on April 5, 2021. It was painted by the Odessa artist Lesya Verba.
Vladimir (Zeev) Jabotinsky was born and studied in Odessa. He immediately worked for the newspapers “Odessa leaf” and “Odessa news”. He created the first Jewish self-defense detachment in Russia. In 1904, he moved to St. Petersburg.
During the First World War, Jabotinsky worked as his own correspondent for the newspaper “Russkiye Vedomosti” on the Western Front and in North Africa. While in Egypt, he formed the so-called Jewish Legion, which became part of the British army. He participated in hostilities in Palestine, where he stayed to live after the war.
In the 1920s, Jabotinsky advocated the creation of a Jewish state and insisted on a military solution to the issue of independence. He stood at the origins of the terrorist organisation “Irgun”, which committed the murder of employees of the British administration of Palestine.
In 1935, he coordinated the New Zionist Organisation (NZO), which led independent political activities for free immigration. He died on August 4, 1940 in New York.
From the revisionist movement created by Jabotinsky emerged the modern Israeli right, whose interests are represented by the ruling party Likud bloc. The leader of Likud is Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister of the State of Israel.