UPDATE: Murder was Anti-Semitism
According to the latest report, Shmuel Tovol was murdered because he is a Jew, and it was a hate crime. Nothing more, nothing less.
The update includes information that clarifies previous reports. For example, he was not home--he had visited his family-owned store, and was inside when he heard the men around his car. He thought the car was being stolen, and offered the men money so they would leave the car alone.
However, the men were not there for the purpose of vandalism or for the purpose of money. They were there to murder a Jew.
'Motive for Murder at Uman was Anti-Semitism'
by Gil Ronen
Shmuel Tuboul, the Jewish man who was stabbed to death in Uman <http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/139769> , Ukraine, was murdered because he was a Jew, and anyone saying otherwise is misleading the public, according to Manny Schwartz, an old acquaintance of the Tuboul family. In an interview with Arutz Sheva's Hebrew-language radio newsmagazine, Schwartz stated: “Even if the authorities in the Ukraine try to hide this, he was killed because of his Judaism.”
Schwartz said Tuboul's appearance was obviously Jewish: he had a large kippah, long peyos (earlocks) and a beard. He noted that the murder occurred when the festivities marking the 200th anniversary of the passing of Rabbi Nachman reached peak pitch. "Shmuel went to his family-owned grocery store to get a drink for celebrating. He heard the noise of fighting outside and saw youths throwing stones at the car. He went out to them and summoned his brother Raphael. They thought that the attackers wanted to steal the car. He offered them money but to no avail. They tried to make the attackers flee. Then one of [the attackers] stabbed Shmuel twice directly in the heart.”
Schwartz added that the Jews who live in Uman are “well aware of the locals' character” and that they have solved numerous incidents of violence by paying money “so as not to raise the flames.” In this case, he said, there was no way of talking to the attackers, who had come to kill Jews and not for any other reason. "They did not take the wallet nor the cell phone," he noted. "There's no other reason. It was murder for murder's sake. All the circumstances indicate that the murder was because he was Jewish."
Asked if the hassidim at Uman are organizing for some kind of revenge, Schwartz said all the Jews' resources are now directed to returning of the victim's body to Israel for burial. "We do not want to create animosity with the neighbors," he said, but added that he expects local authorities to come up with a deterrent against the anti-Semites, by increasing police presence or some other means.
From what I can gather from the various news reports, this young man was in his home in Uman when he heard people vandalizing his car outside on the street.
He went to investigate, gave chase, called for his brother to come to his aid, and, as he caught up with one of the suspects, was knifed in the chest.
His brother was then attacked by the group of drunk Ukranians, and only avoided being stabbed by grabbing a shovel from one of them and knocking the knife out of the hand of the murderer.
We can sit and point fingers and say why we think this has happened, but that is not helpful and may, in fact, be hurtful. The bottom line is this: A Jew, a young Chatan, was murdered. He was innocent. His brother, who was also innocent, was almost killed.
Let us show him, his family, and his friends, and, primarily, his Kallah, the respect due for those mourning the death of one they loved and not let anything get in the way of our outrage and united demand that this crime is fully investigated and prosecuted.
May this family and his Kallah be comforted by Hashm.
Breslover Chassid Murdered Near Rabbi Nachman's Tomb in Uman
by Chana Ya'ar
The 19-year-old Israeli, Shmuel Tuvol, had come with his brother Refoel to pray at the grave of his Rebbe, whose leadership to this day continues to guide the Chassidic sect.
The two brothers were staying at a home owned by their family in Kiryat Breslov in Uman, near Rabbi Nachman's tomb, when three Ukrainians began hurling rocks at the victim's car. Shmuel called Refael to help him as he was being pelted with stones, but suddenly found himself stabbed in the chest.
“Refael, they stabbed me in the heart!,” he cried out to his brother, according to a report on the Hareidi site Chaderei Hareidim. The last words he heard his brother say before he lapsed into unconsciousness were: “I'm dying . . .”
Rushing to his aid, Shmuel's brother Refael was also attacked by the gang who beat him severely with a shovel. The three thugs also tried to stab the young Chassid, using the weapon they had used to murder his brother. Despite his injuries, Refael managed to wrest the shovel away, and knocked the knife out of their hands. As they fled, he called for help.
Shmuel was pronounced dead on the operating table after he and his brother were rushed to the local hospital. Refael suffered wounds to the mouth and legs.
Two of the three attackers also later showed up at the hospital, seeking assistance for injuries suffered in the struggle. Because doctors had been updated about the incident, the police were immediately called, and the suspects were arrested.
A delegation comprised of ZAKA's Ukraine director, Rabbi Yaakov Zilberman, and Kiev Chief Rabbi Moshe Reuven Asman immediately came to the hospital to ensure there would be no desecration of Tuvol's body. Authorities are working to return the victim to Israel for burial. The police chief of Uman also opened an investigation into the murder, and vowed to apprehend the third killer.
Each year, thousands of Breslov Chassidim make an annual pilgrimage to Uman to visit the tomb of Rabbi Nachman, the great-grandson of the Ba'al Shem Tov (founder of the Chassidic movement).
No More Uman
Two years ago, Jewish teachers in the Ukraine were attacked by anti-Semites who beat with metal rods while screaming, “Kikes, leave Ukraine!” Less than a month before, a Ukrainian politician had also reportedly called for a “purge of Jews” who he said had “seized power” in Ukraine.
A number of Israeli rabbis oppose traveling to Uman for the Jewish holidays in the Hebrew month of Tishrei, contending it is forbidden to quit the Holy Land for the Diaspora during such holy days.
Moreover, at least one group of Breslov Chassidim, however, decided this year not to make the traditional annual trip to Uman.
Instead, the Chassidim visited the tomb of Rabbi Yisrael Oddesser, a student of Rabbi Nachman, who according to the group's tradition, was considered the spiritual descendant of the Rebbe.
Uman is irrelevant, according to the group, which quotes Rabbi Nachman as saying, “Wherever I go, I'm going to the Land of Israel.”