Rare Jabotinsky Writings Now Published In Israel, Russia
By Israel News Agency 18/4/07
Apr 19, 2007, 09:11

Vladimir Jabotinsky was a prominent public figure and writer, founder of the Revisionist movement in Zionism and the beacon of Israel’s national camp. Born in Odessa, Russia in 1880, he wrote mostly in Russian, and up to 1917 he authored over a thousand articles, essays, and short stories.

"So far the modern reader has only had access to no more than 10 to 15 per cent of these writings, with the rest – published in the periodicals of his day - gathering dust in archives," said Michael Cherney (Mikhail Chernoy), international industrialist and philanthropist. "This publication is the first attempt to bring together all Jabotinsky’s Russian-language writings. Ninety percent of the Jabotinsky writings that make up the collection have not been reprinted since the first publication."

In March 2007, the first volume came out. The project will be completed in 2010, the 130th anniversary of Jabotinsky’s birth and at the same time the 70th anniversary of his death.

The materials come from various archives – the Russian State Library in Moscow, Jabotinsky Institute in Israel, National Library of Jewish University in Jerusalem, and private collections.

Most of the philosophy and teachings of Ze'ev Jabotinsky were collected in 18 volumes that were first published some 50 years ago by his son, Eri Jabotinsky.

At the age of 18, Jabotinsky left Russia for Italy and Switzerland to study law, and served as a correspondent for several well-known Russia newspapers. His reports and articles were widely read and soon became recognized as one of the brilliant exponents of Russian journalism. All his reports and articles were signed with his literary pseudonym "Altalena".

The pogrom against the Jews of Kishinev in 1903, spurred Jabotinsky to undertake Zionist activity. He organized self-defense units and fought for Jewish minority rights in Russia. Jabotinsky was elected as a delegate to the 6th Zionist Congress, the last in which Theodore Herzl participated. During this period, Jabotinsky was active in spreading the Hebrew language and culture throughout Russia, and the establishment of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

Following the outbreak of World War I in 1914, he left for the front as a newspaper correspondent. While in Alexandria he met Joseph Trumpeldor; and from then onward, worked for the establishment of the Jewish Legion. Jabotinsky was not interested in the creation of an auxiliary unit; and upon reaching London, took energetic steps until the final confirmation was received in August 1917 of the creation of the first Jewish Legion. Jabotinsky also served as a Lieutenant and participated in the assault of the Jordan River crossings and the conquest of E-salt in the campaign to free Eretz Israel (Palestine) from Turkish rule. During Passover, 1920, Jabotinsky stood at the head of the Hagana in Jerusalem against Arab riots and was condemned by the British Mandatory Government to 15 years hard labor. Following the public outcry against the verdict, he received amnesty and was released from Acre prison.

From 1921 onwards, Jabotinsky was a member of the Zionist Executive and one of the founders of "Keren Hayesod". After a series of policy disagreement on the direction of the Zionist Movement, he seceded and in 1925, established the Union of Zionists-Revisionists (Hatzohar) which called for the immediate establishment of a Jewish State.

In 1923, the youth movement Betar (Brith Joseph Trumpeldor) was created. The new youth movement aimed at educating its members with a military and nationalistic spirit and Jabotinsky stood at its head. During the years 1928-1929, he resided in Palestine and edited the Hebrew daily "Doar Hayom" while at the same time undertaking increased political activity. In 1929, he left the country on a lecture tour after which the British administration denied him re-entry into the country. From then onwards he lived in the Diaspora until his death.

In 1935, after the Zionist Executive rejected his political program and refused to clearly define that "the aim of Zionism was the establishment of a Jewish state"; Jabotinsky decided to resign from the Zionist Movement and founded the New Zionist Organization (N.Z.O) which conducted independent political activity for free immigration and the establishment of a Jewish State.

In 1937, the Irgun Tzvai Leumi (I.Z.L) became the military arm of the Jabotinsky movement and he became its commander. The three bodies headed by Jabotinsky, The New Zionist Organization (N.Z.O), the Betar youth movement and the Irgun Tzvai Leumi (I.Z.L) were three extensions of the same movement. The New Zionist Organization was the political arm which maintained contacts with governments and other political factors; Betar educated the youth of the Diaspora for the liberation and building of Eretz Israel; and the Irgun Tzvai Leumi (I.Z.L) was the military arm which fought against the enemies of the Zionist enterprise. These bodies cooperated in the organization of Af Al Pi illegal immigration. Within this framework, over 40 ships sailed from European ports bringing to Eretz Israel tens of thousands of illegal immigrants.

Throughout this period of intense political activity, Jabotinsky continued to write poetry, novels, short stories and articles on politics, social and economic problems. From among his literary creations, The Jewish Legion, Prelude to Delilah (Samson) and The Five, served as an inspiration for Jews of the Diaspora.

Jabotinsky was fluent in many languages and translated into Hebrew some of the best known classics of world literature.

During 1939-1940, Jabotinsky was active in Britain and the United States in the hope of establishing a Jewish army to fight side by side with the Allies against Nazi Germany.

On August 4, 1940 while visiting the Betar camp in New York, he suffered a massive heart-attack. In his will he requested that his remains may only be interred in Eretz Israel at the express order of the Hebrew Government of the Jewish State that shall arise. His will was fulfilled by Levi Eshkol, Israel's third Prime Minister. In 1964, Jabotinsky's remains and those of his wife Jeanne were reinterred on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem, Israel.

The name of Jabotinsky is inscribed in the pages of the history of the Jewish people as a distinguished political leader, journalist and philosopher; a guide and inspiration who consistently fought for the return of the Jewish people and the establishment of the State of Israel.

“Today, in view of the war on Islamic terrorism that the Western civilization and its front-line state Israel are forced to wage, Jabotinsky’s articles sound vital once again,” said Cherney (Mikhail Chernoy). Mr. Cherney has lived in Israel since 1994 and is respected for his aid to Israel terror victims and the sponsorship of informational projects related to the war on terror.

“I’m pleased,” says Cherney, “to be able to help in realizing this project. Jabotinsky’s works, unknown and not reprinted for 60 years, inspire today’s Zionists and all those fighting for Biblical civilization values. Their spirit is just what we need for victory.”

Following his repatriation to Israel, Michael Cherney (Mikhail Chernoy) has maintained business interests in Russia and post-Soviet states, while developing new business contacts between Russia, Europe, Israel, and the US. In Israel, Michael Cherney spends much effort on charity and humanitarian projects that reinforce cooperation between Israel and Russia in fighting terrorism.

Michael Cherney (Mikhail Chernoy) established a Website for his Foundation on June 1, 2001, the night of the terrorist bombing outside the Dolphinarium Disco in Tel Aviv. When Michael Cherney learned the number of victims - 21 dead and over 150 wounded - he realized that rendering assistance required a systematic organized effort.

Prior to 2001, Cherney was engaged in charity work in Russia, Ukraine, Central Asia, Bulgaria, the US - wherever he did business. He made valuable contributions into Jewish philanthropy in Russia. Following the Dolphinarium terrorist tragedy, the Cherney Fund became the helping hand for all its victims. In a misfortune like this, emigres from the former Soviet countries are even worse off than those born in Israel: they don't have a support system or savings.

The Cherney Fund, therefore, renders help mostly to the new arrivals, victims of catastrophes and terrorist acts that continue to bleed Israel, as well as to the low-income victims of terror in other countries. Another equally important task assumed by the Cherney Foundation is the media effort in war on terror. Shortly after the Dolphinarium attack, the Foundation published a book called Dolphinarium: Terror Targets the Young.

The Michael Cherney Foundation has established grants for students from the former Soviet Union in all major Israel universities with an annual endowment of 1 million shekels.

Mr. Cherney (Mikhail Chernoy) and his family live in a suburb of Tel Aviv.

Source: Ocnus.net 2007