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Did rhetoric spur Chanukah vandalism?

A public menorah and a “Happy Chanukah” banner were vandalized in a Ukrainian city after politicians complained about the menorah.

The vandalism took place Dec. 8, three days after several local politicians in Cherkassy complained in a local newspaper about the placement of the menorah near a monument to Bogdan Khmelnitsky, a Ukrainian national hero who led a revolt against Polish landlords in the mid-1600s that led to large-scale massacres of Jews.

Aleksandr Tuz, a local Cossack leader and a member of President Victor Yuschenko’s Our Ukraine party, was quoted in the article as saying, “Jews are uninvited guests both in our city and in Ukraine, and ought to act in a way so that they are not seen or heard.”

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