Our colleague Meylakh Sheykhet in Lvov responds strongly to the article, below, which I posted yesterday.
        The article shows that the authorities in Ukraine do not care about preserving the fate of ethnic groups.  The cross in Uman was erected especially to hurt Jews, since the place was chosen exactly next to the bank of the lake where Jews yearly performed the tashlich service on Rosh Hashana. 
         It is forbidden to Jews to pray next to a cross.  So the guilt must be blamed on the Christians who erected it.  It is a vicious act of anti-semitism by the Russian Orthodox Church which until today continuously accuses Jews of put the blood of Christians into matzas.  We have the same terrible situation in Sambir, a city in the Lvov oblast, where Christians erected crosses atop the Jewish cemetery just to hurt Jews who wanted to reconstitute the land of the cemetery after it was desecrated for years by the Nazis and communists. 
        None of the Jewish organizations who officially monitor anti-semitism and provide reports put these examples as acts of anti-semitism in their reports.
        Uman is one of the most corrupted places in Ukraine and this is the city hall first hand {the hand of city hall? - G.R.}  The city hall does not respect the Jewish gravesite and permitted construction atop the grave.  For 10-plus years UCSJ in Ukraine fights in courts against the city hall to respect the Jewish gravesite.  No Ukrainian Jewish leader stood with UCSJ in this struggle. 
        The act depicted in this news article is purely a response to anti-semitism.  If there would be solidarity among Jewish leaders the cross should have been removed straight after it was erected.  Seeing no other way to express protest, the young, courageous Jewish man decided to act in this way. 
        He did not do it in a legal way, but to whom could he turn to get support?  There was nobody around to respond to Jewish claims.  It is the fault of the Jewish community for not properly monitoring the situation and providing solidarity to resolve the issue peacefully.

Israeli man arrested in Ukraine for desecrating cross

January 4, 2017 

(JTA) — Police in the city of Uman in Ukraine arrested an Israeli man they suspect of defacing a large crucifix as payback for the desecration of a synagogue last month.

The suspect, Netanel Shimon, on Dec. 31 is said to have dismantled the Jesus icon from a crucifix that locals set up in 2013 near the bank of a lake where many Jews go to perform tashlich – a ritual associated with Rosh Hashanah, the holiday when thousands of Jews descend on Uman — the newspaper Gazeta reported Tuesday.

Security footage showed four males wearing traditional haredi Orthodox garb trying unsuccessfully to bring down the entire crucifix. They leave and another man, wearing a mask, is seen tearing the icon from the cross.

Shimon, who is in his 20s, has denied any wrongdoing and complained in letters published by the news website Behadrei Haredim that authorities are denying him access to legal representation and medicines for his diabetes.

Uman is a major pilgrimage site for followers of Rabbi Nachman, an 18th century luminary whose gravesite is the focal point of an annual Rosh Hashanah celebration. Some 25,000 Jews arrive there on the holiday each year.

The same cross was defaced with graffiti in 2013.

In recent years, Uman has seen several far-right rallies against the presence of Jews there. Street brawls between visitors and locals are not uncommon.

Last month, a synagogue in Uman was sprayed with red paint and desecrated with a pig’s head with a swastika carved into its forehead.

The synagogue is part of the Ohel complex, built near the gravesite of Rabbi Nachman.