She grew up in a “difficult home,” as she put it. Her folks met as artwork scholars in Odessa, Ukraine. When Kravchenko used to be 3 and her sister 5, they misplaced each their grandfather and father to homicide in a couple of quick months. Their grandfather, a high-ranking commander within the Soviet army, used to be temperamental and belligerent and perhaps mentally sick, Kravchenko mentioned. He used to be killed when an assailant strangled him and torched his area. Ola’s mom, Tania, used to be suspected within the arson and spent nearly a 12 months in Soviet detention. (According to Tania, his frame used to be exhumed, and new proof cleared her of the homicide.) Shortly after, Ola’s father’s frame used to be discovered, putting from a tree in a woodland. He have been a penniless artist in St. Petersburg, “extraordinarily talented” and “hypersensitive,” consistent with Tania. No one is aware of how he died, despite the fact that buddies of his later advised her that they’d observed two males chasing him within the woods. Ola’s circle of relatives moved in with Tania’s mom. Four years later, they immigrated to Israel, settling in Katzrin.
Kravchenko discovered it arduous to slot in. She labored on losing her accessory and have shyed away from the youngsters of different Russian or Ukrainian immigrants, who make up a couple of 3rd of Katzrin’s inhabitants. She incessantly wandered out of sophistication, disappearing into nature. The college time and again referred to as her mom to come back to find her. She distinctly remembers the primary time she heard voices. She used to be 17 and using house along with her mom. “She started saying all these unpleasant things about me: that she didn’t want to drive me home, that she was tired of taking care of me, that I was always nagging.” But when Kravchenko appeared over at her mom, “her mouth wasn’t moving.” Soon the voices turned into a lot of and common, disguised because the voices of other folks Kravchenko knew smartly. “They were always critical of me, always nasty,” she mentioned. “There was no telling them apart from real voices.”
Around the similar time, Kravchenko’s mom instructed she take a look at meditation, and she or he began attending categories led by way of a charismatic Chilean-born guru named David Har-Zion. Kravchenko fell underneath his spell. After a number of months, she moved in with a bunch of his fans. She slept on a yoga mat with dozens of other folks in a big corridor. Members had been forbidden to shape relationships with the out of doors international and had been required to give up their private possessions to the gang. For 3 years, she lived in “virtual enslavement,” she mentioned. Har-Zion later fled the rustic, and Kravchenko discovered herself unexpectedly unmoored and by myself. “I had no life skills whatsoever,” she mentioned.
When she used to be 20, she met Habany at the streets of Tel Aviv. She used to be elevating donations for Har-Zion’s staff at a neighborhood marketplace, and he helped his father run a clothes stall there. They started to take lengthy walks at the seashore in combination, smoking marijuana and speaking about their pasts. He used to be 19, bookish and opinionated, and he inspired her along with his wisdom of Hebrew literature. He confided in her that at 17 he used to be dedicated at a psychiatric establishment out of doors Tel Aviv. (The courtroom later indicated that this used to be for habits dysfunction.) Rather than alarm her, this “only pulled me closer,” she advised me. Within six months, she moved in with him. “I was totally his,” she mentioned.
There have been caution indicators, however Kravchenko selected to forget about them. “The sex was violent, but I was drawn to it.” By 2005, Kravchenko felt increasingly more remoted. Returning house from paintings one night time, she began speaking with a bunch of younger individuals who frequented a public sq.. They presented her vodka. The subsequent factor she remembers, she awoke bare in her rental, her frame aching, with Habany screaming at her: “What is this? What did you do?” Kravchenko doesn’t know the one who raped her or take into account a lot about that night time — “I have flashes of the guy,” she advised me — but if Habany noticed her, he kicked her within the head and abdomen, dragged her into the tub and urinated on her. Habany later advised investigators that he “peed on her,” as a result of he “felt like it.” An investigator drilled into this: “Your partner, your lover … was raped according to you by another man, and you peed on her?” Habany advised him, “It’s my personal business — not yours.”
After that evening, Kravchenko mentioned, Habany turned into obsessed along with her whereabouts. He didn’t permit her to socialise or cross out with out him to anywhere aside from paintings. “I didn’t realize that I was being abused,” she advised me. “I still wanted to marry him, have children with him.” In 2006, they ran out of cash to pay hire and needed to transfer in with Kravchenko’s mom, in Katzrin. Tania used to be taken with how Habany handled Kravchenko and attempted to warn her daughter. But by way of then, Kravchenko had misplaced her sense of self. In a sketchbook from that point, she drew a girl warrior with a sword getting into her personal portions. “I even bought myself a dog collar,” she mentioned.