Isaac Emmanuilovich Babel (Russian: Исаак Эммануилович Бабель, IPA: [ˈbabʲɪlʲ]; 13 July [O.S. 1 July] 1894 – 27 January 1940) was a Russian writer, journalist, playwright, and literary translator. He is best known as the author of Red Cavalry, Story of My Dovecote and The Odessa Tales—stories from the life of Jewish gangsters from Odessa led by Benya Krik (prototype – Mishka Yaponchik). He has been acclaimed as "the greatest prose writer of Russian Jewry". Babel was arrested by the NKVD on 15 May 1939 on fabricated charges of terrorism and espionage and executed on 27 January 1940. In 1954 he was rehabilitated.