A Brazilian organisation at the service of “Jewish descendants” who are not Jewish (by any type of Judaism, however liberal it may be) and who have been working exclusively with the Jewish Community of Lisbon, to obtain certificates of Sephardism, has launched a video on YouTube called “Antisemitism in Portugal in 2022 against the people who are descended from Sephardic Jews”.
This video criticises the new regulations of the Portuguese nationality law, which establishes requirements that Sephardic Jews find hard to fulfil. “Portugal says no to the new regulation”, “Portugal says no to antisemitism”, Portugal says no to the new form of antisemitism against descendants of Sephardic Jews in 2022 in Portugal”.
On June 29, on the subject of this video, the Jewish Community of Lisbon issued a statement stating that “the specificities of the legislative process cannot be confused with unfounded accusations of antisemitism”, given that this “is far too serious a matter to be trivialised and used without grounds”.
The words Oporto and the Jewish Community of Oporto do not appear in the communiqué of the Jewish Community of Lisbon. However, pursuing interests alien to good journalism, the Lusa news agency released a news story across the country with the following title:
“Jewish Community of Lisbon says accusations of “antisemitism” and “terrorism” by the Jewish Community of Oporto are “counterproductive”
In addition the news continues heatedly:
"The Jewish Community of Lisbon (CIL) refutes the accusations of antisemitism made by the Jewish Community of Oporto (CIP) against the Portuguese State in the opinion sent to the Assembly of the Republic on the proposals to amend the Nationality Law.
CIL stresses that “antisemitism is too serious an issue to be trivialized”.
For CIL, these accusations are “counterproductive and meaningless”, adding that “they are not acceptable in the current framework of legislative discussion, which must be done with elevation and respect” and whose discussion the Lisbon body believes deserves a “reinforced scrutiny”.
Regarding the evolution of the legislative process, CIL reiterates that the procedures that follow in the reformulation of the decree-law “cannot, and should not, be confused with persecution, prejudice, hostility or discrimination towards Jews specifically”.
The Lisbon Community, which in 2020 was “frightened” about “the social environment similar to that of the Dreyfus case”, a case of “pure religious antisemitism” and a “reliving of the ‘Invasion of the Jews’’" (a 1924 anti-Semitic book), could not have a radically different opinion in 2022, in particular after the terrorist torrent against the strongest community in Portugal, mounted by agents of the State and based on anonymous complaints, which included allegations of corruption in the Patrick Drahi case correctly certified by the Lisbon community seven years ago.
Certainly the journalist knew that, in 2020, at a SEDES congress, the most distinguished member and former re-president of the Jewish community in Lisbon even stated that the debate on the nationality law had descended so low that it was a case of “pure religious anti-Semitism” reminiscent of “the 'Invasion of the Jews' '” (an anti-Semitic book from 1924). He later wrote in a book that Jews were even compared to viruses because they multiplied so much.
In the midst of so much manipulation, the video of the organization from Brazil entitled “Antisemitism in Portugal in 2022 against the people who are descended from Sephardic Jews” was totally forgotten.
The Jewish Community of Oporto was not consulted by the author of the news.
On 30th June, when Lusa's fake news had already been disseminated in Portugal, the Jewish Community of Oporto itself issued a statement, which it sent to that news agency.
The same Lusa that manipulated the CIL communiqué to forcefully say that this entity rejected the accusations of antisemitism by the Jewish community of Oporto, also manipulated the communiqué of the Jewish Community of Oporto by not conveying its key ideas, namely the following:
1) In 2020, the honourable President of CIL wrote to CIP/CJP about a "social environment similar to the Dreyfus case" in Portugal, and a responsible for the Sephardic certification department of CIL for years confessed to being "very scared" by what was happening and with the government's lack of response to the Portuguese Jewish communities.
2) In 2022, the Government published a new nationality regulation at a time when there was considerable suspicion against the strongest Jewish community in Portugal, artificially created by State agents who wanted to pass the law without facing resistance from personalities committed to reconnecting Portugal with the diaspora of Sephardic origin.
3) The Jewish Community of Oporto is the strongest Portuguese Jewish community at every level (religious, cultural, philanthropic, educational and organisational) and comprises hundreds of families expelled from Arab countries and a large number of Shoah victims. It has a Holocaust Museum, gives courses to teachers and every year hosts 40 thousand school children, a global endeavour that is unique in Europe as regards the fight against antisemitism.
COMMUNIQUÉ IN FULL:
- ON ANTISEMITISM
1) The fear of anti-Semitism in Portugal was revealed in 2020 by the President of the Jewish community of Lisbon, who wrote to a director of CIP/CJP about a “social environment similar to the Dreyfus case". Also a responsible for the Sephardic certification department of CIL for years confessed she was “very frightened” with what was happening and with the lack of Government response to the Portuguese Jewish communities. All the above is backed up by documents.
2) Unlike many dead communities in Europe, the Jewish Community of Oporto comprises hundreds of families expelled from Arab countries and a large number of Shoah victims. It has a Holocaust Museum, gives courses to teachers and every year hosts 40 thousand school children, a global endeavour that is unique in Europe as regards the fight against antisemitism.
3) The Jewish Community of Oporto is the strongest Portuguese Jewish community at every level: religious, cultural, philanthropic, educational and organisational.
4) The Jewish Community of Oporto has never commented the new nationality regulation, it is no longer interested in discussing any alterations to the law and has long since suspended the certifications that it carried out. The reason for this was the antisemitic campaign it suffered, which is already musealised (to be seen by schoolchildren and tourists). In the future, and when allowed by law, this antisemitism will be comprehensively documented with facts, documents, photographs and protagonists.
- ON THE SOVEREIGN STATE
5) The Portuguese State has the power to make any legislative alterations it deems convenient at any time. All the Jewish Community of Oporto ever did was make suggestions. This occurred both in 2020 and in 2021, when it suggested to the Justice Ministry that the regulation then being finetuned should include a more current connection to Portugal on the part of the applicants and that the certification process should occur on a platform accessible in real time by the Central Registry Offices who could participate in the decision-making process. The State would have the last word.
6) In 2022, the government published a new nationality regulation at a time when there was rampant suspicion, artificially created against the strongest Jewish community in Portugal, by agents of the State who wished the act to be approved without having to encounter the resistance of people engaged in the attempt to reconnect Portugal to its diaspora of Sephardic origin.
- FINALLY THE VIDEO
7) The video mentioned in the CIL communiqué (made by alleged “descendants” of Jews who were never, nor could they ever be, certified by CIP/CJP) wrongly places the emphasis on the word ‘antisemitism’. This word is used literally in vain by those who comment legal alterations lawfully made by a legal state and which, strictly speaking, as regards acquiring Portuguese nationality, does not benefit from the legal regime pertaining to Jews of Sephardic origin, but rather from another specific law for descendants of Portuguese nationals in general.