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December 11, 2016 / 11 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Brazil’

First Ever Passover Haggadah Written by Anousim for Anousim Published in Brazil

Thursday, March 31st, 2016

(Sunday, March 27, 2016) – For the first time ever, Anousim, the descendants of forcibly-converted Spanish and Portuguese Jewish communities, have published their own Passover Hagada. The Brazilian community of descendants of Spanish and Portuguese Jews published the first ever Passover Hagada titled A Hagadá de Pêssach do Sertão for other Anousim in Hebrew, Portuguese and Portuguese transliteration.

“A self-aware, self-reliant and active community is vitally important for Jewish continuity,” said Ilana Kohler, editor of the Hagada. “As the descendants of Spanish and Portuguese Jews in Brazil are struggling to establish their own communities and live an open and full Jewish life, not forgetting their origins, this Hagada is an important step towards not depending on other publications most of which do not follow the traditions of our ancestors.”

“The illustrations also provide a taste of our country, with traditional Brazilian northeast relief painting, typical for the area of Sertão, a region of Northeast Brazil, where many Anousim settled.”

The Hagada includes many traditional Passover songs in Ladino, and follows the tradition of the Portuguese Amsterdam Hagadot, and was edited and produced by members of the Recife Sephardic Association. Recife is famous for having the first synagogue of the Americas and home to many descendants of Spanish and Portuguese Jews forced to convert to Catholicism during the Inquisition. The Hagada is illustrated with traditional Brazilian relief printing art.

Ashley Perry (Perez), President of Reconectar, an organization whose goal is to reconnect the Anousim with the Jewish world, and assisted with the project, also spoke about the significance of the Hagada.

“This Hagada is more than just a book that will be used by many Anousim on Pesach,” Perry said. “It is also representative of a massive awakening and self-sufficiency among Anousim who are keen to return to the traditions of their ancestors.”

“The traditions of their ancestors are alive and well in the Spanish and Portuguese Jewish tradition and it is very exciting for both our communities to reconnect with their roots. The Twenty-First Century is providing both the millions of Anousim and the Jewish world with an unprecedented opportunity to reconnect in a way impossible in previous generations and we dare not miss this opportunity. This is what we are trying to achieve at Reconectar and this Hagada is a testament to the exciting possibilities that lie ahead.”

Jewish Press Staff

Dani Dayan to be Israeli Consul General in New York, Not Ambassador to Brazil

Monday, March 28th, 2016

Former Yesha Council head Dani Dayan is being promoted after months of resistance from the government of Brazil, which has avoided accepting his appointment as Israel’s new ambassador.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Monday instead that he has appointed Dayan, 59, as Israel’s new Consul General in New York – an appointment that Dayan preferred as first choice.

Dayan’s knowledge of Spanish will be extremely helpful in his new position; New York is home to a huge Spanish-speaking population. Born in Argentina, he is a businessman with an MBA in finance.

Dayan will replace Ido Aharoni, a long-time Foreign Ministry official, this summer. Dayan was called the settlers’ “foreign minister” for his ability to present the views of Jewish residents living in Judea and Samaria to those with no knowledge of the area. He lives in Ma’ale Shomron, a community about nine miles from Kfar Saba.

“Those who don’t want me in Brazilia, will get me in the capital of the world and to me that is a victory,” Dayan said on Monday at the Ynet and Yedioth Ahronoth anti-BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) conference.

Last August, Brazil’s President Dilma Roussett had passed a message to Israel that she was uncomfortable with Dayan’s appointment due to his ties with the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria. Roussett was being pressured by the BDS movement via 40 prominent organizations in Brazil, who signed a petition calling on her to decline the appointment. The petition – and protests joined by several Brazilian lawmakers – claimed Dayan’s appointment as ambassador was a violation of international legitimacy and a challenge to the sovereignty of Brazil.

Israel has worked hard to improve and maintain good relations with Brazil. Since the country is the largest in South America, it was important to find a diplomatic solution to the dilemma, but not to cave to the BDS pressure while preserving Dayan’s status.

“I believe I can revolutionize Israeli public relations in the US, whose beating heart is in New York,” Dayan said.

Hana Levi Julian

Israeli Government Pledges To Invest Over One Million Shekels in Encouraging Brazilian Aliyah

Thursday, February 25th, 2016

By Alexander J. Apfel/TPS

The Israeli government has committed to investing more than NIS 1 million in boosting efforts to encourage Jews from Brazil to move to Israel. Only 191 Brazilian Jews moved to Israel last year while 750 of them are expected to arrive by the end of 2016. Brazilian Olim form the seventh largest group of immigrants to Israel.

The Knesset Committee for Aliyah and Absorption announced on Monday evening, February 22 that NIS 1,180,000 will be spent on a variety of programs and initiatives aimed at addressing common problems that Brazilians face after having immigrated to Israel.

The money will also go towards increasing the number of Jewish Agency representatives in Brazil to encourage aliyah, provide preparatory aliyah seminars, and to finding full-time employment for new immigrants prior to their move to Israel.

Additional emphasis will also be placed on preparing prospective students for the psychometric exams required by universities and on increasing the number of Hebrew courses in Brazil.

Committee Chairman and Likud MK Avraham Naguisa called for the improvement of the absorption of Brazilian Jews by increasing the number of Portuguese speakers available to guide them and assist them once they move to Israel.

Gladys Berezowsky, manager of the Beit Brasil [Brazil House] organization, highlighted the lack of availability of letters translated to Portuguese from the absorption centers. Berezowsky said that dozens of applications are received daily from people who are interested in making aliyah of whom the vast majority only speak Portuguese.

Bruna Drazin, who moved to Israel in 2011 from northern Brazil, told Tazpit Press Service (TPS) that while she already spoke English, many Brazilians struggle upon their arrival in Israel due to the language barrier.

“Everything can be hard. Almost all the websites you have are in English and Hebrew and sometimes Spanish, but never Portuguese. Some people think that Spanish is the same, but it really is not. There are many people from Brazil who cannot even read Spanish,” Drazin said.

“It can really be a problem when you come here because you do not have any support here in Portuguese,” she added.

Zionist Federation representative Oded Foyer said that around fifteen Hebrew language classes will be opened while more teachers will be trained.

“Hebrew was a problem for me when I came to Israel. I never thought about creating more Hebrew language classes in Brazil, but it could be a good idea. You leave your profession when you move here and you don’t have the language at all,” Drazin told TPS.

Foyer said that the efforts to encourage aliyah will not be restricted to Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, but will be made in rural areas as well.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Labeling People More Dangerous Than Labeling Products, Says Former Yesha Head

Sunday, December 27th, 2015

By Alexander J. Apfel/TPS

The Brazilian government has temporarily stonewalled Israel’s nomination of former Head of the Judea and Samaria Council, Danny Dayan for the position of Israeli ambassador to the Brazil.

The political dispute had already been underway for several weeks but drew greater attention as Brazilian politicians began fiercely voicing their objection. Member of the Brazilian parliament, Carlos Morran, publicly denounced the move saying that to accept Dayan’s nomination would be akin to accepting a commander of a concentration camp.

“Israel nominated as ambassador to Brazil the leader of the settler movement. This is the same kind of thing as if Germany were to send an ambassador to Brazil who was a commander of a concentration camp,” Morran said.

The political debacle was largely kept under wraps until Dayan took the matter to the press in order to clarify that the issue had arisen not as a unilateral step undertaken by the Brazilian government, but as the result of an assault launched by the BDS.

“There is a slight misconception here. People think that it is a unilateral step taken by the Brazilian president. But this is a classic BDS move and Saeb Barakat is seeking to thwart my nomination,” Dayan said.

Adding that he did not take the rejection as a personal affront, Dayan stated that he was concerned for the precedent it set in relation to future potential nominees who live in Judea and Samaria communities.

“I am afraid that the question now is whether the next resident of the communities who is thought to be an appropriate candidate for a diplomatic position will be eligible to stand or if we will now agree to the idea that 700,000 Israelis will automatically be disqualified.”

Dayan further compared the rejection to the EU’s recent decision to label Israeli products which originate from Judea and Samaria. “We have to decide what to do. I believe that just as Israel responded angrily to the labelling of products, we also have to respond to the labelling people because labelling people is even more dangerous than products,” Dayan warned.

In response to the rejection, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be meeting with Foreign Minister Director-General, Dore Gold to discuss the most appropriate course of action.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Brazil May be Boycotting Settler as an Ambassador

Sunday, December 6th, 2015

Fears are growing in the Netanyahu administration that Brazil may torpedo the appointment of Dani Dayan, a leader in Judea and Samaria, as ambassador.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu nominated Dayan, a native of Argentine, to the post two months ago and a formal request was sent to Brazil to accept the appointment.

Brazil has taken no action, and the Foreign Ministry now is concerned that the delay will be permanent.

Brazil’s problem with Dayan is that he once was the chairman of the Council of Jewish Communities of Judea and Samaria and that he lives in Maaleh Shomron, part of the Karnei-Ginot Shomron complex in western Samaria.

Other countries, including the United States, have accepted Israeli ambassadors who lived in Judea and Samaria, even high-profile politicians such as Avigdor Lieberman. The difference between him and Dayan is that the latter was an activist for the settler movement. He often was considered the “Foreign Minister of Judea and Samaria.”

A government source told The JewishPress.com Sunday morning that he is optimistic that Brazil eventually will accept Dayan as ambassador, but so far, it is no go.

Netanyahu’s nomination of Dayan ran into a brick wall with the pro-Palestinian Authority Brazilian government from day one, which was in September.

Brazil’s president Dilma Rousseff immediately and quietly conveyed messages to the Foreign Ministry that it is was not happy about accepting Dayan. Several Brazilian legislators joined more than 40 groups to petition Rousseff to reject Dayan.

If Brazil continues to freeze the appointment simply by not acting on it, it will put Prime Minister Netanyahu in a bind. If he makes it a public issue, relations would be hampered. The cost is high because Israel wants to improve trade with Brazil.

If he concedes, he will run into to trouble with Likud hawks and the Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party, headed by Naftali Bennett.

The only diplomatic way for Netanyahu not to hang his head in shame and to accept Brazil’s opposition, if it continues, is to name Dayan ambassador to another country. but Brazil would have set a precedent that would shrink the number of countries that would accept a “settler” as ambassador.

The offices of the Foreign Minister and Prime Minister refused to comment Sunday to Army Radio, which first published Brazil’s continuing delay in approving Dayan as ambassador.

Dayan said:

I suggest you contact the Foreign Ministry. I do not know about that.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Pro-Israel Legislators in Jerusalem to ‘Stand with Israel’

Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

Twenty-two parliamentarians from 18 countries around the world are in Jerusalem for the annual Israel Allies Foundation conference in Jerusalem and will focus on attacking the Boycott Israel (BDS) movement.

They also will discuss the threat of a nuclear Iran on Israel and the Western world, and Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel.

The three-day conference starts on Tuesday and is sponsored by the World Jewish Congress (WJC) and the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ). Represented countries are Britain, Italy, Slovakia, Holland, Greece, Hungary, Czech Republic, Greece, Finland, Canada, South Africa, Uganda, Guatemala, Uruguay, Dominican Republic, Brazil, Chile and Paraguay.

President Reuven Rivlin, several Knesset Members and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat will address the visitors on Tuesday.

They will tour Judea and Samaria on Wednesday, including the Rami Levi supermarket between Jerusalem and the communities of Beit El and Ofra. Arabs who work with Jews in the market will speak with the delegation.

The group also will visit Bat Galim Shaer, the mother of one of the boys kidnapped and murdered by Hamas last summer.

On Thursday, the parliamentarians will draft and sign a resolution declaring their support for Israel and vowing to take a stance against racist, anti-Israel movements such as BDS.

Jewish Press Staff

Dani Dayan Appointed Israel Ambassador to Brazil

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

Israeli business owner and activist Dani Dayan has been appointed by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to become Israel’s Ambassador to Brazil.

Dayan, 59, was born in Argentina, has one child and holds a master’s degree in finance. He served as chairman of the Yesha Council from 2007-2013 and is engaged in public diplomacy in Israel and abroad on a daily basis.

Dayan was also one of the founders and owners of Elad Systems and served as chairman of its Board of Directors.

“I acceded to the Prime Minister’s challenge to deepen and improve relations between Israel and Brazil,” Dayan said in a statement to media. “I promised the Prime Minister that I would spare no effort or creativity in fulfilling the strategic task he has assigned me. Even though I did not commit that we would win a gold medal in next year’s Rio Olympics, we all hope that it will happen.”

On a more strategic note, Netanyahu pointed out: “Latin America is one of the main objectives of the State of Israel in the context of its efforts to develop markets that will contribute to increasing economic growth. I am confident that Dani Dayan will bring to the post his considerable experience and will deepen relations between Israel and Brazil.”

Brazil is the largest country in Latin America with a population of some 200 million people; it is the seventh largest economy in the world.

Israel has set as a goal the development of commercial links with international markets in South America, especially Brazil.

The country also has a population of over 40 million pro-Israel Christians, which will become a potential new tourism market as well.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/dani-dayan-appointed-israel-ambassador-to-brazil/2015/08/05/

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