Brazil – Antisemitic statement made by Senator Magno Malta

Magno Malta | Photo: Senado Agency

Rio de JaneiroThe Brazil-Israel Institute (IBI) repudiated on Thursday (22), the speech made by Senator Magno Malta (PL-ES) on Wednesday (21), during the hearing of lawyer Cristiano Zanin in the Federal Senate, in which he made an antisemitic statement.

In his speech, quoting Senator Davi Alcolumbre (União Brasil), who is Jewish, Malta said: “Davi wasn’t here, I think he was even a councilman, or he was just a salesman, because he is Jewish, he lives up and down,” he said.

The entity cites that the senator’s speech “clearly illustrates a phenomenon that is repeated in a certain segment of the Brazilian extreme right.

“Magno Malta, who has always made a point of publicly placing himself as an admirer of Israel, makes prejudice clear by resorting to an idea that associates and generalizes the Jewish people to the accumulation of wealth. A classic example showing how an imaginary philo-Semitism can also be associated with the most traditional anti-Semitism,” explained journalist Morris Kachani, executive director of IBI.

Still according to Kachani, “the Jewish community is diverse, both in Brazil and around the world. The idea of treating people from an entire people as a monolithic block is, in itself, harmful. It dehumanizes, it takes away the uniqueness of each individual. Moreover, false association of Jews with power is what led to historical persecutions, such as in Germany in the 1930s and the Russian Pogroms.

On Wednesday night, the full Senate approved Cristiano Zanin’s name for a vacancy as a Supreme Court justice. The score was 58 votes in favor and 18 against. The decision came after the lawyer was tried out for almost eight hours in the Constitution and Justice Commission (CCJ). He will occupy Ricardo Lewandowski’s vacancy.

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