by James “JB” Bryson
If some recall, I had family here during the Memorial Day weekend, and spent a great deal of time in conversation with my daughter in law. My eldest son is in a mixed religion marriage, as he was raised in the Christian faith, and he married a lovely Jewish woman. They have elected to raise our grandchildren in the Jewish faith.
If you are a frequent visitor of PNO.com, you will detect quite easily I am not a fan at all of the Varela administration. I make that point quite clear. But after hearing the claims of my daughter in law, I spent the better part of the past two weeks delving into what she described as a very evident bias against the Jewish population in Panama. After performing my own due diligence, I concur.
To quote Donald Trump “You know it, I know it and everybody knows It!”
President Varela is 100% Anti Martinelli but what may be much more troubling than that is he also may be an Anti-Semite?!?!
Here are some undeniable facts about his relentless political persecution that may shed some light on that argument. Normally, I wouldn’t want to accuse anyone of such a heinous label you know the old saying “If the shoe fits.” I was contacted several months ago by a member of the local Jewish community and was asked to look into this situation and honestly I paid it no attention. But over the following weeks, and at the urging of my daughter in law, I began to see more headlines and was talking to others about.
This persecution which led me to really start digging into this issue.
I’ve spent dozens of hours reading, searching and inquiring and this is what I found. Take a look for yourself and come to your own
I’ve made no secrets about my feelings nor will I ever regarding any and all of the present, past or future administrations if you’ve
followed and read any of my stories. But if not I’ll make it short and sweet where I stand. I stand with the people of Panama and with
upholding the law of the land. I’m not Pro Martinelli in any way shape or form. But I can’t deny that under his rule the economy was
clicking on all cylinders, unemployment was almost non existent the people on the street were happy and doing well and there was a sense of Pride in Panama that’s not there today.
Truthfully I’m NOT a PRD supporter either (although as I’ve written before) I believe they are
on the way back and in a big way. I’m also NOT anti Panamenista at all! I’m merely ANTI Varela!! Why, because IMHO he’s done nothing of any substance to help the people of Panama. His thirst for REVENGE or payback or whatever you want to call has clearly been at the forefront of his
administration. This hubris to get even at all costs, above all else , does NOTHING to help the people of Panama, it’s National pride and more important basic services and programs that are so necessary. It’s undeniable that things here have gone backwards over he last 4 years. Now that’s not the premise of this article though. The premise is quite frankly a very real and very scary one.
Is President Juan Carlos Varela an Anti-Semite???
Anti-Semite by definition is the following:
Definition of anti-Semitic
: relating to or characterized by anti-Semitism : feeling or showing hostility toward or discrimination against Jews as a cultural, racial, or ethnic group
- … his critics charge he is anti-Semitic and anti-black, allegations that he denies.
- —James M. Perry
Anti-Semitic behaviors like other prejudices will never be eradicated here on Earth as long as there are people. But to think that the
leader of Country in this day and age would practice and target a race or group and go to the ends that we’ve seen here in Panama is certainly more than enough to be posing the question.
For those of you NOT from Panama or with little knowledge of the Panamanian Jewish Community here you should know that the Jewish
Community is very strong and a very tight knit group. Like most Jewish that I’ve ever been around they take care of each other but you
don’t get the feeling that they are against anyone or any other religious group. Panama has never had a Jewish President in the history of the Republic (I don’t think they have ever had a candidate either). Perhaps if I’m wrong someone will correct me. In general they seem to be as a group very A-Political. Meaning they aren’t PRD, CD or Panamenista’s. I think they support each of the parties depending on who they believe will be in the best interest of the country.
So why is this topic even being discussed well it’s simple….
Check out the list of the below Jewish business men and civic leaders.
All of whom have been persecuted by Varela and NONE were found guilty of anything whatsoever. It’s also important to point out that each
of these people to a man are damn near icons here in Panama and pillars of the community. The Panamanian Community first and the Jewish Community second.
1.Aharon Mizrachi – Financial Pacific. This is Ricardo Martinellis Brother in Law (If he was the only Jewish person or one of two or even
three we wouldn’t be having this conversation). What did he do???
The Varela Regime Persecuted him for having an investment account in Financial Pacific, they charged him with purchases of Facebook Shares,
Inmet Mining shares and Petaquilla Shares with privileged information.
What we would call back home in the US of A Insider Trading Gordon Gecko type stuff. The sad thing is none of those companies are
regulated in the Panama Stock Exchanged so what’s that mean no authority and certainly no jurisdiction. Over the last 4 years all
the cases have expired and a judge ruled the DA showed No Proof of any of the charges as a result all of the cases were dismissed. Varela
instructed his prosecutor to issue and arrest warrant against him and even filed warrants with Interpol as if he was a dangerous criminal.
2. Mayer Mizrachi – Criptex. This is the young Entrepreneur son of Aharon Mizrachi who was living in the Big Apple NYC working with his
team from Criptex about to take his privacy email software company public when without any warning or knowledge the Government of Panama through the Public Ministry put him on an interpol list to apprehend him claiming he sold a software to the police force during Martinelli’s
time and that the software did not work. He was traveling to Cartagena for a New Years Eve Party not realizing what was going on and got arrested by the Colombian Authorities were he spend almost 8 months in La Picota Bogota’s most Notoriously dangerous Prison and then deported to Panama. He had to face the bogus charges and 18 months later authorities said that his software was delivered and did serve its purpose and that no crime had been committed.
This poor kid’s life I can only imagine will NEVER be the same after that experience of being unlawfully imprisoned in Colombia.
3. Gabriel Btesh – This is one of Panama’s most well known and respected real estate developers. Because he is allegedly one of the
partners in the only opposition newspaper in Panama (Panama America) he has been ferociously persecuted by Varela’s Regime and the Public
Ministry has used its tabloid like newspaper of preference La Prensa as their main tool to portray Mr. Btesh as some sort of criminal because one of his companies had won a bid to manage some parking lots at Tocumen. The same contract that was later taken away as soon
as Varela got into power (and given to a Company Close to the Current Government, Very Banana Republic move ! He has also been accused by
Varela government of irregularities in an investment account in Financial Pacific and after more than 3 years of investigation and
nothing has come of it besides La Prensa blasting the accusations with nothing to backed them up. Are you starting to see a pattern
4. Henry Mizrachi – One of the Directors of the Panama Canal. According to my online research; Mr. Mizrachi comes from a well respected family
in Panama’s business sector, US educated, has been a key investor in both commercial and residential projects and the common denominator to
some of the other persecuted Jews in Panama, he is one of the shareholders of EPASA the company with owns both La Critica and the
Panama America both opposition newspapers and currently rivals of the current administrations weapon of mass destruction La Prensa. I have
to say many years back if La Prensa printed something we in the “Gringo Community” viewed it as the truth and a reliable source for
the truth the same way would credit something in the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal. Clearly that’s not the case here in Panama.
Today in the US and around the world “FAKE NEWS” has become the norm.
Guess what readers of PNO.com “FAKE NEWS” was invented here in
Below is a list of other other members of the Jewish Community in Panama who either are being or have been persecuted by the Judicial
System under Varela. Many people that I have spoken with or interviewed feel the main purpose of all this is to try and intimidate
the entire Jewish Community so that they don’t support any member of the opposition or do business in any way with opposition owned or run
companies. I for one feel that with only 11 months left before the next elections you can expect these type of attacks and persecution
from Varela’s Government and there media apparatus El Diario, LaPrensa to intensify. I think that when all of the dust settles like with all of these gentlemen nobody will be found guilty but these men and the Jewish Community will be certainly left with a giant hole
created by Juan Carlos Varela and his administration. I mean c’mon!?!? nobody can be right or wrong all the time. All of these cases and
accusations mentioned above and not one conviction what does that tell you?!
Other persecuted Jewish business men and community leaders…..
Teofilo Gateno CSS
Is it a big coincidence?? Is it sending a message for not enough support in the past?? Or is it plain and simple profiling?? What’s
the reason?? Is it one of the above or is it just the case of hatred and religious persecution by Varela??
Whatever it is it’s time that someone shines a light on these actions and the results. Will these men receive “reparations” for the prices
they and their families have paid and continue to pay? Let’s hope so. I’m a believer that Karma is a bitch, that what goes around
comes around and that no good deed goes unpunished. I’m hopeful that by writing this piece it will stimulate the attention that this topic
deserves and that it is given the proper attention it deserves!
Hasta la proxima.