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Eureka: 10 mistakes in "moi Naim, 24 ans, futur rabbin d'Algerie"
by Joseph Gatt
2018-04-06 07:25:29
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Eureka: 10 mistakes in “moi Naim, 24 ans, futur rabbin d'Algérie” 

The article was featured in newspaper El Watan and was passed around as the emotional narrative of a Jewish Algerian kid who lives in Algeria while hiding his identity. I didn't read the article when it first came out because I sensed it was fake. I read it recently, and here are ten obvious mistakes that will make you laugh.

  1. Is his mother his father's sister?

wat01_400It's either that or...his parents were married in 1962, he was born in 1988, so they were pretty old when he was born. In the article Naim says “in 1963 my parents wanted to make Alyah to Israel, but my grandfather convinced them not to.” Now technically because the kid has a father and a mother, there should be two seperate stories as to why his parents remained in Algeria. But Naim simplified the story to the fact that his grandfather convinced his parents not to move to Israel. This also assumes a hierarchical relationship between parents and children which may exist in Islam, but is not really the case in Judaism.

  1. His father sure lacks ambition

Naim's father is said to be a simple public servant 'who was “bared from higher positions when they found out he was Jewish.” Public servants in Algeria always made a pittance as wages. Couldn't hiis father start a business or just work as a public servant in France, as Algerian Jews have French citizenship.

  1. His father converts to Islam

If his father had met a young Muslim girl and fallen deeply in love with her and decided to convert to Islam, that would have made sense. But converting for the sake of converting. Trading 24 hours of fasting on Kippour for a whole month of fasting on Ramadan. If this guy exists, I bet his father's a bum.

  1. Naim knows nothing about Jewish holidays

Or doesn't want to talk about them. He only mentions attending a Hillula, not mentioninig which grave he had visited. No mention of celebrating Passover, the New year or Purim.

  1. As a kid, Naim was not involved in religious life

Muslims don't involve children in religious life, because Muslims believe children can't understand religion so they really start being religious during their teenage years. Naim's only Jewish childhood memories were those of observing his mother praying and not understanding what she was doing. As for the singing on Passover or the Sabbath, he has no memories of those.

  1. Algerian Jews were not allowed to make Alyah to Israel

The press would still be talking about that if that were the case. The journalist got confused watching an archive video on youtube, where one man, I insist, one man, an Algerian Jewish immigrant to Israel, who happens to be a doctor, was at a bar, and complained about life in Israel. The doctor did not cite one concrete reason why he didn't like life in Israel, and said something about Israelis not wanting Algerian Jews to immigrate. I bet being at a bar didn't help with his choice of words. This became distorted into Jews were not allowed to make Alyah to Israel.

  1. The “Sordid” Crémieux Decree

On October 24, 1870, Algerian Jews were granted French citizenship. This saved Algerian Jews from being Dhimmis, or protectees under Islamic law and owing taxes to the Muslims. Algerian Muslims see the decree as a betrayal, while Jews includinng me know the date by heart and think the decree was a rather good thing. But Naim calls the decree a “sordid decree.” 

  1. The French banned the Jews from being burried in France

So what were they, cremated or something? I can't find anything backing up Naim's claim.

  1. Hebrew school in a garage and Sabbath service at the Mosque

There were too few Jews to keep Hebrew schools running and Synagogues were not getting a whole lot visitors before they closed in 1994.

  1. The Jews were “scared.”

Naim says he's scared, and he father was in “constant fear.” I think I need to talk to this guy's father. Lacks ambition, converts to Islam, a whimp. It's true that you don't discuss your religious beliefs with strangers, and that things were pretty scary during the civil war between 1992 and 2000 that's why a lot of people left Algeria, anyone with a foreign passport got out. But I wouldn't be in constant fear simply for being a Jew.

I had to get this one off my chest. Too many people saw the article as proof that there are Jews in Algeria who lead normal lives. The article is, needless to say, a fabrication. You can find thea article in the original French https://dafina.net/gazette/index.php?q=article/moi-naïm-24-ans-futur-rabbin-d’algérie

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