Psak 5769 Adar 8
Translation from Hebrew of the 8 Adar, 5769 (4 March 2009) statement:
Damages caused to us by the State of Spain and what is the known as the "Holy Inquisition" (hereinafter - inquisition)
8 Adar, 5769
To the honorable Sanhedrin, Great Court of 71, in Jerusalem, by means of the Sanhedrin Court for International Affairs.
Class Action Suit.
The Plaintiffs: David Pizanti, the families and the inheritors and all the descendants of the Jews that were in Spain
The state of Spain and the properties of the Christian Church of Spain.
In the matter of: Damages caused to us by the state of Spain and what is called "The Holy Inquisition" (to be referred to as - the Inquisition).
My family was in Spain until the expulsion of Jews from Spain. Our family appears on the Inquisition lists. This matter was verified by my cousin Professor Sarah Pizanti from Jerusalem, who examined the lists in Spain. I wish to note that I also have, per current Spanish laws, the right to Spanish citizenship. I lived in Spain 32 years ago, for about a year. I also speak Spanish and Ladino. Likewise, I am the owner of real estate that I purchased in southern Spain. It is the job of the Great Court to make justice in the world and to save the oppressed from their oppressors. Like me, there are many other families that were hurt and clearly know about their property rights in Spain. And there are also many families that don't know, but the lists prove that this is the property of Jews that lived in Spain.
For example, the famous Abuchatzeira family, their name also appears on these lists, thus I was told by my friend Yosef Abuchatzeira from Jerusalem.
The Jewish population prior to the expulsion, according to the research of historians, was at a minimum 3/7 of the general population. And that is because genetic testing recently published shows that a fifth of the Spanish population today, after the forced Jewish converts to Christianity (anusim) were assimilated in to the general Spanish population, are of Jewish descent. According to research that has been done, it is known that there were 850,000 Jews, of which two thirds fled and one third remained due to fears of loss of life on the way and loss of property.
From the two thirds that fled, about half of them died due to the hardships of travel. It is known that some of the anusim that remained succeeded to escape later from the threats of the Inquisition and to actualize their rights to live as Jews. But it is also known that a portion of those that remained were murdered by the messengers of the state and the Inquisition. And therefore, the above accounting is not included in the overall calculation regarding the amount of Jews in the general population. For this reason, the number would be more than the above estimate. I do not at present have access to data regarding the scope of those that fled later, but in Hebrew halachic literature, there are many testimonies about this phenomenon. In any event, even if we ignore those that left later, it becomes clear that the Jewish population was at least 3/7 of the general Spanish population (which was close to absolutely the reason for the expulsion).
Because a person who is born and lives in a certain place acquires for himself rights in a place, that is to say by the strength of him being a resident and a citizen, he becomes a partner in the resources of the state in which he lives, therefore 3/7 of the base Spanish resources, already then, that is to say the land, water wells, etc., belong to Jews, be it as a nation or as inheritors. In order to do justice, I request from the court to set that 3/7 of the area of the Spanish state as it would be possible to draw a parallel of latitude which will express that this will pass to the authority of the Jewish nation as national owners of the area.
It should be added to this the additional property which was confiscated by the Spanish state, i.e. silver, gold, valuable items that the expellees could not bring with them, and neither could they sell them in the economic conditions which the government of Spain forced upon them in the expulsion order, and thus houses, planted fields, and crops.
That is to speak of property worth today hundreds of billions of shekels.
Likewise proper adjustment for inflation should be made, and legal interest should be added (for 517 years).
Likewise, I request from the Great Court to require Spain to pay the descendents of those who were tortured while fleeing, as well as inside the Spanish state, in which they were tortured and robbed by the Christian citizens of the state and messengers of the Spanish Inquisition, with the approval of the Spanish government, both before and after the expulsion (as a consequence of many riots that took place with approval of the Spanish state for many years leading up to the expulsion) full compensation including legal adjustment for inflation and interest until today, as above. I do not have the ability to fully measure the robbery, burglary, confiscations, and tortures that the Jewish population of Spain suffered upon which the State of Spain must pay. I request from the court to charge the government of Spain to open and to present all needed information to measure these damages.
According to Jewish law, there is no way to make claims for the many acts of murder that were done with the approval of the Spanish police of that time. And there is also no way, through this claim to remove the moral stain and the national responsibility from Spain for the acts of genocide which were done in Spain, for these acts it is impossible to atone via monetary means.
But on the other hand, I request from the court to evaluate the national demographic and cultural damage which occurred as a result of the oppression and the pogroms, the forced conversions, and that the court should give its opinion that it is incumbent upon Spain to set up a special fund for the demographic and cultural strengthening of the Jewish nation and heritage in a scope, such that when the fund has been actualized, the situation would be as if the expulsion had not occurred. That is to say that the fund would pay Jewish families which preserve their national heritage for the cause of strengthening offspring, and strengthening their culture which was damaged, without hurting their quality of life, such that the demographic entity of those that keep Jewish culture who were expelled from Spain will again arise. And this would be at the instructions of the honorable court.
It should be noted that being that the State of Israel today, also as a result of the expulsion, represents the entire population that lives in the state, and therefore the property that would come to its hands in connection to this claim would be funneled to causes and peoples who were not damaged, and therefore I request to set that the honorable court would be the only one to set the identities of those would be compensated and the identity of their culture.
Signed: David Pizanti, Systems Engineer, Jerusalem