Benjamin Netanyahu and his Sephardic Roots


The current Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu is known for his right of center policies and tough stance towards terrorism and Iran. Perhaps lesser known is the fact that his father, Benzion Netanyahu was a prolific writer on the history of Jews in Spain. Benzion Netanyahu was particularly focused on studying Crypto-Judaism and the Inquisition.

Medieval Spain

It turns out, that while Benzion Netanyahu may have been focused on the history of Jewish Spain as a point of intellectual and academic fascination, a deeper connection also exists. It is unlikely that the senior Netanyahu knew, but a DNA tests appears to indicate that the Netanyahu clan descended from Jewish settlers in Lithuania who at some point in history originated in the Iberian Peninsula.

For more information, please visit the article titled “Netanyahu reveals his roots go back to Spain” at the Times of Israel.

The test lends credence to the idea that Jews from all backgrounds share a, or at least some common genetics elements.

For more information on Benzion Netanyahu’s works, please see my book review on The Marranos of Spain.

Posted by Rabbi Juan Bejarano-Gutierrez, the director of the B’nei Anusim Center for Education, and author of What is Kosher?  Also, follow us on Crypto Jews in Dallas on Facebook.

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