Request to the National Assembly (Parliament) 

for rehabilitation

(Submitted on October 31, 2011)
(ENGLISH TRANSLATION by mlopesazevedo)

Honourable First Lady, President of the Assembly 

Subject: Request for the re-instatement in the Army of  captain  Arthur Carlos Barros Basto of the infantry
, who was the victim of political-religious  segregation in the year 1937.

The present petition is based on the grave violation of human rights and the intolerable violation of the core of fundamental rights materially  protected by the constitution of the Portuguese Republic which requires the intervention of the Parliamentary commission  for constitutional Affairs, Rights, Freedoms and Guarantees  for the following reasons:

1. At a time when anti-Semitism reigned  throughout Europe, when millions of human beings were led like cattle to the  slaughterhouse,  in Portugal, an army officer, Arthur Carlos Barros Basto, was sanctioned for being a Jew and practicing the Jewish religion.

2. As a result, on June 12, 1937, in the disciplinary matter of case no.o. 6 / 1937, the  Superior Disciplinary  Council of the Army  (itself an organ of a regime of  personal power) ruled as proven  that  Arthur Carlos Barros Basto,  "performed the operation of circumcision of
several students (of the Israeli Theological Institute of Porto) pursuant to a precept of the Israeli religion he professes", and who" took attitudes  of exaggerated interest and intimacy in students, kissing them and caressing them frequently " (the image of the Sephardic Jews of Tangier, where the victim  returned to Judaism) - cf. Document No. 1.

3. In light of these proven  facts, the  Superior Disciplinary  Council of the Army found that  Arthur Carlos Barros Basto did not have the, "moral capacity" for the prestige of his function and  the decorum of his uniform, thereby  punishing  him with  "separation from service" provided in Article 178 of the Rules of Military Discipline, published by Decree 16:963, on June 15, 1929.

4. The "separation from service" truly constituted for Arthur Carlos Barros Basto (the officer and the Jew) a civil death penalty. The victim was definitively suspended  from performing his duties,  was definitively impeded  from pursuing  his career, was definitively banned from wearing his  uniform, badges and military insignia, and was forced to forever remain subject to disciplinary action of the Army (in other words, was  forced to maintain  his civilian  life and  religious practice forever shaped by military rules absolutely hostile to the most basic Jewish precepts), under penalty  of being  re-tried, and re-convicted!

5. The facts that the Superior Disciplinary Council of the Army  considered 'proven' (and which led to a finding of  "moral incapacity" and consequent "separation from service" of the Jewish soldier  Arthur Carlos Barros Basto) fall squarely  whithin the universally accepted rights of all humans which existed before they were "proclaimed".

6. Moreover, the decision of Superior Disciplinary Council of the Army,  in total contrast with Dinim norms  that flow from primordial tradition,  impedes anyone, no matter who,  to understand how the judges reached the degree of certainty that they supposedly  achieved in relation to the facts they considered  proven. It is a decision without any basis, which does not  critically examine the means of proof of evidence that was considered or disregarded, and culminates in the censure of  Arthur Carlos Barros Basto for not pursuing the person who denounced him.

7.  April 25* may have corrected many injustices of the past, but at least one man was forgotten, Arthur Carlos Barros BastoThe Jew was forgotten.

In 1975 Lea Montero Azancot Barros Basto (widow of  Arthur Carlos Barros Basto) presented a request  for the reinstatement  of her deceased husband in the Army, but she  received a negative response from the General Staff of the Armed Forces; who, regarding the decision of 1937, and in such an unbelievable manner,  CONFUSED the facts "not proven unanimously", with the facts "proven ", thereby adding  to the illegality previously committed, another more scandalous one. - Cf. Documents paragraphs no. 2 and 3.

By these means, 

the undersigned requests that the Assembly of the Republic proceed to re-integrate her grandfather, Arthur Carlos Barros Basto into the ranks of the Army, having  guiding support
(far beyond Decree-Law No. 173/74 of April 26, applicable to the instant case by reason of "a maiori, ad minus") , from the moral and imprescriptible duty of the state to remedy such a serious violation of international law. "Adonai li vero ira"

Attached: power of attorney and three documents.

Isabel Maria de Barros Teixeira da Silva Ferreira Lopes 
(Granddaughter of Charles Arthur Barros Basto)

Rui da Silva Leal (Lawyer)

(*The Carnation revolution, April 25, 1974, translator's note)

(See Portuguese version below, and more articles about the Captain)



See award winning author Richard Zimler's plea in The Jewish Chronicle.