Wednesday, July 06, 2011

The Moroccan Jew who befriended Arafat


Far be it for this blog to cover the sexual shenanigans of the ex-IMF chief Dominique Strauss- Khan, but the latest bizarre twist in the DSK saga involves the daughter of a Moroccan Jew, Gabriel Banon (pictured).

Banon is no ordinary Moroccan Jew, however. His daughter Tristane, who is accusing Strauss- Khan of attempted rape, is said to be a 'poor mixed-up kid' who has never seen her father. She is the offspring of Gabriel Banon's relationship with a French socialist politician.

Casablanca-born Banon learned much of the Koran by heart in Moroccan madrassahs. An adviser to ex-president Georges Pompidou, Banon went on to become adviser to Yasser Arafat. He mixed in the rich but murky world of the Palestinian diaspora. We do not know exactly what Banon's involvement was with Arafat's financial affairs - some say his job was money laundering. Arafat, whose wife Suha is said to be worth 800 million dollars, sacked Banon for embezzling Palestinian pension funds. After Arafat fired him, Banon went on to work for another paragon of rectitude - Vladimir Putin.

There have been court Jews (stadlanim) through the ages. Banon is said to be a friend of Andre Azoulay, the Moroccan king's adviser. But when does a stadlan became a moser (an informer) - one who betrays his people's interests? Is it a Jewish pathology to serve one's enemies - a sort of extension of the moral confusion engendered by being a 'dhimmi'?

Incidentally, Banon was not the only Jew to work for Yasser Arafat - the late Raffaelo Fellah, a Libyan Jew, was also an economic adviser to the PLO leader.

12 comments:

Sylvia said...

I didn't know Tristane was illegitimate. How could she be if she carries her father's name.
But her background only adds another twist to this saga: DSK himself grew up in Morocco as a child, the son of a Jewish Tunisian mother and an Ashkenazi father.

bataween said...

Sylvia
Nowhere on the internet can I find any reference to the fact that Gabriel Banon and Anne Mansouret were ever married.The Wikipedia entry talks of children 'Patrick, Anne-Laure et Tristane, qu'il (Gabriel) a eue (singular) avec Anne Mansouret." This suggests that Tristane is the only child he had with Anne M. I can find no link between Anne Mansouret and the other two children, suggesting that she was not their mother. As I cannot prove that Tristane was illegitimate I have taken out the word.

Clearly Anne Mansouret and Gabriel Banon were lousy parents. Gabriel abandoned his daughter at birth and Mansouret left her to an alcoholic nanny.

Sylvia said...

Another twist, political this time: Tristane is Pierre Lellouche sister-in-law. He was born in Tunisia, French Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs in charge of Trade, UMP candidate. UMP is Sarkozy's party and therefore opponents of DSK for the French presidency.
Tristane Banon's French-born lawyer, the flamboyant David Koubbi, has an obvious Jewish Moroccan name.
On the other side, you have the no-less flamboyant Bernard-Henri Levy (BHL) a friend and supporter of DSK, born in Algeria in a wealthy Sephardic family.
The whole thing sounds unreal viewed from Israel. Imagine that all these talented people had immigrated to Israel. They more than likely would have been sent to work in a factory and expected to be thankful for that.

Sylvia said...

If she is counted as his daughter and she bears his name then she can't be illegitimate.

Sylvia said...

Pierre Lellouche is married to Anne-Laure Banon, known as Tristane's sister.

bataween said...

Oh I dunno about working in a factory ...if they had moved to Israel they could have outdone Amir Peretz, Moshe Katsav and the Shas MKs in both intrigue and politics!

Raquel Banon said...

People talk and comment without knowing the true.
1)- Tristane has been recognise by my
brother since her birth and 2 years ago she was on holidays in my brother Swiss home,so telling that she had no contactwith her father is not true.
2) Annie- Laure Banon is divorced from Lellouch long time ago.
3)if you want to know more about my brother, buy the book he wrote 3 months ago.
4)To Silvia,i would like you to stop your comments around the jewish from Morroco or sefardies origine,or do you really think that all the garbage come from Sefardies,please look around your Ashkenazies comunity.

bataween said...

Raquel
Thank you for the update.
How do you know Sylvia is not Sephardi herself?

Raquel Banon said...

because she puts too much enfasis in telling the origine of the people she is talking about and i think that's not very fair because it gives the feeling that for her there is Jews of first category and and all the rest is garbage.

bataween said...

She is Sephardi, I believe.

Raquel Banon said...

we leave in a global world with a global economy,Do you really think that to be Sephardie or Askenazy it's
important today?

Anonymous said...

Having met the Banon family in New York (except Tristane), I can tell you that they are thoughtful, intelligent, good people.
Who is to say what role Gabriel played with the PLO?