Portugal

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Overview

Located on the Iberian Peninsula in Western Europe, Portugal was once a great sea-faring country with colonies spread across the globe, including Angola, Mozambique, Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Säo Tomé, Brazil and East Timor. But the 20th century brought a military government to power that turned Portugal into an authoritarian state under Dr. António Salazar. During the 1960s, various wars in Portuguese colonies drained much of the country’s wealth, and after the relatively bloodless Carnation Revolution of 1974, many of its colonies were granted independence. The exception was East Timor, which was invaded by Indonesia before it could be granted independence. Portugal continued to lobby on behalf of East Timor, which was finally granted independence in 2002. Portugal has enjoyed positive diplomatic relations with the US since just after the Revolutionary War, and the country continues to cooperate with the US on matters of counterterrorism and humanitarianism. In fact, the Portuguese government cooperated so readily with the government of George W. Bush that an investigation is looking into whether the CIA made secret stopovers in Portugal while ferrying terrorism suspects to hidden CIA prisons in other countries. 

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Basic Information

Lay of the Land: In Western Europe, forming the western strip of the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal is bounded on the north and east by Spain, and on the south and west by the Atlantic Ocean. The Tagus River bisects the country on a northeast-southwest slant, entering the Atlantic at Lisbon. The mountainous north enjoys considerable rainfall, while the drier south has a gentler terrain.

 
Population: 10.7 million
 
Religions: Roman Catholic 80%, Protestant 4%, Buddhist 0.6%, Muslim 0.3%, Mormon 0.3%, Chinese Universalist 0.2%, Hindu 0.06%, non-religious 7.5%.
 
Ethnic Groups: Homogeneous Mediterranean stock, black African citizens of former Portuguese colonies, immigrants from Eastern Europe (since 1990).
 
Languages: Portuguese (official) 95.2%, Asturian 0.2%, Galician 0.1%, Miranda do Douro (official in certain regions) 0.1%, Caló 0.05%, Vlax Romani 0.005%.
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History

Portugal was originally settled in the 1st century BC by waves of invading Celts from Central Europe. Celts intermarried with members of other tribes and began to form settlements in the area that was to become Portugal.

 
By 219 BC, the Romans invaded Portugal, and within 200 years, the entire Iberian Peninsula had been annexed to the Roman Empire. During this time, many of Portugal’s cities and towns were founded.
 
Meanwhile, the Carthaginians, Rome’s adversaries, were expelled from their coastal colonies during the Second Punic War. At this time, the Romans re-conquered the city of Cale, a settlement founded at the mouth of the Douro River, and renamed it “Portus Cale”,
 
In the 4th century and early 5th century, Germanic tribes invaded Portugal and kept the area in perpetual warfare until the Visigoths eventually conquered the peninsula in 584-585.
 
In 711, the Islamic Moors (mainly Berber with some Arabs) from North Africa invaded the Iberian Peninsula, destroying the Visigothic Kingdom. But many of the Goths took refuge in the Asturian highlands and conspired to reconquer their lands, a movement that came to be known as the Reconquista.
In 868, Count Vímara Peres re-conquered the country between the rivers Minho and Douro and renamed it “Portucale.”
 
In 1065, Portugal gained de jure independence, as the Kingdom of Galicia and Portugal. Garcia II was named king, though he found much opposition among feudal nobles. In 1095, Portugal separated from Galicia.
 
By the end of the 11th century, Burgundian knight Henry became count of Portugal, and merged the country with the county of Coimbra. Henry declared independence for Portugal while a civil war raged between León and Castile, but he died before he could see this happen.
 
By 1143, Portugal was recognized as a sovereign nation by the Pope. 
 
From 1249 to 1250, the Algarve, the southernmost region, was finally re-conquered by Portugal from the Moors, forming the borders of the country today. In 1255, the capital shifted to Lisbon.
 
In the fourth and fifth centuries, Portuguese explorers, including Vasco da Gama, Bartolomeu Dias, and Pedro Álvares Cabral, traveled to the Canary Islands, Brazil, India, and Japan. Portugal gained many colonies during this time, including territories in Brazil, Africa, East Timor, Macau, and Goa.
 
On August 4, 1578, Sebastian of Portugal, the heir to the throne, died in battle in Morocco. This led to dynastic disputes during the late 1570s and early 1580s in which Philip II of Spain claimed the Portuguese throne on the basis that he was the grandson of former Portuguese King Manuel I. António, Prior of Crato, opposed Philip II and claimed to be the out-of-wedlock son of one of the sons of Manuel I. Philip II invaded Portugal and became Philip I of Portugal.
 
The 16th and 17th centuries saw a loss of Portuguese power and wealth due to Spanish rule, which resulted in Spain’s adversaries attacking Portugal’s colonies.
 
From 1595 to 1663, Dutch forces (the Dutch East India Company and the Dutch West India Company) fought against the Portuguese Empire. The companies invaded Portuguese colonies and were victorious in taking over colonies in the Far East but were unsuccessful in conquering Portugal’s South American colonies.
 
A revolt ended Spanish hegemony in 1640, and the House of Braganca was established as Portugal’s ruling family; however, Spain did not recognize its independence until 1668. The House of Braganca ruled until 1910.
 
In the 17th century century, large waves of Portuguese emigrated to Brazil, resulting in a sizable reduction in Portugal’s population. In 1709, John V prohibited emigration.
 
In 1738, Sebastião de Melo began his diplomatic profession as the Portuguese Ambassador to London and later to Vienna. In 1755, he became Prime Minister and implemented many economic and financial regulations that he noticed were successful in Britain. De Melo abolished slavery and restructured the army, the navy, and the University of Coimbra. He also outlawed the practice of limpieza de sangre (cleanliness of blood), in which Old Christians (non-Muslim and non-Jewish peoples) were allowed to discriminate against New Christians (Jews and Muslims who had converted to Roman Catholicism)..
 
On November 1, 1755, an earthquake with a magnitude of 9.0 hit Lisbon and was followed by a tsunami and fires. De Melo survived and successfully began rebuilding the city. King Joseph I subsequently augmented his power, and de Melo gradually became a dictator.
 
In 1762, Spanish troops invaded Portugal because Joseph I refused to ally with France and Spain against Britain. British troops entered Portugal and drove back the Spanish forces. The four nations signed The Treaty of Paris in 1763, ending the Seven Years’ War.
 
Napoleon Bonaparte ordered a French invasion of Portugal in 1807, capturing Lisbon in the process. The British again allied with the Portuguese, expelling the French presence by 1812.
 
The British wanted a railroad between Cairo and Cape Town, but Portugal’s colonial territory interfered with their goals. The Portuguese military withdrew from its African colonies situated in present-day Zimbabwe and Zambia after an ultimatum from the British government.
 
The October 1910 Revolution rid Portugal of its monarchy, transforming it into a republic. The coup d’état was a military rebellion against King Manuel II.
 
Political rivalries and economic instability undermined much of Portugal’s democratic progress. During the next 35 years, Portugal changed power 45 times.
 
The Portuguese Republican Party (PRP) was formed near the end of the monarchy and took over power of Portugal’s First Republic. During World War I, the PRP unsuccessfully attempted to end the Spanish invasion of Portugal and foreign control of their African colonies.
 
A second coup d’état, led by António de Oliveira Salazar in May 1926, resulted in the Second Republic, known as Estado Novo.
 
For the next 42 years, Salazar and his successor, Marcelo Caetano (appointed prime minister in 1968), ruled Portugal as an authoritarian “corporate” state.
 
In the early 1960s, various wars against independence movements in Portugal’s African territories began to drain labor and wealth from Portugal. Professional dissatisfaction within the military, coupled with a growing sense of the futility of the African conflicts, led to the formation of the clandestine “Armed Forces Movement” in 1973.
 
The Portuguese corporate state came to an end on April 25, 1974, when the Armed Forces Movement seized power in a relatively bloodless coup. They established a provisional military government following the “Carnation Revolution” and implemented many democratic reforms. In 1975, Portugal granted independence to its Overseas Provinces (Províncias Ultramarinas in Portuguese) in Africa (Mozambique, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde and São Tomé and Príncipe). Nearly one million Portuguese or persons of Portuguese descent fled these territories and were known as retornados. During the same year, Indonesia invaded East Timor, which was a Portuguese province before independence could be granted.
 
In the wake of Portuguese withdrawal, many of the country’s former colonies were ravaged by brutal civil wars. The Angolan Civil War (1975-2002) and Mozambican Civil War (1977-1992), in particular, were responsible for millions of deaths and refugees. Portugal continued to lobby for East Timor’s independence from Indonesia, since it was still recognized as Portuguese by the UN. After a referendum in 1999, East Timor voted for independence, and Portugal recognized its independence in 2002.
 
In 1986, Portugal entered the European Economic Community, and left the European Free Trade Association, which had been founded by Portugal and its partners in 1960. The Portuguese contributed to the founding of the euro and the Eurozone in 1999. 
 
On December 1, 2009, the Treaty of Lisbon entered into force, improving the efficiency and legitimacy of the European Union.
 
History of Portugal (Wikipedia)
History of Portugal (Virtual Jewish Library)
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Portugal's Newspapers

A Bola (Portuguese)

Açoriano Oriental (Portuguese)
Algarve Buzz (Portuguese)
Algarve Resident (English)
Diário As Beiras (Portuguese)
Diário de Noticias (Portuguese)
Expresso (Portuguese)
Jornal de Negócios (Portuguese)
News Weekly (English)
Público (Portuguese)
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History of U.S. Relations with Portugal

Portuguese explorers may have preceded Columbus in the New World, and were the first to discover California when João Rodrigues Cabrillo arrived in San Diego Bay on September 9, 1542. 

 
The US has maintained diplomatic ties since just after the Revolutionary War. Portugal was the first neutral nation to recognize the United States. On February 21, 1791, President George Washington named Col. David Humphreys as US minister. The US began operating a Consulate in Portugal in 1795 in Ponta Delgada.
 
A few Portuguese Jews played important roles in the development of America’s commerce, like Aaron Lopez, who introduced the sperm whale oil industry to Rhode Island, and Abraham de Lyon, who introduced grape cultivation to Georgia. Many of the sailors in the American whaling industry were Portuguese men recruited from the island chain of the Azores, who left in search of better economic opportunity and to avoid mandatory service of eight years in the Portuguese military. 
 
Portugal has historically had one of the highest emigration rates in Europe. Up until the mid 20th century, 80% of émigrés moved to Brazil, although more recently America has become the principal destination. Large-scale immigration began in the 1870’s and peaked between 1910 and 1920. However, in 1917, the US established a literacy requirement for new immigrants, and since 70% of Portuguese immigrants before 1917 were illiterate, this law barred a majority of likely immigrants from entering the country. 
 
The quota-based Immigration Act of 1924 further restricted immigration until the more liberal Immigration Act of 1965 reopened US borders once again. When earthquakes and volcanic eruptions rocked the Azores in 1958, the Azorean Refugee Act allowed 4,800 of the islanders to immigrate to America. In the 1960’s and 1970’s, about 12,000 Portuguese immigrated per year, but since the 1980’s the rate has declined to about 3,500 annually.
 
Between 1950 and 1951, Portugal benefited from the Marshall Plan, receiving $70 million. However, relations were sometimes strained because the US supported anti-colonialism in Portuguese Africa in the 1960s and 1970s.
 
In 1974, Portugal experienced a military coup which led to the leadership of General António Spínola. The period following the coup was known as the “Continuing Revolutionary Process,” in which liberal-democratic forces opposed liberal-communist forces. The US opposed the Portguese Communist Party’s leftist leadership, which was succeeding in the revolution. The US ambassador to Lisbon, Frank Carlucci, supported democratic campaigns. The US and NATO jointly aided socialist groups to prevent a communist takeover.
 
As Portuguese politics came to resemble European politics in the 1980s and the government began to stabilize into a democracy, the US lessened aid to Portugal, especially military aid.
 
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Current U.S. Relations with Portugal

Noted Portuguese-Americans

Athletes:
Billy Martin: He was a second baseman and is best known for managing the New York Yankees. His father was from Azores.
Jason Kapono: Kapono is a basketball player who plays for the Philadelphia 76ers. He has 250 three-point shots and is currently third place in NBA 3-point shooting accuracy. He is part Hawaiian and part Portuguese.
Tony Lema: A professional golfer, Lema won 12 PGA tournaments and the British Open in 1964. Lema’s parents have Portuguese roots.
 
Author:
Danielle Steel: The novelist is known for her dramas and is allegedly the eighth best-selling writer. She has Portuguese roots on her mother’s side.
 
Entertainment:
Mary Astor: The actress won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in The Great Lie (1941). Her mother was from Illinois, but was of Portuguese and Irish descent.
Ray Bolger: Bolger’s family was born in Massachusetts to a family with Portuguese and Irish roots. He is famous for his role in The Wizard of Oz (1939) as the Scarecrow.
Joe DeRita: DeRita was an American comedian known for being ”Curly-Joe” of the Three Stooges. His Portuguese heritage stems from his mother.
Tom Hanks: The actor-producer-director won Best Actor Academy Awards for his 1993 film Philadelphia and 1994 film Forrest Gump. Hanks’ maternal grandparents carried Portuguese links from the Azores Islands.
Carmen Miranda: Born in Várzea da Ovelha, Portugal, Miranda is remembered for her fruit hat in the 1943 movie The Gang’s All Here.
Keanu Reeves: Reeve’s father is of English, Hawaiian, Chinese, and Portuguese ancestry. He is known for his role in The Matrix trilogy.
Meredith Vieira: All four of her grandparents emigrated from the Azores archipelago of Portugal. She is known for hosting Who Wants to Be a Millionaire and co-hosts NBC’s Today.
Don Ho: Ho was of Chinese, Hawaiian, Portuguese, Dutch, and German ancestry. He starred in his comedy-variety show in 1976, The Don Ho Show.
 
Military:
Leroy A. Mendonca: Mendoca is part-Filipino, part-Portuguese. The sergeant fought for the US for the Korean War and was posthumously awarded a Medal of Honor.
 
Music:
Joe Perry: Perry is the lead guitarist, occasional vocalist, and songwriter for Aerosmith. Rolling Stone lists him as one of the top 100 guitarists of all time. His father’s family is from the Madeira archipelago.
David Lee Roth: Roth’s grandparents are originally from the Azores Islands. He is known for being the lead singer in the rock group Van Halen.
John Philip Sousa: The Portuguese-Bavarian composer is remembered for his numerous compositions of marches.
Public Service:
Benjamin Cardozo: He was a lawyer and Supreme Court Justice. His grandparents were Portuguese Sephardic Jews.
 
Miscellaneous:
Emma Lazarus: Lazarus is a poet known for the sonnet “The New Colossus” which is engraved on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty. She is a Portuguese Sephardic Jew born in New York. Gershom Mendes Seixas: In the 1760s Seixas became the first Jewish religious leader in the United States. His father was born in Lisbon.
Maria Isilda Ribeiro: She is known for making the US flag that was planted on the moon. Ribeiro was born in 1909 in northern Portugal.
 
 
Relations between the United States and Portugal are warm and cordial. Most recently, the two nations have cooperated on counter-terrorism and humanitarian efforts, including operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.
 
Portugal considers itself “Atlanticist,” stressing its strong ties with Europe and the United States, especially on defense and security issues. As host of NATO’s “Joint Command Lisbon,” Portugal emphasizes its interest in transatlantic security issues. The military relationship between the US and Portugal is centered on the 1995 Agreement on Cooperation and Defense (ACD). For 50 years, Lajes Air Base in the Azores has played an important role in supporting US military aircraft.
 
Portuguese Foreign Minister Luís Amado announced in June 2009 that Portugal would take in two Guantánamo Bay detainees as free men, Mohammed al-Tuman and Moammar Badawi Dokhan. The Pakistani army took 18-year old al-Tuman prisoner along with his father. Both were beaten and tortured after their capture. Al-Tuman pleaded innocence.
 
Dokhan was accused of joining the Taliban.According ti the Pentagon, his name was found on a “list of incarcerated associates found on a computer used by suspected al Qaeda members…”
 
In the 2000 census, 1,176,615 people identified themselves as being of Portuguese.
The states with the largest Portuguese populations are California (330,810), Massachusetts (279,513), Rhode Island (91,387), New Jersey (72,193), Hawaii (48,521), Connecticut (44,695), and New York (43,829).
 
There are about 20,000 Americans living in Portugal.
 
In 2006, 204,000 Americans visited Portugal. Tourism dropped off sharply in 2003-2004, when the number of annual tourists decreased from 252,581 to 151,000.
 
In 2006, 71,406 Portuguese visited the US. The number of tourists has grown consistently since 2002, when 56,012 Portuguese came to America.
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Where Does the Money Flow

US exports to Portugal totaled $1.1 billion in 2009 while US imports from Portugal amounted to $1.6 billion.

 
In 2009, US exports to Portugal included civilian aircraft, engines, equipment, and parts at $143.3 million; coal and fuels at $82.1 million; semiconductors at $75.3 million; parts for military-type goods at $42,040; unmanufactured tobacco at $42.0 million; and generators at $41.7 million.
 
US imports from Portugal in 2009 included miscellaneous petroleum products at $308.2 million; “other (boxes, belting, glass, abrasives, etc.)” at $148.6 million; cotton apparel and household goods at $126.5 million; paper and paper products at $89.2 million; and new and used passenger cars at $82.8 million.
 
US-Portuguese trade has been declining due to growing Portuguese trade with the European Union.
 
The FY 2011 Foreign Aid Budget Request for Portugal is $100,000 for International Military and Education Training. Portugal is unable to meet its NATO goals, which require Portuguese military forces to be trained at the same level as other NATO members.
 
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Controversies

Portugal Investigates CIA Stopovers

Portugal’s attorney general opened a criminal investigation in 2007 into claims that CIA flights, some of them allegedly carrying terror suspects, made stopovers in the country. The investigation had “many leads” to pursue after a Portuguese deputy at the European Parliament presented a dossier of allegations. A report published by a European Parliament committee said that Britain, Poland, Germany, Italy and other EU nations were aware of CIA flights over Europe and of “extraordinary rendition,” a practice in which the US government sent foreign terror suspects to third countries for interrogation. Though there was no direct evidence that CIA extraordinary rendition flights had used Portugal as a stopover, the report urged the government to continue investigating whether CIA flights entered the country.
 
Ana Gomes, a European Parliament deputy, met with the attorney general and gave him evidence that dozens of CIA planes had landed in Portugal, some of them flying to or from the US military prison for terror suspects at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. Gomes said she collected statements from witnesses who claimed to have seen handcuffed prisoners at an airport in Portugal’s mid-Atlantic Azores Islands. She also alleged that local authorities knew Portugal was being used for CIA flights. The attorney general’s decision to launch a formal investigation proved embarrassing for the government. However, Foreign Minister Luis Amado said authorities had not unearthed any evidence of CIA flights and would not investigate the matter further.
 
On May 29, 2009, the case was shelved because “’no unlawful practices of a criminal nature’ were carried out in the ‘national territory.’” Gomes criticized the failure of the investigations and the “limited scope of the investigation.”
 
Evidence for about 115 stopovers by CIA-associated aircraft and six ghost detainees (detainees whose identities are hidden) has been gathered.
 
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Human Rights

According to the State Department, “Police and prison guards occasionally beat or otherwise abused detainees and prisoners, incarcerated minors were not held separately from adults, prison conditions were poor, and persons detained by police did not have an effective right to an attorney.” Prison and prison conditions are cited as the main problems, but incidents of women trafficking and sexual exploitation are also documented.

 
Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, and Degrading Treatment or Punishment
There were credible reports of disproportionate use of force by police and of mistreatment and other forms of abuse of detainees by prison guards. The Inspectorate General of Internal Administration (IGAI) investigated new reports of mistreatment and abuse by police and prison guards.
 
411 complaints against the Public Security Police and 482 complaints against the Republican National Guard were reported in 2008. The complaints were investigated, and officers found guilty were handed punishments ranging from suspension to prison sentences.
 
Prison and Detention Center Conditions
Prison conditions remained poor, and guards continued to mistreat prisoners occasionally. Other problems included overcrowding, inadequate facilities, poor health conditions, and violence among inmates.
 
The two prisons receiving the most allegations of physical mistreatment of prisoners are the Monsanto High Security and Coimbra Central Prisons. Allegations include “punches, kicks, and blows with batons.”
 
Many prisoners were diagnosed with HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C.
 
Official Corruption and Government Transparency
Although there were no official reports of corruption in the central government, the media did report of corruption involving local government officials.
 
The highest-profile corruption cases involved mayors Fatima Felgueiras, Valentim Loureiro, and Isaltino Morais. Felgueiras (Socialist Party), who went abroad from 2003-2005 to escape arrest, was accused of embezzlement and abuse of power, and was being tried in court at year’s end. In November 2008, she received a 39-month suspended prison sentence.
 
Women
Portuguese law enforces regulations against rape when the victim presses charges. The number of rape cases decreased from 212 in 2007 to 193 in 2008.
 
Violence against women, including domestic violence, continued to be a problem. Traditional societal attitudes still discouraged many battered women from using the judicial system.
 
Prostitution is legal and common, and there were reports of violence against prostitutes.
 
In 2009, women made up 47% of the working population and were increasingly represented in business, science, academia, and the professions, but their average salaries were about 23% lower than men’s.
 
Discrimination by employers against pregnant workers and new mothers was a common problem.
 
Children
Child abuse was a problem. Approximately 88% of the cases of crimes against children involved domestic violence.
 
There were reports that Romani parents often used minor children for street begging.
 
The law prohibits forced and compulsory labor, including by children. However, there were reports that women, men, and children were trafficked to the country for labor, and women were trafficked for sexual exploitation.
 
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors

David Humphreys

Appointment: Feb 21, 1791
Presentation of Credentials: May 13, 1791
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 25, 1797
 
John Quincy Adams
Appointment: May 30, 1796
Presentation of Credentials:
Note: Did not serve under this appointment.
 
William Smith
Appointment: Jul 10, 1797
Presentation of Credentials: Sep 8, 1797
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 9, 1801
 
Thomas Sumter, Jr.
Appointment: Mar 7, 1809
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 7, 1810
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 24, 1819
Note: Served at the court of Portugal in Brazil; resident at Rio de Janeiro.
 
John Graham
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 24, 1819
Termination of Mission: Left Rio de Janeiro, Jun 13, 1820
Note: Served at the court of Portugal in Brazil; resident at Rio de Janeiro.
 
Name: John James Appleton
State of Residency: Massachusetts
Title: Chargé d’Affaires
Note: Not commissioned; nomination to be Chargé d’Affaires at Rio de Janeiro rejected by the Senate. Appleton, however, served as Chargé d’Affaires ad interim from Jun 1820 until the Legation to Portugal at Rio de Janeiro was closed in 1821 (his last dispatch dated Jul 12, 1821).
 
Henry Dearborn, Sr.
Appointment: May 7, 1822
Presentation of Credentials:
Termination of Mission: Had farewell audience, Jun 30, 1824
Note: Arrived at Lisbon before Aug 16, 1822; did not report date of presentation of credentials.
 
Thomas L.L. Brent
Appointment: Mar 9, 1825
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 24, 1825
Termination of Mission: Left post on or soon after Nov 28, 1834
Note: Reaccredited on after change of government; presented new credentials Jan 18, 1830.
 
Edward Kavanagh
Appointment: Mar 3, 1835
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 25, 1835
Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge, Apr 19, 1841
 
Washington Barrow
Appointment: Aug 16, 1841
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 28, 1841
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Feb 24, 1844
 
Abraham Rencher
Appointment: Sep 22, 1843
Presentation of Credentials: 20-Feb 24, 1844
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Nov 4, 1847
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 11, 1844.
 
George W. Hopkins
Appointment: Mar 3, 1847
Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1847
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Oct 18, 1849
 
James Brown Clay
Appointment: Aug 1, 1849
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 18, 1849
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 19, 1850
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Mar 18, 1850.
 
Charles B. Haddock
Appointment: Dec 10, 1850
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 17, 1851
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jun 16, 1854
 
John L. O’Sullivan
Appointment: Feb 16, 1854
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 16, 1854
Termination of Mission: Promoted to Minister Resident
Note: Nominated Feb 25, 1856, to be Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary; nomination withdrawn before the Senate acted upon it.
John L. O’Sullivan
Appointment: Jun 29, 1854
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 19, 1854
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 15, 1858
 
George W. Morgan
Appointment: May 11, 1858
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 15, 1858
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 19, 1861
 
James E. Harvey
Appointment: Mar 28, 1861
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 19, 1861
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 15, 1869
 
Samuel Shellabarger
Appointment: Apr 21, 1869
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 15, 1869
Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge, Jan 1, 1870
 
William Cumback
Appointment: Jan 28, 1870
Note: Declined appointment.
 
Charles H. Lewis
Appointment: Mar 15, 1870
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 15, 1870
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Apr 8, 1875
 
Benjamin Moran
Appointment: Dec 15, 1874
Presentation of Credentials: Apr 8, 1875
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Nov 9, 1876
 
Benjamin Moran
Appointment: Aug 15, 1876
Presentation of Credentials: Nov 15, 1876
Termination of Mission: Recall presented by successor, Sep 27, 1882
 
John M. Francis
Appointment: Apr 28, 1882
Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post in capacity of Chargé d’Affaires.
 
John M. Francis
Appointment: Jul 7, 1882
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 5, 1882
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 25, 1884
 
Lewis Richmond
Appointment: Jul 4, 1884
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 23, 1884
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 7, 1885
 
Edward Parke Custis Lewis
Appointment: Apr 2, 1885
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 18, 1885
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jun 14, 1889
 
George B. Loring
Appointment: Mar 30, 1889
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 29, 1889
Termination of Mission: Left post May 31, 1890
 
George S. Batcheller
Appointment: Oct 1, 1890
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 30, 1890
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 17, 1892
 
Gilbert A. Pierce
Appointment: Jan 6, 1893
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 20, 1893
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 24, 1893
 
George William Caruth
Appointment: Apr 25, 1893
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 30, 1893
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 24, 1897
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Aug 22, 1893.
 
Lawrence Townsend
Appointment: Jun 9, 1897
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 18, 1897
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 29, 1899
 
John N. Irwin
Appointment: Apr 12, 1899
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 26, 1899
Termination of Mission: Left post May 15, 1900
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 14, 1899.
 
Francis B. Loomis
Appointment: Jun 17, 1901
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 14, 1901
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 16, 1902
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 10, 1901.
 
Charles Page Bryan
Appointment: Jan 7, 1903
Presentation of Credentials: Apr 25, 1903
Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 16, 1910
 
Henry T. Gage
Appointment: Dec 21, 1909
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 11, 1910
Termination of Mission: Normal relations interrupted Oct 5, 1910; new Government of Portugal still unrecognized by the United States when Gage left post on Nov 19, 1910.
 
Henry S. Boutell
Appointment: Mar 2, 1911
Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post.
 
Edwin V. Morgan
Appointment: May 24, 1911
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 3, 1911
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 11, 1912
 
Cyrus E. Woods
Appointment: Jan 25, 1912
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 20, 1912
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Aug 19, 1913
 
Meredith Nicholson
Note: Not commissioned; nomination withdrawn before the Senate acted upon it.
 
Thomas H. Birch
Appointment: Sep 10, 1913
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 15, 1913
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 15, 1922
 
Fred Morris Dearing
Appointment: Feb 10, 1922
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 6, 1922
Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge, Feb 28, 1930
 
John Glover South
Appointment: Dec 16, 1929
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 26, 1930
Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 28, 1933
 
Robert Granville Caldwell
Appointment: Jun 13, 1933
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 21, 1933
Termination of Mission: Left post May 28, 1937
 
Herbert Claiborne Pell
Appointment: May 27, 1937
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 31, 1937
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 3, 1941
 
Bert Fish
Appointment: Feb 11, 1941
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 26, 1941
Termination of Mission: Died at post Jul 21, 1943
 
R. Henry Norweb
Appointment: Nov 15, 1943
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 3, 1943
Termination of Mission: Promoted to Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary
Note: With the personal rank of Ambassador.
 
R. Henry Norweb
Appointment: May 4, 1944
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 20, 1944
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 15, 1945
 
Herman B. Baruch
Appointment: Feb 9, 1945
Presentation of Credentials: [Apr 12, 1945]
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 9, 1947
Note: Officially recognized as of Apr 12, 1945.
 
John C. Wiley
Appointment: Apr 10, 1947
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 18, 1947
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 15, 1948
 
Lincoln MacVeagh
Appointment: Apr 8, 1948
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 9, 1948
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 26, 1952
 
Cavendish W. Cannon
Appointment: Mar 13, 1952
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 2, 1952
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 1, 1953
 
M. Robert Guggenheim
Appointment: Jun 24, 1953
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 12, 1953
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 19, 1954
 
James C.H. Bonbright
Appointment: Jan 24, 1955
Presentation of Credentials: Feb 18, 1955
Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 27, 1958
 
C. Burke Elbrick
Appointment: Oct 29, 1958
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 13, 1959
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 31, 1963
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 29, 1959.
 
George W. Anderson, Jr.
Appointment: Aug 1, 1963
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 22, 1963
Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 1, 1966
 
W. Tapley Bennett, Jr.
Appointment: May 10, 1966
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 20, 1966
Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 21, 1969
 
Ridgway B. Knight
Appointment: Jul 8, 1969
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 30, 1969
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 24, 1973
 
Stuart Nash Scott
Appointment: Dec 19, 1973
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 23, 1974
Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 12, 1975
 
Frank C. Carlucci
Appointment: Dec 9, 1974
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 24, 1975
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 5, 1978
 
Richard J. Bloomfield
Appointment: Feb 3, 1978
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 10, 1978
Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 10, 1982
 
Henry Allen Holmes
Appointment: Sep 23, 1982
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 15, 1982
Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 26, 1985
 
Frank Shakespeare
Appointment: Aug 2, 1985
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 16, 1985
Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 4, 1986
 
Richard N. Viets
Note: Nomination of Sep 15, 1987, not acted upon by the Senate. An earlier nomination of Jan 21, 1987, was also not acted upon by the Senate.
 
Note: Alan Flanigan (Dec 1986–Aug 1987) and Wesley W. Egan (Aug 1987–Jan 1988) served as Chargé d’Affaires ad interim.
 
Edward Morgan Rowell
Appointment: Jan 19, 1988
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 29, 1988
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 30, 1990
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on May 12, 1988.
 
Everett Ellis Briggs
Appointment: Apr 1, 1990
Presentation of Credentials: May 25, 1990
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 3, 1993
 
Note: Sharon P. Wilkinson served as Chargé d’Affaires ad interim, Sep 1993–Sep 1994.
 
Elizabeth Frawley Bagley
Appointment: Jul 5, 1994
Presentation of Credentials: Sep 21, 1994
Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 3, 1997
 
Gerald S. McGowan
Appointment: Nov 10, 1997
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 10, 1998
Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 3, 2001
 
John N. Palmer
Appointment: Nov 5, 2001
Presentation of Credentials: Nov 28, 2001
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 25, 2004
 
Alfred Hoffman, Jr.
Appointment: Oct 12, 2005
Presentation of Credential: Nov 30, 2005
Termination of Mission: Left post, Sep 15, 2007
 
Thomas F. Stephenson
Appointment: Oct 29, 2007
Presentation of Credential: Nov 21, 2007
Termination of Mission: June 26, 2009
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Portugal's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Vallera, João de

 

João de Vallera became ambassador of Portugal to the United States on January 19, 2007.
 
He was born on June 1, 1950, in Malange in Angola. He graduated with an Economics degree from the University of Lisbon.
 
On January 1, 1974, he joined the Diplomatic Service. Since then, he has served at the Portuguese Embassy in Bonn, at the Permanent Mission to the European Communities in Brussels as the Director-General of European Affairs, and as a delegate to the Convention of the Future of Europe.
 
He then served as the Ambassador to Ireland and Germany, before taking up his post in the United States.
 
On June 24, 2010, he was also credentialed as the Ambassador to the Bahamas.
 
De Vallera is married with one son.
 
 
 

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Portugal's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
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U.S. Ambassador to Portugal

Sherman, Robert
ambassador-image

The next ambassador to the Iberian nation of Portugal will probably be Boston attorney and Obama donor Robert A. Sherman, whom the president nominated for the post on July 25. If confirmed by the Senate as expected, Sherman would succeed Allan Katz, who has served in sunny Lisbon since 2010.

                                                

Born in 1953, Robert Sherman earned a B.A. in Political Science at the University of Rochester in 1975 and a J.D. at Boston University School of Law in 1978.

 

In private practice at a small Boston firm during the 1980s, Sherman took on and won a pro bono case that remains controversial to this day. His clients were parents of severely mentally disabled teens who were students at the Behavior Research Institute (now the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), which made extensive use of “aversive therapy,” including electric shock and withholding of food, in its treatment and in responding to bad behavior. The parents, however, were suing the state of Massachusetts for ordering the school to cease the use of aversive methods, arguing that their children had a right to “effective treatment,” even it offended the sensibilities of lawmakers. The Association for Behavior Analysis, which generally supports aversive therapy, gave Sherman a “Humanitarian Award for the Right to Effective Treatment” in 1987 for his work on the case.

 

Aversive methods are highly controversial, and a series of public scandals regarding the use of electric shock resulted in the school being reported to and investigated by the United Nations for torture—twice. In October 2011, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick signed an order barring the center from using electric shocks with any new students.

 

Leaving private practice for a few years, from 1991 to 1993 Sherman served as assistant attorney general of Massachusetts and chief of the state Consumer Protection Division, a then-45-person organization enforcing state laws protecting consumers. He then spent 1993 as a special counsel for the state attorney general, responsible for federal and multistate initiatives of the Attorney General’s office.

 

Back in private practice, Sherman worked at the law firm of Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC, from 1994 to 1999, starting as special counsel and rising to partner. In 1999, he left Eckert Seamans to co-found the Boston office of the large Miami-based law firm of Greenberg Traurig, where he was co-managing shareholder from 1999 to 2008, focusing his practice on government investigations and litigation, internal corporate investigations, and consumer protection and class action defense.

 

From 2002 to 2004, Sherman became well-known for acting as co-lead counsel for hundreds of people suing the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston for sexual abuse by priests that was covered up by the Church. Plaintiffs were awarded what was at the time the largest single amount ever in a case of clergy sexual abuse.

 

A lifelong Democrat, Sherman has donated more than $80,000 to Democratic candidates and organizations, including $27,000 to the Democratic National Committee. He was a member of Obama for America and served on its national finance committee, raising at least $500,000 for Obama.

 

In January 2013, President Obama appointed Sherman to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council.

   

Sherman has served as a board member of the Children’s Trust Fund, as co-chair of the Boston Arts Academy Annual Gala Benefit, co-chair of the Boston CURE Gala for the Epilepsy Foundation, and as a member of the board of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

-Matt Bewig

 

To Learn More:

Official Biography

31 Shocks Later (by Jennifer Gonnerman, New York Magazine)

Judge Backs Discipline at Institute for Autistic (by Fox Butterfield, New York Times)

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Portugal

Stephenson, Thomas
ambassador-image

 

A native of Delaware, Thomas F. Stephenson served as the United States Ambassador to Portugal from November 21, 2007, until June 26, 2009. Stephenson attended Harvard College, where he received an AB in economics. He received his MBA from Harvard Business School and a JD from Boston College Law School.
 
Stephenson worked as a securities analyst at Fidelity Management Company and helped found Fidelity Ventures. In 1977, he became president of Fidelity Ventures, running the operation until he left in 1987 to join Sequoia Capital. Stephenson was a partner at Sequoia Capital, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm, for 19 years.
 
Stephenson served on dozens of private and public corporate boards in his 38 years as a venture capitalist. He was a member of the executive committee of the board of overseers of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, the board of advisors of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, the board of directors of Conservation International, the Wilson Center Council, and as a Corporate Fund Vice Chairman of the Kennedy Center.
 
Stephenson donated $629,651 to various Republican candidates and causes, including George W. Bush, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Matt Fong, Randy Hoffman, Michael Huffington, Mitt Romney, Norm Coleman, Rick Santorum, Bill Frist and the Republican National Committee, among others.

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Overview

Located on the Iberian Peninsula in Western Europe, Portugal was once a great sea-faring country with colonies spread across the globe, including Angola, Mozambique, Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Säo Tomé, Brazil and East Timor. But the 20th century brought a military government to power that turned Portugal into an authoritarian state under Dr. António Salazar. During the 1960s, various wars in Portuguese colonies drained much of the country’s wealth, and after the relatively bloodless Carnation Revolution of 1974, many of its colonies were granted independence. The exception was East Timor, which was invaded by Indonesia before it could be granted independence. Portugal continued to lobby on behalf of East Timor, which was finally granted independence in 2002. Portugal has enjoyed positive diplomatic relations with the US since just after the Revolutionary War, and the country continues to cooperate with the US on matters of counterterrorism and humanitarianism. In fact, the Portuguese government cooperated so readily with the government of George W. Bush that an investigation is looking into whether the CIA made secret stopovers in Portugal while ferrying terrorism suspects to hidden CIA prisons in other countries. 

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Basic Information

Lay of the Land: In Western Europe, forming the western strip of the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal is bounded on the north and east by Spain, and on the south and west by the Atlantic Ocean. The Tagus River bisects the country on a northeast-southwest slant, entering the Atlantic at Lisbon. The mountainous north enjoys considerable rainfall, while the drier south has a gentler terrain.

 
Population: 10.7 million
 
Religions: Roman Catholic 80%, Protestant 4%, Buddhist 0.6%, Muslim 0.3%, Mormon 0.3%, Chinese Universalist 0.2%, Hindu 0.06%, non-religious 7.5%.
 
Ethnic Groups: Homogeneous Mediterranean stock, black African citizens of former Portuguese colonies, immigrants from Eastern Europe (since 1990).
 
Languages: Portuguese (official) 95.2%, Asturian 0.2%, Galician 0.1%, Miranda do Douro (official in certain regions) 0.1%, Caló 0.05%, Vlax Romani 0.005%.
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History

Portugal was originally settled in the 1st century BC by waves of invading Celts from Central Europe. Celts intermarried with members of other tribes and began to form settlements in the area that was to become Portugal.

 
By 219 BC, the Romans invaded Portugal, and within 200 years, the entire Iberian Peninsula had been annexed to the Roman Empire. During this time, many of Portugal’s cities and towns were founded.
 
Meanwhile, the Carthaginians, Rome’s adversaries, were expelled from their coastal colonies during the Second Punic War. At this time, the Romans re-conquered the city of Cale, a settlement founded at the mouth of the Douro River, and renamed it “Portus Cale”,
 
In the 4th century and early 5th century, Germanic tribes invaded Portugal and kept the area in perpetual warfare until the Visigoths eventually conquered the peninsula in 584-585.
 
In 711, the Islamic Moors (mainly Berber with some Arabs) from North Africa invaded the Iberian Peninsula, destroying the Visigothic Kingdom. But many of the Goths took refuge in the Asturian highlands and conspired to reconquer their lands, a movement that came to be known as the Reconquista.
In 868, Count Vímara Peres re-conquered the country between the rivers Minho and Douro and renamed it “Portucale.”
 
In 1065, Portugal gained de jure independence, as the Kingdom of Galicia and Portugal. Garcia II was named king, though he found much opposition among feudal nobles. In 1095, Portugal separated from Galicia.
 
By the end of the 11th century, Burgundian knight Henry became count of Portugal, and merged the country with the county of Coimbra. Henry declared independence for Portugal while a civil war raged between León and Castile, but he died before he could see this happen.
 
By 1143, Portugal was recognized as a sovereign nation by the Pope. 
 
From 1249 to 1250, the Algarve, the southernmost region, was finally re-conquered by Portugal from the Moors, forming the borders of the country today. In 1255, the capital shifted to Lisbon.
 
In the fourth and fifth centuries, Portuguese explorers, including Vasco da Gama, Bartolomeu Dias, and Pedro Álvares Cabral, traveled to the Canary Islands, Brazil, India, and Japan. Portugal gained many colonies during this time, including territories in Brazil, Africa, East Timor, Macau, and Goa.
 
On August 4, 1578, Sebastian of Portugal, the heir to the throne, died in battle in Morocco. This led to dynastic disputes during the late 1570s and early 1580s in which Philip II of Spain claimed the Portuguese throne on the basis that he was the grandson of former Portuguese King Manuel I. António, Prior of Crato, opposed Philip II and claimed to be the out-of-wedlock son of one of the sons of Manuel I. Philip II invaded Portugal and became Philip I of Portugal.
 
The 16th and 17th centuries saw a loss of Portuguese power and wealth due to Spanish rule, which resulted in Spain’s adversaries attacking Portugal’s colonies.
 
From 1595 to 1663, Dutch forces (the Dutch East India Company and the Dutch West India Company) fought against the Portuguese Empire. The companies invaded Portuguese colonies and were victorious in taking over colonies in the Far East but were unsuccessful in conquering Portugal’s South American colonies.
 
A revolt ended Spanish hegemony in 1640, and the House of Braganca was established as Portugal’s ruling family; however, Spain did not recognize its independence until 1668. The House of Braganca ruled until 1910.
 
In the 17th century century, large waves of Portuguese emigrated to Brazil, resulting in a sizable reduction in Portugal’s population. In 1709, John V prohibited emigration.
 
In 1738, Sebastião de Melo began his diplomatic profession as the Portuguese Ambassador to London and later to Vienna. In 1755, he became Prime Minister and implemented many economic and financial regulations that he noticed were successful in Britain. De Melo abolished slavery and restructured the army, the navy, and the University of Coimbra. He also outlawed the practice of limpieza de sangre (cleanliness of blood), in which Old Christians (non-Muslim and non-Jewish peoples) were allowed to discriminate against New Christians (Jews and Muslims who had converted to Roman Catholicism)..
 
On November 1, 1755, an earthquake with a magnitude of 9.0 hit Lisbon and was followed by a tsunami and fires. De Melo survived and successfully began rebuilding the city. King Joseph I subsequently augmented his power, and de Melo gradually became a dictator.
 
In 1762, Spanish troops invaded Portugal because Joseph I refused to ally with France and Spain against Britain. British troops entered Portugal and drove back the Spanish forces. The four nations signed The Treaty of Paris in 1763, ending the Seven Years’ War.
 
Napoleon Bonaparte ordered a French invasion of Portugal in 1807, capturing Lisbon in the process. The British again allied with the Portuguese, expelling the French presence by 1812.
 
The British wanted a railroad between Cairo and Cape Town, but Portugal’s colonial territory interfered with their goals. The Portuguese military withdrew from its African colonies situated in present-day Zimbabwe and Zambia after an ultimatum from the British government.
 
The October 1910 Revolution rid Portugal of its monarchy, transforming it into a republic. The coup d’état was a military rebellion against King Manuel II.
 
Political rivalries and economic instability undermined much of Portugal’s democratic progress. During the next 35 years, Portugal changed power 45 times.
 
The Portuguese Republican Party (PRP) was formed near the end of the monarchy and took over power of Portugal’s First Republic. During World War I, the PRP unsuccessfully attempted to end the Spanish invasion of Portugal and foreign control of their African colonies.
 
A second coup d’état, led by António de Oliveira Salazar in May 1926, resulted in the Second Republic, known as Estado Novo.
 
For the next 42 years, Salazar and his successor, Marcelo Caetano (appointed prime minister in 1968), ruled Portugal as an authoritarian “corporate” state.
 
In the early 1960s, various wars against independence movements in Portugal’s African territories began to drain labor and wealth from Portugal. Professional dissatisfaction within the military, coupled with a growing sense of the futility of the African conflicts, led to the formation of the clandestine “Armed Forces Movement” in 1973.
 
The Portuguese corporate state came to an end on April 25, 1974, when the Armed Forces Movement seized power in a relatively bloodless coup. They established a provisional military government following the “Carnation Revolution” and implemented many democratic reforms. In 1975, Portugal granted independence to its Overseas Provinces (Províncias Ultramarinas in Portuguese) in Africa (Mozambique, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde and São Tomé and Príncipe). Nearly one million Portuguese or persons of Portuguese descent fled these territories and were known as retornados. During the same year, Indonesia invaded East Timor, which was a Portuguese province before independence could be granted.
 
In the wake of Portuguese withdrawal, many of the country’s former colonies were ravaged by brutal civil wars. The Angolan Civil War (1975-2002) and Mozambican Civil War (1977-1992), in particular, were responsible for millions of deaths and refugees. Portugal continued to lobby for East Timor’s independence from Indonesia, since it was still recognized as Portuguese by the UN. After a referendum in 1999, East Timor voted for independence, and Portugal recognized its independence in 2002.
 
In 1986, Portugal entered the European Economic Community, and left the European Free Trade Association, which had been founded by Portugal and its partners in 1960. The Portuguese contributed to the founding of the euro and the Eurozone in 1999. 
 
On December 1, 2009, the Treaty of Lisbon entered into force, improving the efficiency and legitimacy of the European Union.
 
History of Portugal (Wikipedia)
History of Portugal (Virtual Jewish Library)
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Portugal's Newspapers

A Bola (Portuguese)

Açoriano Oriental (Portuguese)
Algarve Buzz (Portuguese)
Algarve Resident (English)
Diário As Beiras (Portuguese)
Diário de Noticias (Portuguese)
Expresso (Portuguese)
Jornal de Negócios (Portuguese)
News Weekly (English)
Público (Portuguese)
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History of U.S. Relations with Portugal

Portuguese explorers may have preceded Columbus in the New World, and were the first to discover California when João Rodrigues Cabrillo arrived in San Diego Bay on September 9, 1542. 

 
The US has maintained diplomatic ties since just after the Revolutionary War. Portugal was the first neutral nation to recognize the United States. On February 21, 1791, President George Washington named Col. David Humphreys as US minister. The US began operating a Consulate in Portugal in 1795 in Ponta Delgada.
 
A few Portuguese Jews played important roles in the development of America’s commerce, like Aaron Lopez, who introduced the sperm whale oil industry to Rhode Island, and Abraham de Lyon, who introduced grape cultivation to Georgia. Many of the sailors in the American whaling industry were Portuguese men recruited from the island chain of the Azores, who left in search of better economic opportunity and to avoid mandatory service of eight years in the Portuguese military. 
 
Portugal has historically had one of the highest emigration rates in Europe. Up until the mid 20th century, 80% of émigrés moved to Brazil, although more recently America has become the principal destination. Large-scale immigration began in the 1870’s and peaked between 1910 and 1920. However, in 1917, the US established a literacy requirement for new immigrants, and since 70% of Portuguese immigrants before 1917 were illiterate, this law barred a majority of likely immigrants from entering the country. 
 
The quota-based Immigration Act of 1924 further restricted immigration until the more liberal Immigration Act of 1965 reopened US borders once again. When earthquakes and volcanic eruptions rocked the Azores in 1958, the Azorean Refugee Act allowed 4,800 of the islanders to immigrate to America. In the 1960’s and 1970’s, about 12,000 Portuguese immigrated per year, but since the 1980’s the rate has declined to about 3,500 annually.
 
Between 1950 and 1951, Portugal benefited from the Marshall Plan, receiving $70 million. However, relations were sometimes strained because the US supported anti-colonialism in Portuguese Africa in the 1960s and 1970s.
 
In 1974, Portugal experienced a military coup which led to the leadership of General António Spínola. The period following the coup was known as the “Continuing Revolutionary Process,” in which liberal-democratic forces opposed liberal-communist forces. The US opposed the Portguese Communist Party’s leftist leadership, which was succeeding in the revolution. The US ambassador to Lisbon, Frank Carlucci, supported democratic campaigns. The US and NATO jointly aided socialist groups to prevent a communist takeover.
 
As Portuguese politics came to resemble European politics in the 1980s and the government began to stabilize into a democracy, the US lessened aid to Portugal, especially military aid.
 
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Current U.S. Relations with Portugal

Noted Portuguese-Americans

Athletes:
Billy Martin: He was a second baseman and is best known for managing the New York Yankees. His father was from Azores.
Jason Kapono: Kapono is a basketball player who plays for the Philadelphia 76ers. He has 250 three-point shots and is currently third place in NBA 3-point shooting accuracy. He is part Hawaiian and part Portuguese.
Tony Lema: A professional golfer, Lema won 12 PGA tournaments and the British Open in 1964. Lema’s parents have Portuguese roots.
 
Author:
Danielle Steel: The novelist is known for her dramas and is allegedly the eighth best-selling writer. She has Portuguese roots on her mother’s side.
 
Entertainment:
Mary Astor: The actress won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in The Great Lie (1941). Her mother was from Illinois, but was of Portuguese and Irish descent.
Ray Bolger: Bolger’s family was born in Massachusetts to a family with Portuguese and Irish roots. He is famous for his role in The Wizard of Oz (1939) as the Scarecrow.
Joe DeRita: DeRita was an American comedian known for being ”Curly-Joe” of the Three Stooges. His Portuguese heritage stems from his mother.
Tom Hanks: The actor-producer-director won Best Actor Academy Awards for his 1993 film Philadelphia and 1994 film Forrest Gump. Hanks’ maternal grandparents carried Portuguese links from the Azores Islands.
Carmen Miranda: Born in Várzea da Ovelha, Portugal, Miranda is remembered for her fruit hat in the 1943 movie The Gang’s All Here.
Keanu Reeves: Reeve’s father is of English, Hawaiian, Chinese, and Portuguese ancestry. He is known for his role in The Matrix trilogy.
Meredith Vieira: All four of her grandparents emigrated from the Azores archipelago of Portugal. She is known for hosting Who Wants to Be a Millionaire and co-hosts NBC’s Today.
Don Ho: Ho was of Chinese, Hawaiian, Portuguese, Dutch, and German ancestry. He starred in his comedy-variety show in 1976, The Don Ho Show.
 
Military:
Leroy A. Mendonca: Mendoca is part-Filipino, part-Portuguese. The sergeant fought for the US for the Korean War and was posthumously awarded a Medal of Honor.
 
Music:
Joe Perry: Perry is the lead guitarist, occasional vocalist, and songwriter for Aerosmith. Rolling Stone lists him as one of the top 100 guitarists of all time. His father’s family is from the Madeira archipelago.
David Lee Roth: Roth’s grandparents are originally from the Azores Islands. He is known for being the lead singer in the rock group Van Halen.
John Philip Sousa: The Portuguese-Bavarian composer is remembered for his numerous compositions of marches.
Public Service:
Benjamin Cardozo: He was a lawyer and Supreme Court Justice. His grandparents were Portuguese Sephardic Jews.
 
Miscellaneous:
Emma Lazarus: Lazarus is a poet known for the sonnet “The New Colossus” which is engraved on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty. She is a Portuguese Sephardic Jew born in New York. Gershom Mendes Seixas: In the 1760s Seixas became the first Jewish religious leader in the United States. His father was born in Lisbon.
Maria Isilda Ribeiro: She is known for making the US flag that was planted on the moon. Ribeiro was born in 1909 in northern Portugal.
 
 
Relations between the United States and Portugal are warm and cordial. Most recently, the two nations have cooperated on counter-terrorism and humanitarian efforts, including operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.
 
Portugal considers itself “Atlanticist,” stressing its strong ties with Europe and the United States, especially on defense and security issues. As host of NATO’s “Joint Command Lisbon,” Portugal emphasizes its interest in transatlantic security issues. The military relationship between the US and Portugal is centered on the 1995 Agreement on Cooperation and Defense (ACD). For 50 years, Lajes Air Base in the Azores has played an important role in supporting US military aircraft.
 
Portuguese Foreign Minister Luís Amado announced in June 2009 that Portugal would take in two Guantánamo Bay detainees as free men, Mohammed al-Tuman and Moammar Badawi Dokhan. The Pakistani army took 18-year old al-Tuman prisoner along with his father. Both were beaten and tortured after their capture. Al-Tuman pleaded innocence.
 
Dokhan was accused of joining the Taliban.According ti the Pentagon, his name was found on a “list of incarcerated associates found on a computer used by suspected al Qaeda members…”
 
In the 2000 census, 1,176,615 people identified themselves as being of Portuguese.
The states with the largest Portuguese populations are California (330,810), Massachusetts (279,513), Rhode Island (91,387), New Jersey (72,193), Hawaii (48,521), Connecticut (44,695), and New York (43,829).
 
There are about 20,000 Americans living in Portugal.
 
In 2006, 204,000 Americans visited Portugal. Tourism dropped off sharply in 2003-2004, when the number of annual tourists decreased from 252,581 to 151,000.
 
In 2006, 71,406 Portuguese visited the US. The number of tourists has grown consistently since 2002, when 56,012 Portuguese came to America.
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Where Does the Money Flow

US exports to Portugal totaled $1.1 billion in 2009 while US imports from Portugal amounted to $1.6 billion.

 
In 2009, US exports to Portugal included civilian aircraft, engines, equipment, and parts at $143.3 million; coal and fuels at $82.1 million; semiconductors at $75.3 million; parts for military-type goods at $42,040; unmanufactured tobacco at $42.0 million; and generators at $41.7 million.
 
US imports from Portugal in 2009 included miscellaneous petroleum products at $308.2 million; “other (boxes, belting, glass, abrasives, etc.)” at $148.6 million; cotton apparel and household goods at $126.5 million; paper and paper products at $89.2 million; and new and used passenger cars at $82.8 million.
 
US-Portuguese trade has been declining due to growing Portuguese trade with the European Union.
 
The FY 2011 Foreign Aid Budget Request for Portugal is $100,000 for International Military and Education Training. Portugal is unable to meet its NATO goals, which require Portuguese military forces to be trained at the same level as other NATO members.
 
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Controversies

Portugal Investigates CIA Stopovers

Portugal’s attorney general opened a criminal investigation in 2007 into claims that CIA flights, some of them allegedly carrying terror suspects, made stopovers in the country. The investigation had “many leads” to pursue after a Portuguese deputy at the European Parliament presented a dossier of allegations. A report published by a European Parliament committee said that Britain, Poland, Germany, Italy and other EU nations were aware of CIA flights over Europe and of “extraordinary rendition,” a practice in which the US government sent foreign terror suspects to third countries for interrogation. Though there was no direct evidence that CIA extraordinary rendition flights had used Portugal as a stopover, the report urged the government to continue investigating whether CIA flights entered the country.
 
Ana Gomes, a European Parliament deputy, met with the attorney general and gave him evidence that dozens of CIA planes had landed in Portugal, some of them flying to or from the US military prison for terror suspects at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. Gomes said she collected statements from witnesses who claimed to have seen handcuffed prisoners at an airport in Portugal’s mid-Atlantic Azores Islands. She also alleged that local authorities knew Portugal was being used for CIA flights. The attorney general’s decision to launch a formal investigation proved embarrassing for the government. However, Foreign Minister Luis Amado said authorities had not unearthed any evidence of CIA flights and would not investigate the matter further.
 
On May 29, 2009, the case was shelved because “’no unlawful practices of a criminal nature’ were carried out in the ‘national territory.’” Gomes criticized the failure of the investigations and the “limited scope of the investigation.”
 
Evidence for about 115 stopovers by CIA-associated aircraft and six ghost detainees (detainees whose identities are hidden) has been gathered.
 
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Human Rights

According to the State Department, “Police and prison guards occasionally beat or otherwise abused detainees and prisoners, incarcerated minors were not held separately from adults, prison conditions were poor, and persons detained by police did not have an effective right to an attorney.” Prison and prison conditions are cited as the main problems, but incidents of women trafficking and sexual exploitation are also documented.

 
Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, and Degrading Treatment or Punishment
There were credible reports of disproportionate use of force by police and of mistreatment and other forms of abuse of detainees by prison guards. The Inspectorate General of Internal Administration (IGAI) investigated new reports of mistreatment and abuse by police and prison guards.
 
411 complaints against the Public Security Police and 482 complaints against the Republican National Guard were reported in 2008. The complaints were investigated, and officers found guilty were handed punishments ranging from suspension to prison sentences.
 
Prison and Detention Center Conditions
Prison conditions remained poor, and guards continued to mistreat prisoners occasionally. Other problems included overcrowding, inadequate facilities, poor health conditions, and violence among inmates.
 
The two prisons receiving the most allegations of physical mistreatment of prisoners are the Monsanto High Security and Coimbra Central Prisons. Allegations include “punches, kicks, and blows with batons.”
 
Many prisoners were diagnosed with HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C.
 
Official Corruption and Government Transparency
Although there were no official reports of corruption in the central government, the media did report of corruption involving local government officials.
 
The highest-profile corruption cases involved mayors Fatima Felgueiras, Valentim Loureiro, and Isaltino Morais. Felgueiras (Socialist Party), who went abroad from 2003-2005 to escape arrest, was accused of embezzlement and abuse of power, and was being tried in court at year’s end. In November 2008, she received a 39-month suspended prison sentence.
 
Women
Portuguese law enforces regulations against rape when the victim presses charges. The number of rape cases decreased from 212 in 2007 to 193 in 2008.
 
Violence against women, including domestic violence, continued to be a problem. Traditional societal attitudes still discouraged many battered women from using the judicial system.
 
Prostitution is legal and common, and there were reports of violence against prostitutes.
 
In 2009, women made up 47% of the working population and were increasingly represented in business, science, academia, and the professions, but their average salaries were about 23% lower than men’s.
 
Discrimination by employers against pregnant workers and new mothers was a common problem.
 
Children
Child abuse was a problem. Approximately 88% of the cases of crimes against children involved domestic violence.
 
There were reports that Romani parents often used minor children for street begging.
 
The law prohibits forced and compulsory labor, including by children. However, there were reports that women, men, and children were trafficked to the country for labor, and women were trafficked for sexual exploitation.
 
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors

David Humphreys

Appointment: Feb 21, 1791
Presentation of Credentials: May 13, 1791
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 25, 1797
 
John Quincy Adams
Appointment: May 30, 1796
Presentation of Credentials:
Note: Did not serve under this appointment.
 
William Smith
Appointment: Jul 10, 1797
Presentation of Credentials: Sep 8, 1797
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 9, 1801
 
Thomas Sumter, Jr.
Appointment: Mar 7, 1809
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 7, 1810
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 24, 1819
Note: Served at the court of Portugal in Brazil; resident at Rio de Janeiro.
 
John Graham
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 24, 1819
Termination of Mission: Left Rio de Janeiro, Jun 13, 1820
Note: Served at the court of Portugal in Brazil; resident at Rio de Janeiro.
 
Name: John James Appleton
State of Residency: Massachusetts
Title: Chargé d’Affaires
Note: Not commissioned; nomination to be Chargé d’Affaires at Rio de Janeiro rejected by the Senate. Appleton, however, served as Chargé d’Affaires ad interim from Jun 1820 until the Legation to Portugal at Rio de Janeiro was closed in 1821 (his last dispatch dated Jul 12, 1821).
 
Henry Dearborn, Sr.
Appointment: May 7, 1822
Presentation of Credentials:
Termination of Mission: Had farewell audience, Jun 30, 1824
Note: Arrived at Lisbon before Aug 16, 1822; did not report date of presentation of credentials.
 
Thomas L.L. Brent
Appointment: Mar 9, 1825
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 24, 1825
Termination of Mission: Left post on or soon after Nov 28, 1834
Note: Reaccredited on after change of government; presented new credentials Jan 18, 1830.
 
Edward Kavanagh
Appointment: Mar 3, 1835
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 25, 1835
Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge, Apr 19, 1841
 
Washington Barrow
Appointment: Aug 16, 1841
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 28, 1841
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Feb 24, 1844
 
Abraham Rencher
Appointment: Sep 22, 1843
Presentation of Credentials: 20-Feb 24, 1844
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Nov 4, 1847
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 11, 1844.
 
George W. Hopkins
Appointment: Mar 3, 1847
Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1847
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Oct 18, 1849
 
James Brown Clay
Appointment: Aug 1, 1849
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 18, 1849
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 19, 1850
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Mar 18, 1850.
 
Charles B. Haddock
Appointment: Dec 10, 1850
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 17, 1851
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jun 16, 1854
 
John L. O’Sullivan
Appointment: Feb 16, 1854
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 16, 1854
Termination of Mission: Promoted to Minister Resident
Note: Nominated Feb 25, 1856, to be Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary; nomination withdrawn before the Senate acted upon it.
John L. O’Sullivan
Appointment: Jun 29, 1854
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 19, 1854
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 15, 1858
 
George W. Morgan
Appointment: May 11, 1858
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 15, 1858
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 19, 1861
 
James E. Harvey
Appointment: Mar 28, 1861
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 19, 1861
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 15, 1869
 
Samuel Shellabarger
Appointment: Apr 21, 1869
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 15, 1869
Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge, Jan 1, 1870
 
William Cumback
Appointment: Jan 28, 1870
Note: Declined appointment.
 
Charles H. Lewis
Appointment: Mar 15, 1870
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 15, 1870
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Apr 8, 1875
 
Benjamin Moran
Appointment: Dec 15, 1874
Presentation of Credentials: Apr 8, 1875
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Nov 9, 1876
 
Benjamin Moran
Appointment: Aug 15, 1876
Presentation of Credentials: Nov 15, 1876
Termination of Mission: Recall presented by successor, Sep 27, 1882
 
John M. Francis
Appointment: Apr 28, 1882
Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post in capacity of Chargé d’Affaires.
 
John M. Francis
Appointment: Jul 7, 1882
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 5, 1882
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 25, 1884
 
Lewis Richmond
Appointment: Jul 4, 1884
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 23, 1884
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 7, 1885
 
Edward Parke Custis Lewis
Appointment: Apr 2, 1885
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 18, 1885
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jun 14, 1889
 
George B. Loring
Appointment: Mar 30, 1889
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 29, 1889
Termination of Mission: Left post May 31, 1890
 
George S. Batcheller
Appointment: Oct 1, 1890
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 30, 1890
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 17, 1892
 
Gilbert A. Pierce
Appointment: Jan 6, 1893
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 20, 1893
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 24, 1893
 
George William Caruth
Appointment: Apr 25, 1893
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 30, 1893
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 24, 1897
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Aug 22, 1893.
 
Lawrence Townsend
Appointment: Jun 9, 1897
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 18, 1897
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 29, 1899
 
John N. Irwin
Appointment: Apr 12, 1899
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 26, 1899
Termination of Mission: Left post May 15, 1900
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 14, 1899.
 
Francis B. Loomis
Appointment: Jun 17, 1901
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 14, 1901
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 16, 1902
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 10, 1901.
 
Charles Page Bryan
Appointment: Jan 7, 1903
Presentation of Credentials: Apr 25, 1903
Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 16, 1910
 
Henry T. Gage
Appointment: Dec 21, 1909
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 11, 1910
Termination of Mission: Normal relations interrupted Oct 5, 1910; new Government of Portugal still unrecognized by the United States when Gage left post on Nov 19, 1910.
 
Henry S. Boutell
Appointment: Mar 2, 1911
Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post.
 
Edwin V. Morgan
Appointment: May 24, 1911
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 3, 1911
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 11, 1912
 
Cyrus E. Woods
Appointment: Jan 25, 1912
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 20, 1912
Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Aug 19, 1913
 
Meredith Nicholson
Note: Not commissioned; nomination withdrawn before the Senate acted upon it.
 
Thomas H. Birch
Appointment: Sep 10, 1913
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 15, 1913
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 15, 1922
 
Fred Morris Dearing
Appointment: Feb 10, 1922
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 6, 1922
Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge, Feb 28, 1930
 
John Glover South
Appointment: Dec 16, 1929
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 26, 1930
Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 28, 1933
 
Robert Granville Caldwell
Appointment: Jun 13, 1933
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 21, 1933
Termination of Mission: Left post May 28, 1937
 
Herbert Claiborne Pell
Appointment: May 27, 1937
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 31, 1937
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 3, 1941
 
Bert Fish
Appointment: Feb 11, 1941
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 26, 1941
Termination of Mission: Died at post Jul 21, 1943
 
R. Henry Norweb
Appointment: Nov 15, 1943
Presentation of Credentials: Dec 3, 1943
Termination of Mission: Promoted to Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary
Note: With the personal rank of Ambassador.
 
R. Henry Norweb
Appointment: May 4, 1944
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 20, 1944
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 15, 1945
 
Herman B. Baruch
Appointment: Feb 9, 1945
Presentation of Credentials: [Apr 12, 1945]
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 9, 1947
Note: Officially recognized as of Apr 12, 1945.
 
John C. Wiley
Appointment: Apr 10, 1947
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 18, 1947
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 15, 1948
 
Lincoln MacVeagh
Appointment: Apr 8, 1948
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 9, 1948
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 26, 1952
 
Cavendish W. Cannon
Appointment: Mar 13, 1952
Presentation of Credentials: Jun 2, 1952
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 1, 1953
 
M. Robert Guggenheim
Appointment: Jun 24, 1953
Presentation of Credentials: Aug 12, 1953
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 19, 1954
 
James C.H. Bonbright
Appointment: Jan 24, 1955
Presentation of Credentials: Feb 18, 1955
Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 27, 1958
 
C. Burke Elbrick
Appointment: Oct 29, 1958
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 13, 1959
Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 31, 1963
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 29, 1959.
 
George W. Anderson, Jr.
Appointment: Aug 1, 1963
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 22, 1963
Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 1, 1966
 
W. Tapley Bennett, Jr.
Appointment: May 10, 1966
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 20, 1966
Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 21, 1969
 
Ridgway B. Knight
Appointment: Jul 8, 1969
Presentation of Credentials: Jul 30, 1969
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 24, 1973
 
Stuart Nash Scott
Appointment: Dec 19, 1973
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 23, 1974
Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 12, 1975
 
Frank C. Carlucci
Appointment: Dec 9, 1974
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 24, 1975
Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 5, 1978
 
Richard J. Bloomfield
Appointment: Feb 3, 1978
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 10, 1978
Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 10, 1982
 
Henry Allen Holmes
Appointment: Sep 23, 1982
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 15, 1982
Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 26, 1985
 
Frank Shakespeare
Appointment: Aug 2, 1985
Presentation of Credentials: Oct 16, 1985
Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 4, 1986
 
Richard N. Viets
Note: Nomination of Sep 15, 1987, not acted upon by the Senate. An earlier nomination of Jan 21, 1987, was also not acted upon by the Senate.
 
Note: Alan Flanigan (Dec 1986–Aug 1987) and Wesley W. Egan (Aug 1987–Jan 1988) served as Chargé d’Affaires ad interim.
 
Edward Morgan Rowell
Appointment: Jan 19, 1988
Presentation of Credentials: Jan 29, 1988
Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 30, 1990
Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on May 12, 1988.
 
Everett Ellis Briggs
Appointment: Apr 1, 1990
Presentation of Credentials: May 25, 1990
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 3, 1993
 
Note: Sharon P. Wilkinson served as Chargé d’Affaires ad interim, Sep 1993–Sep 1994.
 
Elizabeth Frawley Bagley
Appointment: Jul 5, 1994
Presentation of Credentials: Sep 21, 1994
Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 3, 1997
 
Gerald S. McGowan
Appointment: Nov 10, 1997
Presentation of Credentials: Mar 10, 1998
Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 3, 2001
 
John N. Palmer
Appointment: Nov 5, 2001
Presentation of Credentials: Nov 28, 2001
Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 25, 2004
 
Alfred Hoffman, Jr.
Appointment: Oct 12, 2005
Presentation of Credential: Nov 30, 2005
Termination of Mission: Left post, Sep 15, 2007
 
Thomas F. Stephenson
Appointment: Oct 29, 2007
Presentation of Credential: Nov 21, 2007
Termination of Mission: June 26, 2009
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Portugal's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Vallera, João de

 

João de Vallera became ambassador of Portugal to the United States on January 19, 2007.
 
He was born on June 1, 1950, in Malange in Angola. He graduated with an Economics degree from the University of Lisbon.
 
On January 1, 1974, he joined the Diplomatic Service. Since then, he has served at the Portuguese Embassy in Bonn, at the Permanent Mission to the European Communities in Brussels as the Director-General of European Affairs, and as a delegate to the Convention of the Future of Europe.
 
He then served as the Ambassador to Ireland and Germany, before taking up his post in the United States.
 
On June 24, 2010, he was also credentialed as the Ambassador to the Bahamas.
 
De Vallera is married with one son.
 
 
 

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Portugal's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
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U.S. Ambassador to Portugal

Sherman, Robert
ambassador-image

The next ambassador to the Iberian nation of Portugal will probably be Boston attorney and Obama donor Robert A. Sherman, whom the president nominated for the post on July 25. If confirmed by the Senate as expected, Sherman would succeed Allan Katz, who has served in sunny Lisbon since 2010.

                                                

Born in 1953, Robert Sherman earned a B.A. in Political Science at the University of Rochester in 1975 and a J.D. at Boston University School of Law in 1978.

 

In private practice at a small Boston firm during the 1980s, Sherman took on and won a pro bono case that remains controversial to this day. His clients were parents of severely mentally disabled teens who were students at the Behavior Research Institute (now the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), which made extensive use of “aversive therapy,” including electric shock and withholding of food, in its treatment and in responding to bad behavior. The parents, however, were suing the state of Massachusetts for ordering the school to cease the use of aversive methods, arguing that their children had a right to “effective treatment,” even it offended the sensibilities of lawmakers. The Association for Behavior Analysis, which generally supports aversive therapy, gave Sherman a “Humanitarian Award for the Right to Effective Treatment” in 1987 for his work on the case.

 

Aversive methods are highly controversial, and a series of public scandals regarding the use of electric shock resulted in the school being reported to and investigated by the United Nations for torture—twice. In October 2011, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick signed an order barring the center from using electric shocks with any new students.

 

Leaving private practice for a few years, from 1991 to 1993 Sherman served as assistant attorney general of Massachusetts and chief of the state Consumer Protection Division, a then-45-person organization enforcing state laws protecting consumers. He then spent 1993 as a special counsel for the state attorney general, responsible for federal and multistate initiatives of the Attorney General’s office.

 

Back in private practice, Sherman worked at the law firm of Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC, from 1994 to 1999, starting as special counsel and rising to partner. In 1999, he left Eckert Seamans to co-found the Boston office of the large Miami-based law firm of Greenberg Traurig, where he was co-managing shareholder from 1999 to 2008, focusing his practice on government investigations and litigation, internal corporate investigations, and consumer protection and class action defense.

 

From 2002 to 2004, Sherman became well-known for acting as co-lead counsel for hundreds of people suing the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston for sexual abuse by priests that was covered up by the Church. Plaintiffs were awarded what was at the time the largest single amount ever in a case of clergy sexual abuse.

 

A lifelong Democrat, Sherman has donated more than $80,000 to Democratic candidates and organizations, including $27,000 to the Democratic National Committee. He was a member of Obama for America and served on its national finance committee, raising at least $500,000 for Obama.

 

In January 2013, President Obama appointed Sherman to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council.

   

Sherman has served as a board member of the Children’s Trust Fund, as co-chair of the Boston Arts Academy Annual Gala Benefit, co-chair of the Boston CURE Gala for the Epilepsy Foundation, and as a member of the board of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

-Matt Bewig

 

To Learn More:

Official Biography

31 Shocks Later (by Jennifer Gonnerman, New York Magazine)

Judge Backs Discipline at Institute for Autistic (by Fox Butterfield, New York Times)

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Portugal

Stephenson, Thomas
ambassador-image

 

A native of Delaware, Thomas F. Stephenson served as the United States Ambassador to Portugal from November 21, 2007, until June 26, 2009. Stephenson attended Harvard College, where he received an AB in economics. He received his MBA from Harvard Business School and a JD from Boston College Law School.
 
Stephenson worked as a securities analyst at Fidelity Management Company and helped found Fidelity Ventures. In 1977, he became president of Fidelity Ventures, running the operation until he left in 1987 to join Sequoia Capital. Stephenson was a partner at Sequoia Capital, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm, for 19 years.
 
Stephenson served on dozens of private and public corporate boards in his 38 years as a venture capitalist. He was a member of the executive committee of the board of overseers of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, the board of advisors of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, the board of directors of Conservation International, the Wilson Center Council, and as a Corporate Fund Vice Chairman of the Kennedy Center.
 
Stephenson donated $629,651 to various Republican candidates and causes, including George W. Bush, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Matt Fong, Randy Hoffman, Michael Huffington, Mitt Romney, Norm Coleman, Rick Santorum, Bill Frist and the Republican National Committee, among others.

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