Lebanese researcher Rafic Nasrallah recounted the story of the antisemitic 1840 Damascus blood libel (For more about blood libel accusations, see MEMRI TV clips nos.8758, 7162, 6611, 5284, 3387, 2454, 2443, and 1893) to explain the "truth" behind the August 2020 Beirut Port explosion. Nasrallah spoke on a show that aired on OTV (Lebanon), on September 24, 2021. The host of the show said that "nobody rules out the theory" that Israel has bombed the Beirut Port, but that the Lebanese people deserve to know the truth behind the events. In response, Nasrallah recounted the story of the 19th century Christian priest who was supposedly kidnapped by Jews, saying his blood was used "for something." He said: "Whenever there are scandals related to these things, the truth is gone." For more information about Rafic Nasrallah, see MEMRI TV clip no 5319.
Interviewer: "Nobody rules out the theory that the Israeli enemy bombed the hangar [at the Beirut Port] and so on. But why can’t we know the truth? I, as a Lebanese citizen... The relevant officials have a duty to tell the truth to the Lebanese people. Whoever participated in the investigation, the Lebanese army... Everybody..."
Rafic Nasrallah: "Let me tell you something. I am a man who likes to read. Do you know why the Christian quarter in Damascus is called Bab Touma?
"I’ll tell you the story from the past to demonstrate why we don’t get the truth. Father Thomas... I don’t remember his full name... A decision was made to kidnap him, along with his Muslim assistant, by Jews... Father Thomas was involved in many activities... This was decided by a certain rabbi and his group [of followers]. He was kidnapped and slaughtered in a bronze basin. His blood was used for something.
"After all the investigations, 3 or 4 men were arrested and the rest fled to Egypt. The Ottomans wanted to bring them back in order to execute them. It was a huge story back then. But someone... Look when this happened. The 19th century. Someone contacted the Khedive, and they were taken to Europe. When there are scandals related to these things, the truth is gone."