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At long last, proof of EU citizenship! Passaporto in hand!

by gioele Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 04:04:58 PM EST

Yeah! I finally got my passport!

For those of you who don't know, or remember, I wrote a diary in January of 2007 re: my quest for recognition of Italian citizenship by descent. The link is here: Jure Sanguinis Diary

Here's the picture of me, with vital information redacted, in my shiny new EU passport.

Continued below the fold....

It was a long wait, more than 18 months, from when I submitted my original application to the consulate until recognition. But it is possible, and I urge those US denizens who have even a fraction of Italian blood to explore whether or not they may qualify for this procedure.

Unfortunately, in June, my wife and I had to come back to the States and, after a couple of months back, have already started settling in. I told my wife that this is what would happen. After a year in Germany waiting -- and pleading with the consulate to hurry up -- for the recognition process to be completed, I assured her that it would not happen until we had returned to the US and got back to work... sure enough.

At this point it will be a little difficult to pull up stakes and head back to Europe right away. However, although my wife has a promising chance of a position with a prominent solar company here in the Bay Area, there is no offer forthcoming as of yet. So, if we are able to find employment in the EU in the next couple of months, I don't think our roots are so deep yet that we won't seriously consider returning.

It has been so strange, this process that has taken almost 4 years to come to fruition. It finally did, thankfully, bear fruit. A funny rectangular fruit, but a sweet fruit it is.... It still seems quite unreal, and I find myself having to look at the passport to reassure myself that it has, indeed, happened.

I've been so busy lately that I haven't had time to post on the Fri. Photography Blog (gasp!), nor chance to stay abreast of the many wonderful diaries here on the EU Tribune. I aim to become more involved as I finish with all of the chores related to returning to one's home after a year abroad.

Thanks to you all for being here, and to Jerome and the FPers for providing this fantastic forum for both Europeans and Americans to discuss issues of import.

Ciao for now,


How many of you have multiple passports? Or the right to acquire more than one?
. What is a passport, and who the hell cares? 0%
. I have only one passport and no right (that I know of) to another. 59%
. I have two passports (or the right to two). 18%
. I have three passports (or the right to three). 13%
. I have four or more passports (or the right to four+)! 0%
. I don't know... 0%
. If I told you then I would have to kill you... 9%

Votes: 22
Results | Other Polls
Great news, gioele, and thanks for sharing it with us!
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 04:54:02 PM EST
Indeed! Gioele's wife should also consider why one of the first movers in harnessing the wind - our very own Crazy Horse - is in Europe. ;-)

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:03:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Though it's just an(other) internship, I am soooo proud to say that my wife was working in/with the small group in a certain company that landed a certain solar deal in central coastal California for PG&E last week. One that dwarfs, by a factor of ten, the next largest silicon based PV project in the world (which was also built by this company in Spain). 250 MW! Google it....

So it's not like nothing is happening on the renewable front, but we obviously still have a long way to go. If this company doesn't see my wife as the model employee that she is and make her and offer that she can't refuse, I know we are going to be looking hard for a way to make the jump back across the pond.

And thanks for the encouragement in that direction.

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:27:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hey, I understand all these pressures. They are real. We are all just human beings trying to support love and community. We are all trying to be the best neighbours we can be.  Your new passport is symbolic - but you can move when the shit hits the fan!

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:54:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yeah, so true....

Though this company does have a burgeoning EU division, so maybe it doesn't have to be an either/or situation. Perhaps she'll get the job and then we can move to Europe shortly thereafter with a job!

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 06:04:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That would be great. Jobs are going to be in short supply everywhere soon (IMO): but anything in renewables is going to be in demand.

I've thought about this in relation to my own work - but have come to the conclusion that communication skills will be equally in demand. So I am not panicing - yet!

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 06:09:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hi Gioele,

You are an inspiration--I was borne in Torino, Italy and had--for a very short time-- an Italian passport. I was adopted to the US when I was a little over 2 years old however and have never bothered with getting a renewed Italian passport. I took my US citizenship when I was 6 and at that time, as was the norm, denounced my Italian citizenship (I was way too young to know what I was doing)

I live in the US now. What would you recommend as a first step in renewing my Italian passport?

Thanks in advance, and congrats!

by delicatemonster (delicatemons@delicatemonster.com) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:42:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Aw shucks, thanks DM!

I think that you may actually still be a citizen of Italy!

There are cases where Italian citizen minors (at one time the age of majority in Italy was 21 yrs.) have been naturalized as Australian citizens and been told that they were still Italians in the eyes of Italian law because they could not renounce their citizenship because they were still minors... Does that make any sense?

In short, it may be that you couldn't have legally given your citizenship up! Do you have a copy (an estratto) of your original birth certificate from Torino? If so, I would approach the consulate having jurisdiction over your residence, armed with all your documents (including old Italian passport, naturalization and adoption documents), and ask them whether your'e still a citizen.

Worst case, if you move to Italy for a year as a legal resident (student, live with family, etc.), and declare your intention to do so at the outset, you can reclaim your citizenship. Ask the consulate for the forms to declare your intent.

Let me know if you need any more info. I can be emailed at the addy below or you can check out the citizenship section of the forum at the web site: Expats in Italy or at the citizenship info section of the same site...

There's lots of info on the forum and a recent thread on reclaiming citizenship if lost (like you may have).

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 01:25:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks for the in depth response, Gioele! I'm gathering up my documents (baptismal certificate from St. Agnes in Torino, Italian passport & naturalization papers)and checking the Italian embassy hours in Philadelphia.

I'll let you know how it goes.


by delicatemonster (delicatemons@delicatemonster.com) on Sat Aug 23rd, 2008 at 05:50:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks afew!

What a long strange trip it's been...

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:36:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Excellent! Please come to Europe when you can...."you know it makes sense"

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:04:55 PM EST
Of course it makes sense!

But I'm Italian... sooooo...  ;-)

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:30:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's no excuse! Follow your emotions as an Italian....

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:50:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:58:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Welcome to the European citizens community, Gioele!

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:49:41 PM EST
Thanks Melanchthon!

It sure feels good!

I'm still in a state of euphoria punctuated by moments of complete delirium.

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 05:53:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What is the US Government's position on dual citizenship in cases such as yours?  A friend of mine was the son of Irish immigrants and one of his sons used that fact to claim Irish citizenship.  He is now working for Microsoft in Europe.  I have always wondered about this, having read contradictory accounts.

Is your wife's prospect with one of the firms involved in ?this

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 08:01:57 PM EST
#1: Not a problem...

State Dept Dual Nationality Page

#2: In order to retain a facade of anonymity, I will neither confirm nor deny...


by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Mon Aug 18th, 2008 at 09:10:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Congratulations, you are now legally authorized to live and visit civilization :)

BTW if you want to do something fun in the short-term with your new passport, go visit Cuba.  It's now LEGAL for ya :)


Night and day you can find me Flogging the Simian

by soj on Tue Aug 19th, 2008 at 12:49:31 AM EST
No, it's not. As long as you're still a U.S. citizen, it remains illegal. Your chances of getting caught may be lower, but make sure you pick an airline that doesn't share data with the U.S.
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Tue Aug 19th, 2008 at 01:15:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks soj....
by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:37:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Congratulations! Welcome to the wonderful world of Italian citizenry in which you have a duty- not a right- to vote!
(But it will take a long time to make some sense of Italian politics.)
by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Tue Aug 19th, 2008 at 05:04:53 AM EST
Grazie, de Gondi!

I wish it would have happened before the last election so I could vote.

It was weird being in Sicily while they were going on and not being able to participate yet...

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:40:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hi Gioele, congratulations. I hope to ses your photos again on Fridays.

Hey, Grandma Moses started late!
by LEP on Tue Aug 19th, 2008 at 04:18:01 PM EST
Hey LEP!


I am still getting organized, but I intend to...

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:41:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well done, you. Even so, it's a win-win situation. If you're in the Bay area, that's as close as you can get to civilization without actually being there.
by northsylvania on Tue Aug 19th, 2008 at 04:27:20 PM EST
That's what I kept on saying when I was in Germany contemplating having to return, "I ain't cryin' to have to go back to Berkeley". And I ain't cryin'... yet...
by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:47:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's good to hear your enthusiasm for belonging in two countries and I'm glad it paid off.  It opens the horizons of life, doesn't it?

I wonder how many US citizens have the right to dual citizenship and how many would consider it.

Our knowledge has surpassed our wisdom. -Charu Saxena.

by metavision on Tue Aug 19th, 2008 at 05:59:04 PM EST
I guess nearly all. Germany repatriated Chris Kaman, an NBA basket ball player for the Olympics without him ever being in Germany before. His grandmother or so was German.

Der Amerikaner ist die Orchidee unter den Menschen
Volker Pispers
by Martin (weiser.mensch(at)googlemail.com) on Tue Aug 19th, 2008 at 06:04:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Many, many, many!

I wouldn't say all, many lost it (and for their descendants as well) when they naturalized. the mode of transmission is usually birth of a child in a 'jure soli' country (usually New World) while the father (and later mother) is still a citizen of the Old country...

It is estimated that Argentina alone has 18 million latent Italian citizens...

Do you know any more about the Kaman case? I googled it and there wasn't much detail.... I'll have to look in the German press. I am very curios  of the route he took, I wonder if his grandparent had to flee or if he is just a descendant of an expat.

by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:59:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe you can answer something that has puzzled me: how does one distinguish between people of German ancestry and Austrian ancestry? It doesn't seem to relate to the bounds of the Habsburg Empire, as a lot of the Ostsiedler are presumably from there (and the Sudetendeutsche have become German). Can all Austrians also become German as well, if they want to?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Aug 21st, 2008 at 10:15:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Until fairly recently anybody of German ancestry from the old East Bloc could become a German citizen automatically and qualify for benefits as a 'Spaetaussiedler", i.e. with Vertriebene status. That was changed in the late nineties I believe. Very few of the Vertriebene ended up in Austria. All the ones from the Ostgebiete went to either the Federal Republic or the DDR. The vast majority of the Sudeteddeutsche ended up there as well.
by MarekNYC on Thu Aug 21st, 2008 at 10:25:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But is that just from the East bloc, or anybody of German ancestry? And does the law specify exactly what German ancestry means, or do they just include all Austrians, assuming that nobody will bother to take advantage of it?

Some immigrant writer (I forget the name) once wrote a novel about an Iraqi, whose looks were more Western than most Arabs, who decides that he's a descendant of the Crusaders, and tries to claim German citizenship on the basis of these laws...

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Sat Aug 23rd, 2008 at 04:57:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yeah, about 6-7 years ago when I first swam in the Med, I had this very strong sense of ancestral memory. It was like, "I remember this!" And at that moment I said to myself, "How do I move over here?" This was before I knew that I qualified for recognition...
by gioele (gioele(daught)sandler(aaaattttt)gmail(daught)kom) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 12:52:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I believe you need to have a grandparent that was a citizen of the European country in question in most cases. I don't qualify.

Adding up the pluses and minuses, I don't think I'd last very long in the UK or Germany, the only European countries I have at least token familiarity with. The reasons I disliked living in Boston are similar to the problems I'd have with the UK. Now if you replaced Londoners with folks from Northern England, that might be workable.


you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Wed Aug 20th, 2008 at 01:27:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
... Congolese passport ... I've never checked ...

... OTOH, I'm not sure if a DRC passport "counts" as a second passport. Not like an EU passport or an Ozzie passport or a Canadian passport or a Kiwi passport or (perhaps the rarest of second passports), a Japanese passport.

Maybe 1 and a possible claim for a half of one?

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Thu Aug 21st, 2008 at 06:37:45 PM EST

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