web analytics
November 27, 2014 / 5 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



The Forecast For Jerusalem

     The Israeli government and the Jerusalem municipality cancelled the ceremonies last Wednesday marking the fortieth anniversary of the unification of the city in the Six-Day War. A sudden thunderstorm hit the city in the late morning and early afternoon. With several of the capital city’s neighborhoods paralyzed under the torrents of rain and hail, the government and Jerusalem’s city hall chose to cancel the celebrations rather than risk having the participants washed away.

 

      The late spring rainstorm was nearly unprecedented in the city’s meteorological history. And, given its rarity, the symbolism was impossible to miss. The Olmert government, like the Sharon government before it, has made little effort to hide the reality that maintaining Israeli sovereignty over the entirety of the eternal capital of the Jewish people is not a priority.

 

      Indeed, under the Sharon and Olmert governments the city has been effectively partitioned by the security fence that has cut off several outlying Arab neighborhoods from the rest of the city. Last year, Olmert told European leaders outright, “Not all the Arab neighborhoods will be part of the city in the future.”

 

      The government claims its decision to cut off Tzur Baher, Jebl Mukaber, Isawiya and Abu Dis from the capital is based on demographic considerations. It argues that placing these Arab neighborhoods outside the city’s boundaries will strengthen the city’s two-thirds Jewish majority in the long term.

 

      The government’s determination to divide the capital city is based on faulty population data published by the Palestinian Authority and expanded on by the Israeli demographic establishment, which is dominated by Hebrew University Prof. Sergio Della Pergolla.

 

      In advance of this year’s Jerusalem Day, Della Pergolla and the EU-funded Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies with which he is affiliated published two demographic surveys which claimed that unless Israel splits the capital and transfers the Arab areas of the city to the Palestinian Authority, by 2020 the Jewish majority in the city will have dwindled to 60 percent and by 2035 Jews will become a minority in the city.

 

      The findings published by Della Pergolla and the JIIS were analyzed by the independent American Israel Demographic Research Group. Led by American economist Bennett Zimmerman and Ambassador Yoram Ettinger, AIRDG found that the studies were based on a deterministic interpretation of Jewish emigration and Arab immigration rates to the city.

 

      AIRDG began its analysis by noting that following a multi-year trend of increasing Jewish fertility rates and decreasing Arab fertility rates in the city, in 2005 the Arab and Jewish birthrates in Jerusalem converged. Arab and Jewish women in the capital city both have an average of 3.9 children.

 

      If current trends continue, over time, the Jewish fertility rate can be expected to outstrip the Arab fertility rate in the city. This is also the case in the greater Jerusalem metropolitan areas that are experiencing the same multi-year fertility trends.

 

      The AIRDG report, which was released on Jerusalem Day, made clear that in light of the fertility parity the issue of Jerusalem’s demographic trends is now limited to an assessment of the durability of the current inverse Jewish and Arab migration rates. Lack of land for development in the city has caused a housing scarcity and an economic crunch. This state of affairs is causing Jews to leave the city. In 2005, some 6,300 Jews, or 1.4 percent of the Jewish population of the city, migrated out. Notably, the Jews who leave Jerusalem do not leave the metropolitan area but rather settle in the city’s western and eastern suburbs.

 

      At the same time, Arab immigration to the city has resulted in a small increase in the capital’s Arab population. There are two central causes for increased Arab immigration into the city. First, Arab residents of the city receive child welfare allowances and unemployment insurance payments from Israel’s National Insurance. Second, the construction of the security fence has induced thousands of Arabs, who do not wish to live under the Palestinian Authority, to relocate to the city.

 

      On the first issue, it should be noted that the level of welfare paid to Jerusalem residents and to Israeli citizens as a whole is a question of government policy preferences. As a direct consequence of the welfare reforms instituted by Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu during his tenure as finance minister, which among other things decreased per child allowances, Arab fertility rates dropped in Jerusalem and countrywide.

 

      The availability of land for municipal development, and the issue of Jewish emigration, which the current scarcity of land has caused, is also a question of government policy preferences. As the AIRDG report notes, the security fence aggravates land scarcity by placing vast tracts of Jerusalem’s land reserves outside the city’s truncated boundaries. Far from encouraging Jews to migrate to Jerusalem, the security fence that divides the city encourages Jewish emigration by raising real estate prices still further.

 

      By removing Arab neighborhoods from the city’s boundaries, the security fence was supposed to decrease the number of Arabs in the city. Yet the opposite has occurred. As the AIRDG report points out, since 1967, 35,000-40,000 Arabs had left Jerusalem for adjacent neighborhoods in Judea and Samaria. The erection of the security fence reversed this trend.

 

      Since construction began, 30,000 of these former Jerusalemites have moved back to the city. Another 13,000 Arabs who live in neighborhoods that the security fence placed outside the city have relocated into Jewish and Arab neighborhoods inside the fence.

 

      So – perversely – the demographic argument used to justify the city’s partition is actually causing the Arab population to increase dramatically inside of the portions of the city that Olmert and his government colleagues wish to retain under Israeli sovereignty. Moreover, the government and the leftist demographic establishment’s determination to maintain the city’s Jewish majority by partitioning the city is limiting space for metropolitan expansion, raising real estate prices within the city’s boundaries and encouraging Jews to leave.

 

      AIRDG notes that Jews comprise a 72 percent majority of Jerusalem’s greater metropolitan region located within the security fence. Within the entirety of Jerusalem’s metropolitan corridor – which includes areas to the east, north and south as well as west of the city – Jews make up a solid 66 percent majority. Were the entire metropolitan area brought within the city’s boundaries, the current migratory patterns would be reversed.

 

      Arabs, no longer in fear of being transferred to PA rule, will stop inundating the city. With the land scarcity problem solved by the wide expansion of the city’s boundaries, real estate prices would drop and Jews would return to the city in appreciable numbers.

 

      The rainstorm on Jerusalem Day could not have been prevented. But what the AIRDG report shows conclusively is that whether the long-range forecast for the eternal capital of the Jewish people is dark or sunny is far from preordained. The future of Jerusalem is in the hands of the Israeli government and of the Jewish people as a whole.

 

      Caroline Glick is deputy managing editor of The Jerusalem Post. Her Jewish Press-exclusive column appears the last week of each month.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “The Forecast For Jerusalem”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Border Police keep an eye out for Palestinian Authority terrorists.
IDF on Manhunt for Arab Terrorists Trying to Gun Down Jewish Drivers
Latest Indepth Stories
Greiff-112814-Levaya

My son is seventeen; he didn’t want to talk about what happened, or give any details of the Rosh Yeshiva’s words of chizuk.

Protesters in Ferguson, Missouri

All involved in the Ferguson debate should learn the laws pertinent to non-Jews: the Noahide Laws.

Charley Levine

Prominent Jewish leaders acknowledged that their predecessors had mistreated the Bergson Group.

Cravatts-Richard--new

Abbas has been adding new layers of rhetoric to his tactical campaign to de-Judaize Jerusalem

The Jew’s crime is his presence.

Hamas’s love for death tried to have as many Palestinian civilians killed as possible

Israel recognizes the fabrication called a Palestinian nation; So what do we want from the Swedes?

Arab attacking Jews in the land date back a century, long before Israel was created or in control.

Creativity without clarity is not sufficient for writing. I am eternally thankful to Hashem for his gift to me.

Golden presents a compelling saga of poor but determined immigrants who fled pogroms and harsh conditions in their homelands for a better life in a land of opportunity.

It seems to us that while the Jewish entitlement to the land of Israel transcends the Holocaust, the Jewish experience during that tragic time is the most solid of foundations for these “national rights.”

Too many self-styled civil rights activists seemed determined to force, by their relentless pressure, an indictment regardless of what an investigation might turn up.

Unfortunately, at present, the rabbinate does not play a positive role in preventing abuse.

Egypt’s al-Sisi is in an expansionist mood. He wants Israel’s permission to take over Judea and Samaria.

More Articles from Caroline B. Glick
Abbas

On November 24 Palestinian Authority Chairman and Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled to meet Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal in Cairo.

Last week at the UN, President Obama did something he had never done before. He discussed Israel and the Palestinians without once attacking Israel. He didn’t blame Israel for the absence of peace.

Imagine if 100 million Americans participated in the Tea Party movement. And then imagine that the movement had no impact on American politics. Finally imagine that in the wake of the Tea Party movement, Republicans embraced President Obama’s positions on spending and taxation.

According to Israel Army Radio, Prime Minister Netanyahu has offered to extend the moratorium on Jewish property rights in Judea and Samaria for an additional three months in exchange for Jonathan Pollard’s freedom. That is, if Obama pardons Pollard, who has served 25 years of a life sentence for transferring classified documents to Israel, then Israel will agree to extend the ten-month moratorium on Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria, due to expire next week, for another three months.

According to Israel Army Radio, Prime Minister Netanyahu has offered to extend the moratorium on Jewish property rights in Judea and Samaria for an additional three months in exchange for Jonathan Pollard’s freedom. That is, if Obama pardons Pollard, who has served 25 years of a life sentence for transferring classified documents to Israel, then Israel will agree to extend the ten-month moratorium on Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria, due to expire next week, for another three months.

In a much discussed article in the current issue of The American Spectator titled “America’s Ruling Class,” Prof. Angelo Codevilla describes the divide between those who run the U.S. – the politicians, bureaucrats and policy establishment – and the rest of the country.

In a much discussed article in the current issue of The American Spectator titled “America’s Ruling Class,” Prof. Angelo Codevilla describes the divide between those who run the U.S. – the politicians, bureaucrats and policy establishment – and the rest of the country.

Iran is on a winning streak. As it sprints towards the nuclear finishing line, it finds itself – and its allies and clients – being wooed by one and all. In contrast, Israel has never been more isolated.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/the-forecast-for-jerusalem/2007/05/22/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: