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Reform, Assimilated Jews Want Voice in Israeli Affairs

Disapora Jews want to vote in Israel. They do not, however, want to make aliya or serve in the IDF
Reform Wedding (illustration image).

Reform Wedding (illustration only).
Photo Credit: Serge Attal / FLASH90

Reform Jews and a left-wing Israeli journalist said Israel must bow to Palestinian terror,  sanction non-halachic “Judaism” and give foreign Jews a vote in Israeli state matters or risk abandoning their support.

According to a report issued Wednesday by the Jewish People Policy Institute, Diaspora Jews believe the words “democracy” and “Judaism” are interchangeable synonyms. Democratic values are considered “Jewish values.”  Thus, actions that erode Israel’s democratic values are seen as detrimental to Judaism and to the definition of Israel as a Jewish state.

Diaspora Jews also feel Israel must ends its “control” over the Palestinians, presumably by abandoning sections of the Land of Israel, in order to maintain Israel’s democracy. However, the report does not mention the possibility that the PLO, led by Holocaust denier Abu Mazen, does not actually want peace, but rather aims to keep foreign aid money flowing via farcical “negotiations” with Israeli leaders.

The report also fails to mention the historic and religious Jewish connections to the places Diaspora Jews are only too happy to let go, as well as the fact that less than five percent of Jewish tourists to Israel visit the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron, Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem or Shilo, the ancient home of the mishkan before the Holy Temple was built by King Solomon.

Democracy. Regardless of the Facts

The report also notes that although Diaspora Jews recognize the fact that Israel faces challenges that do not always allow the country to follow Jeffersonian democratic principles, they don’t really care. Author, journalist Shmuel Rosner also fails to mention inconvenient statistics, such continued Palestinian Arab emigration from Judea and Samaria, as well as the significant drop in Palestinian Arab birthrates in recent years. According to demographer Yoram Ettinger, these factors have led to an increase for the Jewish majority in the Land of Israel over the past decade.

“It is clear that many Diaspora Jews recognize the difficulties and constraints Israel faces given the regional hostility and security threats. At the same time, the majority does not consider this reality, and the fact that Israel’s neighbors do not adhere to principles of democracy and human rights, as justification for lowering the high values bar Israel is expected to maintain,” the report says.

Notably, the 139-page report in Hebrew does not mention the words “aliya” or “immigration”. This is presumably because Rosner did not want to offend Diaspora Jews who prefer to express their Zionism by putting spare change in blue Jewish National Fund tzedakah boxes and with annual checks to local Jewish federations.

Instead, Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State: Perspectives from World Jewry asserts “the right of Diaspora Jews to express their views on issues being decided in Israel was a central topic of discussion,” as well as a demand that Israel consult with Diaspora Jews “on a regular basis” because Israeli policies and actions have an impact on the wellbeing of Jews around the world.

It should also be noted that the report does not include, either by Israeli authorities or Diaspora Jews, to draft Jewish teenagers from outside Israel to serve in the IDF, or to perform volunteer national service.

Lastly, the report includes a Diaspora demand that Israel abandon civil standards governing the functions of state. Couched in terminology about the Orthodox “monopoly” over Jewish life in Israel, Rosner appears to support the isolation of a majority of Israelis who want to live their lives in accordance with basic halachic standards. Instead, he proposes “giv(ing) equal standing to all Jewish streams” on civil matters such as marriage, divorce and conversion.

Instead, Rosner apparently prefers Israeli state support for intermarriage (no longer even a matter of contention for non-halachic streams of “Judaism”, as well as the breakdown of divorce standards that will avoid a future problem of mamzerim, or children born from adulterous unions. A vast majority of Israelis would prevent their children from marrying these individuals.

About the Author: Meir is a news writer for JewishPress.com - and he loves his job.


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18 Responses to “Reform, Assimilated Jews Want Voice in Israeli Affairs”

  1. Eruv rav! Sonei Yisrael!

  2. Want a voice in Israel, then go and live there. Then you can have a say . Remember the State of Israel has given the Jews a homeland, we have a place to call home and pg, will not have another holocaust. Remember, you were a Jew, before Hilter cared where you were born. Protect Israel as best you can

  3. dont give in.israel you be long to most people a round the world..dont let some terr minded mess with your mindssssssssssssss

  4. Kari Anne says:

    There are many of “us” Diaspora Jews who love Israel, and stand by her. I am an American, an Army Veteran, and I am so ashamed of our present Administration’s views towards Israel. Kerry has NEVER been pro Israel, and with our President’s view towards Israel, I fear what the next few years will bring for Israel.

  5. Nicely written by Meir Halevi Siegel and all too accurate!

  6. naturally…we have that right too!

  7. Donny Reich says:

    Thank you for your support Sandy. Here in Israel we do so much more than give money to Israel charities and say that we "would" give our lives for Israel.

    Here in Israel, we LIVE Israel. We don't just give money to charities here, our income taxes go here, our property taxes go here, our sales taxes go here. When I get a parking ticket, that is money that goes to support Israel. I contribute to Israel's society and economy. I am a part of the land and the people and the state, I don't sit from afar.

    You "would" give your life for Israel, but 2,500 + Israeli's already have given their lives for Israel. And we all send our children to put their lives on the line for Israel. Giving our lives for ISrael is not just theoretical over here, we DO IT!

  8. Donny Reich says:

    Dan Silagi that is the silliest comment I ever heard. Reform jews are more than welcome to make aliyah. There is freedom of religion for ALL Jews and all people. I wish the that every non-Orthodox Jew in American (and Orthodox Jew too) would make Aliyah. I don't know where you got the notion that I think otherwise.

    My issue is with the liberal Jews who are critical of Israel who do NOT live here. Frankly, I have more respect for the reform and other non-Orthodox jews who DO live in Israel, then the Orthodox ones who live in America.

  9. Donny Reich says:

    Dan Silagi , don't write us any checks, we don't need your support.

    And for the record I do not live in a settlement. So far, this is the second false assumption you made about me. But if I did live in a settlement, it would still technically be a part of the land of Israel (you can't change history), and it would still be legal.

  10. The Reform Jews and the left-wing Israeli journalist who advocate this nonsense sound like a bunch of crazy people. It is a pity that Meir Halevi Siegel has been kind enough to waste his time on reporting about them and their "ideas."

    I must add that I am a diaspora Jew, but not even under torture would I support the BDS. I have loved and supported Israel in every way open to me since the State was reborn in 1948.

  11. Donny Reich : I would give your comment 10 "likes" if I was allowed to. Thank you.

  12. Dan Silagi : Aha, 15% of the population does not a theocracy make. 15%, and yet you write that Israel is the haven for "just" the ultra-orthodox. Who and what are the other 85%? Ordinary Israelis who love living in their democratic Jewish State. Your unclear thinking, Dan, does you and your university an injustice. You write as though you resent your financial support of Israel if you do not perceive yourself as getting anything in return. Do you only give to get? That's not the Jewish way, is it? If you disapprove so much of the country that is our haven, why support it? Just support the local Catholic church instead. They will embrace you, their "captured" Jew.

  13. Donny Reich says:

    Dan Silagi , you are free to reject halachic law. The state of Israel is NOT a halachic state, and contrary to what you said, does NOT adhere to halacha. Another one of your complaints about the state debunked.

    You also complained about a lack of religious freedom – there is total religious freedom here, far more than any other country in the middle east. Your complaint about giving a rabbi thousands of dollars for a for a huckster is pure fiction. I was born in the US, and did not need to pay anyone to certify that I am Jewish, nor did any other olim that I know (from a variety of backgrounds).

    You continue to make fictional complaints about Israel, shows either ignorance or hatred (or perhaps both). You have maybe had 1 constructive comment among all your rants here. What are you trying to accomplish?

  14. Dan Silagi says:

    I don't consider Haredim to be "my own people." I have about as much in common with Satmar as I do with Martians.

  15. Dan Silagi says:

    Jacob L Driesen I have something to say to you, you pompous ass. Two words. Guess what they are?

  16. Uzi Kattan says:

    Dan Silagi The worst Jew haters often are of Jewish descent and Silagi shows it.

  17. Dan Silagi says:

    Uzi Kattan Because I'm not an Obama-hating birther POS like you, asshat?

  18. The liberal Jewish religion is destined to become a global religion. Because our incorporea and ethical Deity is real. But the Bible is not a divine work.

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