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October 20, 2014 / 26 Tishri, 5775
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Second Generation Israeli-Americans Twice as Likely to Intermarry

The intermarriage rate doubles for second generation Israeli-Americans, according to a recent survey.
Man holds daughter on shoulders at Pro-Israel Rally

Man holds daughter on shoulders at Pro-Israel Rally
Photo Credit: IAC website

The Israeli-American Council commissioned a study of Israelis living in America.  While not surprising, the results are also not reassuring for those who believe Jewish continuity is a value.

The rate of intermarriage for the children of Israelis who are living in America is 17 percent, which is more than double the rate of their parents’ generation, which was eight percent.

The study, titled, “Israelis and Israeli-Americans Living in the United States: Perceptions, Attitudes and Behavior,” surveyed some 1,660 Israelis in 40 U.S. states. It concentrated on two different cohorts of Israelis living in America: those who have lived in the U.S. for less than ten years, and those who have lived in the U.S. for more than ten years.

Midgam, an Israeli polling company, conducted the survey, with assistance from the Israeli government and several Israeli-American organizations.

The survey also provided information about the Israeli-American demographics. The largest segment of this population – 44 percent – are between the ages of 35 – 44, with the second largest – 20 percent – between 16 – 34 years old. Only 11 percent are older than 65, while 15 percent are between the ages of 45 – 64.

Fewer than half of all Israeli-Americans send their children to Jewish day schools, the survey found. There is an increasing -though only slightly – greater chance that children of Israeli-Americans who have been in the U.S. for a longer period of time will not attend day schools.

In terms of denominational affiliation, The Israeli-American Council survey found that of the roughly 50 percent of Israeli-Americans who regularly attend synagogue, 44 percent attend Orthodox synagogues.

For the remaining Israeli-Americans who attend synagogue, membership is roughly evenly divided between Conservative synagogues – 24 percent, and Reform synagogues – 22 percent.  However, for those Israelis who have lived in the U.S. for more than ten years, there is a substantial increase in the percentage attending Conservative synagogues – 33 percent, with only 17 percent attending Reform synagogues.

The Israeli-American Council‘s goal is to “organize, activate and engage” the more than half a million Israeli-Americans living throughout the United States.

About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.


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10 Responses to “Second Generation Israeli-Americans Twice as Likely to Intermarry”

  1. Moshe Zucker says:

    Very sad indeed. Time to come home

  2. Elaine Fox says:

    It’s sad but not surprising. It’s true for every immigrant group

  3. The true religion of the US is materialism.

  4. Gideon Jones says:

    Remember when Israel put out those videos warning against this, and then all of the already intermarried American Jews freaked out and got them to retract it?

    Yea, once again the emotional idiots chased truth out of the marketplace of ideas as everyone loses.

  5. Millie Kashuk says:

    I recently read "THE PEW REPORT" called "The Vanishing American Jew."……
    It is on Jewish identity and is a wake up call for all of us…….
    It can be read on line and I strongly suggest reading the report….

  6. It looks like most still go to synagogue and observe the faith, so if intermarrying couples do the same, that's a good thing, right? If the fear is that somehow a genetic purity will be lost through intermarriage, it's too late for that. The only genetically pure people were Adam and Eve, and they carried the genetics of every man, woman, and child on earth. We all share that blood. Even aboriginal tribes carry that blood even though they've never mixed with outsiders for thousands of years. But for most of us, we're a mix of multiple ethnic groups even if we don't know it. Muts make the best dogs anyways.

  7. Sima Thales says:

    Same situation that in Germany before WW2

  8. Kay Sonia says:

    I am russian Jew from Israel. Jewish women cant find Jewish men here in Brooklyn. Not to many good Jewish men , Jewish men in Brooklyn most of them dating NOT Jewish women. Most of them are Asian, Russian, and other. So women want family and children and is no Jewish men!!! Than she is going out with Italians or Irish men. what can we do???

  9. Les Legato says:

    You are aptly named.

    Jewish law forbids marriage between a Jew and a non-Jew, because intermarrieds children invariably abandon their grandparents faith.

    Stop worrying about blood like Hitler did and concentrate smoking less dope.

  10. Les Legato, I suggest you read what people say rather than making assumptions about people based on their names (the name is a reference to making the most out of a bad situation. once a plague of locusts have eaten everything in the fields, you turn the lemons to lemonade, from famine to feast). Again, as long as the family observes tradition, what is the problem? But if it's forbidden to marry a non-Jewish person, then that's the end of the argument, isn't it? I guess that means Kay Sonia should try really hard to convert a Brooklyn gentile or try harder to meet a nice, Jewish guy, which leaves Les out of the running. I admit my ignorance of Jewish law and most other things, but I try to mind my manners. Sorry if my ignorance offended you, Les.

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