The vast majority of Israelis believe it is time for Jews in the Diaspora to come home, according to a new survey conducted by the Center for Jewish Impact together with the Geocartography Knowledge Group on Israel-Jewish Diaspora Relations.
Researchers found that nearly 82 percent of those surveyed believe Israel is the safest place in the world for Jews today, and “therefore Jews should make Aliya to Israel,” The Jerusalem Post reported Sunday. The figure is higher than it was in 2020, when 76.2 percent of respondents answered the same way.
Although Israeli respondents said it was important for Diaspora Jews to come to Israel, 66.5 percent said until they do, Diaspora Jews should not get involved in Israeli affairs since they do not live in the Jewish State.
Nevertheless, 58.8 percent of respondents agreed the Diaspora serves as Israel’s first line of defense against those who are hostile to the country.
Moreover, 61.4 percent of respondents expressed concern that changes to Israel’s Law of Return would jeopardize Israel’s relationship with Diaspora Jewry. When that statistic was broken down further, it was found this belief is significantly weaker among male Orthodox Jews, and haredi-religious respondents.
Israelis have yet to reach a firm conclusion on how Diaspora Jewry will respond to the new Netanyahu government: 48 percent believed the relationship will be more distant, with that belief stronger among secular and higher income respondents. But 52 percent believe that is not the case: 23.6 percent were certain the relationship will grow closer, and 28.4 percent believe the relationship will not change either way – a belief stronger among Orthodox Jews and haredi-religious Jews.
“Our findings offer a valuable perspective on the complex dynamics between Israel and the Diaspora and underscore the importance of strengthening this relationship,” CJI Chairperson Robert Singer said in a statement to the Post.
“The rise of global antisemitism has only heightened the belief that Israel is the safest place for Jews, and therefore Israel should facilitate Aliyah and not hinder it by amending the Law of Return,” he said.
The survey, conducted online with 500 Israeli Jews ages 18 and up, was carried out in the last week of 2022.