In an op-ed article a member of J Street’s Rabbinic Cabinet once again drags up the “demographic” threat of the Arab birthrate as a reason Israel must rush to a peace agreement, however flawed and however unfit the partner. The supposed demographic time bomb has failed to materialize despite being brought up repeatedly since the 1970s. As reported in articles in these pages, the ratio of Jews to Arabs has remained constant both in the pre-1967 Auschwitz borders of Israel and within the parts of the land of Israel currently controlled by Israel. Jerusalem has maintained an overwhelming Jewish majority without change since its liberation. What is true is that the Jews of Judea and Samaria [the “west bank”] have one of the highest birthrates in Israel. The Arabs consistently wildly inflate their population numbers, despite a declining birthrate. Also, a staggering number of Christian Arabs have emigrated from areas under the control of the Palestinian “Authority.” (If Christians don’t want to live under their control, would anyone imagine Jews would want to?)
What is the real demographic threat? An independent Arab state within the land of Israel. This entity will be flooded by third-generation refugees fleeing the squalor of the Arab hospitality of their hosts and seeking the relative prosperity next to Israel. Then – and only then – the land of Israel will have millions more Arabs seeking even more living area while shooting missiles at Jewish women and children.
While no one can doubt the sincerity of support for Israel on the part of this rabbi, he should not use the misinformation of the “demographic threat” to promote his ideology-at-any-cost, Arab-supported, J Street organization.