Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Will Rising Terror and Antisemitism Push American Jews to Israel?

Zeev Elkin speaking at Menachem Begin Heritage
Center, 2nd Night Chanukah. (Photo by Batya Medad)
Last night at the Begin Prize Ceremony in Jerusalem, Zeev Elkin predicted that rising international antisemitism will bring the annual aliyah rate back up to what it was over twenty years ago, when the USSR opened the gates just before its collapse.

American Jews have always pooh-poohed such talks touting the USA as a bastion of freedom and tolerance and safety for Jews. They've done this for over a century totally ignoring the difficulties of Jewish Sabbath observers, the fact that FDR barred Jews fleeing Nazi Germany from entering the states, the public state-supported Xmas displays, the difficulties in getting Jewish Holidays off from work, the communities that barred Jews and now the officially sanctioned pro-Palestine sic groups in universities and the rise in Arab terrorism in mainland USA.  You're invited to add more in the comments.

I'm among those who has no doubts that things will only get worse in the United States of America. That is for the very simple reason that academics all over the states, and the world, all accept and teach that the State of Israel replaced an Arab "country" called Palestine sic and that only this Arab "people" sic has a legal and moral right to be here. They consider us invaders and occupiers. This is taught as "history." It is mainstream and not relegated to places considered antisemitic. Even Jews cooperate with this pseudo-history.

So, when I see an article like the news report in The Algemeiner that the brave student who protested an anti-Israel rally being let off, I'm not relieved.
University of Michigan student Jesse Arm
 confronted fellow students who put up
 an anti-Israel display on campus.
Photo: Twitter.
Ethics Committee Clears Jewish Student Who Confronted Anti-Israel Demonstrators on Michigan CampusThe student government’s ethics committee at the University of Michigan unanimously voted on Sunday not to take disciplinary action against a Jewish student who was under investigation for challenging anti-Israel demonstrators on campus, The Algemeiner has learned.
The Central Student Government (CSG) Ethics Committee released a report concluding that sophomore and CSG representative Jesse Arm “did not engage in unethical behavior or engage in conduct unbecoming of a representative.” The decision was made after the committee heard testimonies from all involved parties and reviewed footage of Arm confronting the protesters.
I kept going through the article looking for a hint that the Central Student Government (CSG) Ethics Committee had considered the anti-Israel demonstration unethical, but I came up empty. And that has me worried. While ordinary Americans, like the salespeople I meet in my trips to the states who want to know why I don't have a charge account in their stores are excitedly pro-Israel, the more academic and upper classes are on a greased slide towards the worst antisemitism possibly ever seen in America.

The question is if American Jews will recognize the signs or keep making excuses...


Netivotgirl said...

Superb post Batya. Sadly, many Americans (and Europeans like my sis-in-law in France) want desperately to make aliya but they are unable to financially having no prospect of employment here. (Her son came on a pilot trip last year for 2 weeks. There is NO Nefesh b'Nefesh in France.) In the USA many those with comfortable lives are wary of giving up their lives of ease in their 'safe' conclaves (ghettos?). Others like a dear friend of mine and her husband had to remain in the USA to take care of both Mothers who are Holocaust survivors. They purchased an apartment in Jerusalem but NONE of their 7 children live here. **sigh** So I believe, sadly, that although numbers will rise, we will NOT see a tremendous upswing in aliya. May I be proved strong. May Hashem bless you for keeping such important issues in the public eye!

Batya said...

NG Gd willing they will come and it will work out.

Anonymous said...

I live in galus in a tiny liberal leaning Orthodox community. I can honestly say that 95% will never make Aliyah. They have good/important jobs and nice houses and are very comfortable. There is denial of the seriousness of what is occurring in the world. Recently the government opened 4 refugee centers in our area - 2 within walking distance. Muslims are everywhere. My husband is trying to tell them to carry mace and to come up with an emergency plan in case we are attacked in shul on Shabbat. One attack in shul while we are davening will wipe out the entire community. He was roundly pooh-poohed and advised by someone on the board that "all of those people are good people just like us - not the crazies" Needless to say we filled out our application on NbN and are counting the months. We are not wealthy. My husband just got laid off his job. We really don't know what we'll do once we get there but we trust that if Hashem can sustain us in galus He can sustain us in Israel. We know i won't be easy.


CR said...

If Trump is voted into office, he may usher harsher measures against Leftists, Muslims, Atheists, and Stuff.

American Jews are grappling with that Sad fact: they cringe at watching Muslims being tested existentially

Usually, Americans are challenged with supporting the underdog, but, with much of this Generation failing textually, only a severe separation will bring Greater Clarity to a Bloody Battlefield

Europe can no longer test Israel in its ignorance either because they are realizing that Islam isn't compatible: it's unholy

Perhaps it's because it's winter that such a Holy War lacks emotion, but that's what happens when Greater Israel is neglected; it wouldn't be wise to go skiing upon the Golan, at this time, for example;

There's not much you can do under Lockdown, but cast your cares on the Worlds. The West fears Martial Law, but as you should know by now, Asherism requires Greater Care, otherwise Greater Constriction IS imposed, due to Incompetence, if any.

Egypt realizes that it is in peril, and is reaching out to Israel, for speedy assistance, in the gaseous department; if anything, that's what American Jews can expect: to embody relief, in the absence of Cities of Refuge east of the Jordan

Anonymous said...

The challenge for the IDF will be to straddle Sinai-Aza and the Golan, basically: Greater Flexibility is required, then

Anonymous said...

also, why so much emphasis on America, when there are millions perhaps tens of millions elsewhere

Yeshayahu in chapter 19 pretty much sums up how to proceed: be cordial with People, work diligently with your hands, and maintain your heritage

Batya said...

Emunah, please be in contact and b'hatzlachah! Good luck, great success!
CR, who knows?
a's are you one or many?
I write more about America, because it's the country I know the best after Israel.

HDG, Yerushalayim, E"Y Shlemah said...

Actually, Anon 8/12/15 21:11, I don't know what you mean "why so much emphasis on America, when there are millions perhaps tens of millions elsewhere" - what millions? Who are you referring to?

So far, America has the most known Jews anywhere in the world, except maybe Israel. Most nations have up to maybe hundreds of THOUSANDS at most.

Batya said...

CDG, good answer thanks.

Yakov Butterfield said...

Jews are given a choice; either become Torah Jews living in Eretz Israel or die out as a individual and a community. According to the Pew Research Institute http://www.pewforum.org/2013/10/01/jewish-american-beliefs-attitudes-culture-survey/ there is a 79% intermarriage rate, 67% of Secular Jews are not raising their children Jewish, 70% of children that didn't receive a Jewish education (ie, went to public schools) ultimately intermarried. In comparison, of those that attended a Orthodox Jewish Day school or Yeshiva until grade 12 - 2% intermarried. Jews are not having children: with a Jewish Fertility Rate of 1.4 (Replacement is 2) and Jews are now older;
the majority of Jew in the US are now over 55. What is really interesting is the Age Distribution among Jews of stead of being a bell curve it is flatly distributed. Compare 2007 to 2014 http://www.pewforum.org/2013/10/01/jewish-american-beliefs-attitudes-culture-survey/
% of Jews who are ages…
------ 18-29 30-49 50-64 65+ Sample Size
2014-- 22% 27% 26% 26% 825
2007-- 20% 29% 29% 22% 664
If many American Jews are abandoning Israel it has more to do with their weakening sense of Jewish peoplehood, as reflected in the 2013 Pew Survey, The Jewish population in the Diaspora is either making Aliyah or dying out. Those Jews that still live in the Diaspora will convert to anything else to hide their Jewishness; http://www.breslev.co.il/articles/breslev/baal_shem_tov_and_students/under_the_tzaddiks_wing.aspx?id=28016&language=english.
"...both her parents had assimilated, hiding any signs that led to their Jewish birth and background...." Remember the Spanish Expulsion of 1492 and the Marranos Jews .

Batya said...

Yakov Butterfield, thanks for all the information. I can see the intermarriage rate rising among my own American family, and it is now second generation. Many are lost completely to Judaism.

Mr. Cohen said...

How am I supposed to feel enthusiastic about making aliyah when hundreds of thousands of Israeli-born Jews who speak fluent Hebrew and served in the IDF live in North American and Europe, and 99% of them have no intention of returning to Israel any time in the foreseeable future?

I cannot afford to buy an apartment in Israel, and I have no relatives or close friends there. If I made aliyah, I would be stuck in a situation with insufficient money, no friends, no relatives, and not able to speak conversational Hebrew.

Last but not least, my very-sensitive nerves would not survive even one terrorist incident, or even worse, the Israeli bureaucracy. I would be almost as helpless as a lost child.

Batya said...

Mr Cohen I have never been able to understand the yordim excuse for not making aliyah. We have celebrated 45 years since making aliyah and celebrate 45 years here. I have no doubt our lives in chul would have been harder and worse.

Anonymous said...

Exactly what are you celebrating? Daily attacks lottery? Yordim were angry at Kapo type bureaucrats backed by same all on Diaspora raised monies reaching israel many corrupt agencies
Go ahead and ask them. Fighting the cause is useless when the fighters are mean, egocentric machers. I can understand religious making aliya because they don't care about above blocs.
They come at all cost.

Batya said...

I'm here 45 years, and I don't see and experience what you're ranting about.

in the vanguard said...

Re: your statement,
"I'm among those who has no doubts that things will only get worse in the United States of America",
a distinction must be drawn:
The situation may well tailspin in deterioration, but that, in and of itself, does not necessarily bode ill for Jews.
My impression is, going on the recollection that the Rebbe said that America shall be a land of Chesed until Moshiach comes,
which makes sense because so many Jews live here and Jewish presence is what gives America is superpower attainment,
the situation may bring hardship but - not religious persecution, not that anymore. Religion the world over for Yidden is practice as you have the freedom to do. That option for worldwide Jewry was not always viable. Today thank God it's different, probably because we are quickly approaching Geulah.

So I beg to differ with your thought. True the screws are being tightened for Jews to pack up and leave for Eretz Yisrael, but this merely reflects the Geulah in operation in high gear - thank God. The screws are being applied in Sweden big time, in much of Europe to be sure, but okay - how else do you want Hashem to send them the message - by Whatsapp?

The government in power now in America, that sick liberal junta, will have to die. My personal opinion why Hashem installed that reprobate in the White House, was to finally wean secular Israelis off their constant screaming "We need America; We need their military support; We need their financial help!", all the while regarding America as their savior. So Hashem saw fit to put a stop to that foolish thought. Hashem thus forces these Jews to realize we need only Hashem!

The next administration, hopefully Trump, may relieve the burden of all those monkeywrenches already thrown into the works by this regime, and all those monkeys thrown into the human resources infrastructure and educational system.

I think that because the Geulah may well spin out of a situation Jews found themselves in during the original days of Purim. Achashverosh and the Jews got along. Jews held high powerful positions. Plus - there was democracy! His was the first democracy in the world.

The Rebbe points out that yearning for the Geulah in a time of beneficence for Jews is a higher level that wanting it under oppressive rule. Democracy is a good test background against which to do tshuvah. However, if the Jews stray, ch"v, the screws indeed may tighten a bit.

Moshiach now - with mercy and astonishingly fast!

Batya said...

Van interesting comment thanks. Jews learn the hard way.