Israelis Feel Less Connected to State

May 19, 2008

A comprehensive survey published Sunday by the Guttman Center revealed that the number Israeli Jews who feel like they are a part of Israel has hit a new low a mere 60%.

The survey, which looked into issues of social solidarity and feelings of identifying with the State, went on to indicate that only 48% of Israeli ages 18 to 30 identify with the state, and only 46% of all former Soviet Union immigrants want to continue living in Israel.

The data, said the Guttman Center, is concerning; especially in comparison to the figure from three decades ago: In 1979, 85% of Israeli Jews felt they were a part of the country, and while the numbers have fluctuated slightly over the years, the new figure 60% - is alarmingly low.

The decline, said the center, was evident is all sectors polled, but the sharpest decline was noted among the ultra-Orthodox community only 42% said they felt a part of Israel.

As for living in Israel or immigrating abroad, 70% of Israeli Jews said they want to live in Israel; but only 46% of former USSR immigrants want to do the same. Among the 18-30 sector, said the Guttman Center, 63% want to continue living in Israel.

Our comment:

As far as the question of Zionism and anti-Zionism, the data about "feeling a part of Israel" may not be very significant. A person could be a Zionist, wanting a Jewish state, yet not feel comfortable with the current form of state and its behavior.

However, there are very significant statistics here about the number of Israelis who would like to leave the Zionist state. If these people achieve their goals of leaving, we could see the Jewish population of the Zionist state declining over the coming decades, as the Arab population continues to rise. Eventually the Arabs could dominate the state demographically, bringing a peaceful end to Zionism.