Israel's Designs To Neutralize Palestinian Demographic Advantage
24 July 2015
By Khalid Amayreh
Israeli leaders and strategists readily admit that the Palestinian
demographic growth in mandatory Palestine (between the Jordan River and the
Mediterranean) constitutes an existential long-term peril for Israel and
It is widely believed that within this proscribed geographical area
(mandatory Palestine), Palestinian population is either equal or will soon be
equal to the Jewish population.
In fact, some reliable Jewish demographers have argued that there are already
more Palestinians than Jews in Israel proper, the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Israeli officials adopt dismissive tactics to downplay and underestimate the
clear Palestinian advantage.
This includes scandalously manipulating statistical data such as dividing the
Arab population mass into numerous categories and sub-categories.
Thus, the Palestinians are Israeli Arabs, Palestinians, Christians, Muslims,
Bedouins, etc., while the Jewish population is treated as one mass despite
the fact that hundreds of thousands of Jews are not considered bona fide
Jews, either because they are not Orthodox or because they fail to prove they
have Jewish ancestry.
More to the point, the bulk of the estimated 450,000 residents are counted as
Jews in most Israel censuses when in fact these people are neither Arab nor
This segment includes some 346,000 individuals, who are neither Jewish nor
Arab but classified as "other," a category that includes about 4,000
Circassians, 3,000 Armenians, 1,000 Samaritans, perhaps 5,000 African Hebrew
Israelites, several thousand Roma and Vietnamese, plus about 335,000 or
430,000 people who appear to be immigrants, mostly Russians, who entered the
country under the Law of Return (which includes anyone with a single Jewish
grandparent) but are not considered Jewish, along with various foreign-born
spouses of Israeli Jews.
Indeed the fact that these people are counted in the Jewish population
enables Israeli officials to claim that Israel still has a Jewish majority.
It must be recalled, though, that the Israeli government does not actually
formally view them as Jews, especially in light of the ascendancy of
right-wing and ultra-religious parties to power in Israel.
The scandalous manipulation of scientific data ought to be viewed as no more
than a desperate attempt on the part of the Zionist establishment to produce
an artificial assurance that things are alright and that Jews would continue
for many years to come to be an overwhelming majority in Israel.
A few weeks ago, an Israeli journalist asked me if I thought that the
demographic issue reached an irreversible point. I referred the journalist to
data and projections by Israeli demographers.
I told him rather tersely that only Israel was capable of defeating Israel at
this point of time and that Israel was actually doing this job quite
effectively on behalf of the Palestinians.
The journalist asked me to elaborate. I told him that things were crystal
clear and needed no more clarification or elaboration.
Here are the numbers (updated since 2013):
Palestinian Arabs, West Bank: 2,720,940
Palestinian Arabs, Gaza Strip: 1,802,387
(Total Palestinians, Israeli military-administered territories: 4,523,327)
Israeli Arabs (citizens): 1,680,800
Total Arabs under Israeli sovereign administration: 6,204,127
Israeli Jews: 6,120,100
Read more: http://forward.com/opinion/184245/jews-now-minority-in-israel-and-territories/#ixzz3ftHbL3V2
Reducing the size of the Palestinian family
Israeli officials are boasting about their success in reducing Palestinian
birth rate in Israel proper into five children per household.
However, it is clear that this dimension ought to be viewed as a minor
textual detail rather than a contextual reality.
Israeli officials realize this fact, but always seek to manipulate facts to
reassure themselves and to make the Israeli Jewish public feel better.
It is generally true that a higher standard of living and a higher level of
education often lead to a lower birth rate. But it is also true that these
two factors make it harder for the Israeli state to marginalize the Arab
community as this community is reasserting its national credentials,
especially in the face of rising trends of Jewish racism and fascism.
As to the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, where the hard mass of the
Palestinian population exists, the prevailing abject poverty is contributing
to maintaining the current high birth rate. Indeed, within a few years, the
combined population of the two regions will reach the five-million figure.
Israel hopes that hard economic conditions facing Palestinians in the two
areas will force many young Palestinians to leave for good, thus alleviating
the "demographic peril" for Israel.
However, it is clear that 90% of Palestinian expatriates in Saudi Arabia and
other Gulf states maintain their residency rights and never sever their
umbilical cord to their homeland.
There is no doubt though that Israel is adopting every conceivable nefarious
tactic to get as many Palestinians as possible to immigrate.
The main Israeli tactics to achieve this criminal strategy are focused on
making the daily life of every Palestinian unbearable, so much so that
Palestinians would contemplate leaving the country for good.
The enduring Nazi-like blockade of Gaza, the policy of narrowing Palestinian
horizons in the West Bank, and cutting off the two regions from each other,
are only examples of what Israel is doing to make Palestinian life unbearable
and force as many Palestinians as possible to leave.
Moreover, the existence of a notoriously corrupt Palestinian Authority (PA)
that consciously or otherwise carries out Israeli designs doesn't militate
against paramount Palestinian national interests.
That is why Palestinian national forces ought to concentrate their efforts on
expediting Palestinian steadfastness in order to enable our people to
withstand Israeli pressures and PA stupidity.
More draconian measures foreseen
There is no doubt that Israel will not sit idle and watch the Zionist
enterprise being overrun by Palestinian demography. In the final analysis,
Israel is too cunning and too evil to allow the forces of nature to reverse
or undo this enterprise.
Indeed, Israel could eventually embark on the unthinkable to safeguard
Zionism from what would appear as ultimate historical demise.
That is why the Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims and their friends must enlist
every effort to make "the unthinkable" even more unthinkable.
But this is easier said than done. This is why Palestinians ought to utilize
their finest brains for the purpose of devising and preparing a strategic
salvation plan with historical proportions. This plan must make sure that the
blunders of the past are not repeated and that no excuses are given to Israel
to embark on Nazi-like policies, including mass expulsion of our people from
their ancestral homeland.
Khalid Amayreh is a Palestinian journalist and current affairs political
commentator living in Occupied Palestine