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    Israel – Demographic Superpower

    Israel – Demographic Superpower

    The demographic argument against Israel is overstated. Contrary to what commonly is believed, the non–Jewish population in the West Bank is not growing so rapidly that Israel’s Jewish majority is threatened:

    Respected Israeli demographer Yoram Ettinger wisely warns: “Beware of Palestinians Bearing Demographic Numbers.” His data indicate that the PCBS has inflated the number of West Bank Arabs from 1.6 million to 2.5 million. 

    Its estimate includes more than 400,000 overseas residents, the double counting of Jerusalem Arabs, under reporting of Palestinian emigration, and exaggerated birth statistics. But Palestinian distortions are catnip for Zionist “demographers of doom.”

    Ettinger’s calculations indicate that Jews now comprise 17% of the West Bank population. Between the Jordan and Mediterranean, 66% of the population is Jewish. Ever since 1995, Arab birth rates have stabilized while the annual number of Jewish births has risen significantly. “There is a demographic problem Ettinger recognizes, “but there is no demographic machete at the throat of the Jewish state.”

    There are other reasons why Israel should reach a territorial compromise in the West Bank, but the demographic threat is not the first among them.

    Going beyond that, Israel may actually be the demographic superpower in the region. So argues this article, Israel as Middle Eastern hegemon:

    Like the vanishing point in a perspective painting, long-term projections help us order our perceptions of what we see in front of us today. Here’s one to think about, fresh from the just-released update of the United Nations’ population forecasts: At constant fertility, Israel will have more young people by the end of this century than either Turkey or Iran, and more than German, Italy or Spain.

    The article includes this chart:

    A growing demographic power which recently has discovered enormous oil and natural gas reserves.  Now all Israel has to do is survive.


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    ben david | June 23, 2011 at 4:47 am

    If the territories are annexed, the Squatters become Israelis, and get food, medical care, etc… that causes the population to start to grow
    – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
    Not any more. Decades of Pali violence have taught Israelis that annexation without repatriation is a dead end – in fact we have already seen terror attacks by Israeli Arabs, under the influence of the “peace” process and intifadas.

    The likely scenario now is Israel large, sparsely populated areas of the West Bank in response to Pali attack, or unilateral declaration of Pali statehood.

    Remaining pockets of Pali population will be even worse off economically than before – and Israel will likely accelerate its settlement activity. Many Palis will likely choose emigration or repatriation to Jordan.

    The other option you propose:
    The other side of it is Separate Statehood, with the ability to engage in commerce with the surrounding countries (even though currently in economic turmoil) will still lead to a rising standard of living
    – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
    Well, no. It will lead to the corruption and resulting poverty that are endemic to the Arab world.

    And it’s likely that European and Arab donor states will use statehood as an excuse for cutting aid – leaving Palestine with little resources or capital. Federation with Jordan – another beggar state – would merely spread the misery.

    And again – the likely Israeli response will be annexation of sparsely populated areas, which includes agriculture and water resources.

    – – – – – –

    It’s increasingly clear that the demographic threat is a bugaboo. In every likely scenario, time is on Israel’s side.

    Milhouse | June 27, 2011 at 2:42 am

    Any Israeli annexation of Judea and Samaria would not come with automatic citizenship for their Arab residents. The assumption that Israel must forever apply jus soli has no basis; plenty of European countries don’t grant automatic citizenship just for being born there, so there’s no reason Israel must. Arab residents of annexed territories can keep whatever citizenship they had before (or remain stateless persons with white passports as before), and be treated as legal aliens, with the same rights that legal aliens have in the USA and the EU: i.e. the right to live peacefully so long as they obey the law, but subject to deportation if they commit a crime or engage in hostile activity.

    If I were Israeli PM I would also divert half the budget which is devoted to encouraging overseas Jews to immigrate, into a parallel program to encourage local non-Jews to emigrate. Any non-Jew who is a legal resident or citizen of Israel, and who is willing to emigrate, would be eligible for a yeridah package equal in value to the aliyah package granted Jewish immigrants. Jewish Agency offices overseas, in addition to their current job of recruiting Jewish immigrants, would be turned into absorption agencies for non-Jewish emigrants, helping them settle in to their new countries and their new lives.

    That should take care of the so-called “demographic problem”.

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