Photo: Shaul Golan
Survey shows most Israeli Jews support Reform and Conservative movements (archives)
Photo: Shaul Golan

Most Israeli Jews want gov't to consider Diaspora Jewry in its decisions

Survey shows 51% of Jews in Israel believe non-Orthodox movements should be given equal status in matters of conversion and marriage.

A large majority of Israeli Jews want the government's decisions to consider Diaspora Jewry, according to a new survey conducted ahead of the first Jewish Media Summit held in Jerusalem this week.



The poll was carried out by the Israel Democracy Institute in cooperation with the Government Press Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Jerusalem and Diaspora Affairs, the Ministry of Tourism and KKL-JNF in a bid to better understand the Israeli Jewish public's views towards Diaspora Jews.


The survey found that 62% of Israeli Jews believe Jews in Israel and the Diaspora share a common fate, while 35% disagree. Sixty-percent of Israeli Jews believe that the Jewish people in Israel are a nation separate from the Jews abroad, while 36% disagree with this claim.


When asked to choose what defines the primary connection between Jews in Israel and Jews in the Diaspora, a plurality of respondents selected Jewish culture and tradition (40%), followed by Jewish religious law (18%), Jewish nationality (13%), anti-Semitism (13%) and blood relations / genetics (6%). Seven percent believe that all options equally define the primary connection.


Keeping up with Diaspora

Eighty-one percent of Israeli Jews are interested to know what’s happening with Jews in the Diaspora, while 18% are not interested.


According to the survey, Israeli Jews receive the majority of their information regarding Diaspora Jewry from television (56%), the Internet (51%), newspapers (51%), family members or friends abroad (39%), radio (30%), family members or friends in Israel (23%) and their own trips abroad (16%).


Priorities of world Jewry

When asked to select which of the following issues is most important for world Jewry to make its top priority, a plurality stated assimilation in the Diaspora (29%) followed by anti-Semitism (24%), a strong connection to Israel (13%), influencing local politicians on issues related to Israel (9%), the BDS movement (6%) and financial support of Israel (5%). Nine percent of respondents believe that all of the objectives are of equal importance.


Israeli government and Diaspora

Seventy-one percent of Israeli Jews think that the government of Israel, when making important decisions, should take into consideration how the decision will influence the situation of Jews in the Diaspora, while 26% do not think it is necessary.


Fifty-one percent of Israeli Jews think that the government of Israel, when making important decisions, should take into consideration the viewpoints of Diaspora Jews, while 47% do not think it is necessary.


When asked to state in which, if any, of the following ways they favor Israeli government support for Jewish communities in the Diaspora, 62% of Israeli Jews said they favor sending emissaries (shlichim) from Israel, 42% support the physical defense of facilities and people, and 39% back financial support for Jewish communal activities.


Ten percent of respondents oppose support by the government of Israel for Diaspora Jewish communities.


Non-Orthodox Religious movements in Israel

Fifty-one percent of Israeli Jews believe that the Conservative and Reform movements in Israel should be given status equal to that of the Orthodox movement in matters of conversion and marriage, while 43% do not believe the other Jewish denominations should be given such status.


Fifty-two percent of Israeli Jews oppose allocating government funds to Reform and Conservative communities and rabbis, while 40% support such a move.



Despite all of the other matters of importance on the agenda of the Israeli government,

91% of Israeli Jews believe that aliyah of Jews from around the world to Israel is an issue of importance, while eight percent do not believe that aliyah is an important issue.


This survey, conducted on May 8-11, 2014, included 477 respondents who constitute a representative sample of the adult Jewish population of Israel. The maximum measurement error for a sample of this size is ±4.6%.


פרסום ראשון: 06.27.14, 21:56
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