Demographic Implications of Median Jewish Fertility Rates

Median Jewish mass Aliyah (immigration) to Israel in the tens of millions will enable Israel to redeem and enfranchise the entire Judea and Samaria. The question then is at what volume of Median Jewish Aliyah will Israel realistically be able to apply sovereignty to the entire Judea and Samaria?

It needs to be emphasized that the average fertility rate of Median Jews in the Middle East is substantially lower than that of Israeli Jews and Palestinians in Israel and in Judea/Samaria. The basic demographic criterion is that the ratio between Jews and Palestinians in Israel will need to at least remain unchanged, meaning that the proportion of Palestinians among Israel’s citizens should not increase. However, considering that Median Jews in the Middle East live in countries with fertility rates that are mostly lower than those of Israeli Jews and Palestinians in Israel and Judea/Samaria will the difference in fertility rates need to be taken into consideration when deciding the timing of Israel redeeming and enfranchising Judea and Samaria. One option would be for Israel to wait until most of the Median Jewish Diaspora has immigrated to Israel before applying Israeli sovereignty to the entire Judea and Samaria.

Fertility rates, average number of births per woman in the Middle East

Iran: 2.15

Iraq: 3.60

Judea/Samaria Palestinians 3.20

Lebanon: 2.08

Israel: 3.01

Syria: 2.77

Turkey: 2.06

In addition there are Median Jews in Africa; Maasai (Kenya and Tanzania), non-Christian Igbos (Nigeria) and fertility rates are 3.42 for Kenya, 4.83 for Tanzania and 5.32 for Nigeria.

The largest population of Median Jews are Alevis in Turkey and Turkey has a relatively low fertility rate of 2.06. This means that it may be safer to wait with applying sovereignty to the entire Judea and Samaria (and thus giving Israeli citizenship to the Palestinian population there) until the vast majority of Median Jews have immigrated to Israel. Most Median Jews will be extremely eager to immigrate to economically highly developed Israel. Turkey, where the largest demographic concentration of Median Jews is located is relatively economically developed but ethnic, religious and political tensions between Muslims and Alevis means that Alevis are already now eager to emigrate from Turkey. It should also be kept in mind that there is a demographic time bomb in Israel in form of the 200 000 strong Bedouin population in the Negev and who have a high fertility rate.

Median Jewish Aliyah can be expected to be very rapid and intense and there is no question that demand for Aliyah will be greater than Israel’s capacity to integrate new immigrants. Most Alevis of Turkey will be ready for instant immigration to Israel once this becomes possible, but it is impossible for Israel to rapidly provide housing, jobs, education and health care for what is estimated to be a population of some 15 million Alevis. Alevis will therefore likely immigrate to Israel at a pace where they will find jobs and housing in Israel and so it may take 10-20 years before most Median Jews are ingathered to Israel. However, redeeming and enfranchising the entire Judea and Samaria will most certainly become demographically possible far earlier than that.

Published by Daniella Bartfeld

Daniella Bartfeld is the founding director of the Aliyah Organization

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