by Ze'ev Jabotinsky
The PLO's successful psychological warfare has created deterrence among Israelis by disseminating lies about the unrealistic number of Arabs in Judea and Samaria.
Over the weekend, a billboard scare campaign was launched, featuring an Arabic sentence that translates as "Soon we'll be the majority."
Despite the impression that this is a campaign by Hamas or the PLO, it turns out the message actually comes from Commanders for Israel's Security (a group of retired security agency officials that promotes diplomatic-security arrangements). Former Mossad head Danny Yatom told the media the campaign was designed to "stir up awareness that if we don't separate from the Palestinians, they will soon be the majority in the land between Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea, and Israel will cease to be a Jewish, democratic state."
The campaign rests on a pile of lies from the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics. The demographic balance Yatom and his friends are trying to use to frighten the Israeli public actually favors Jews, not Arabs. In the past, people have warned about the future threat of Jews becoming a minority in their own country. Back in 1898, Zionist thinker Simon Dubnov opposed Theodor Herzl's vision of a Jewish state, arguing that by the year 2000, no more than half a million Jews would be living in Israel. Israel's first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, was also faced with a prediction by experts, led by statistician Professor Roberto Baki, who warned against declaring the establishment of the state because, by the early 1960s, there would be an Arab majority in Israel.
We don't yet have the final numbers for 2016, but we do for 2015, which show that 6.7 million Jews were living in Israel then, compared with some 1.75 million Arabs inside the Green Line and a similar number in Judea and Samaria -- some 3.5 million Arabs in total. That's a clear two-thirds majority for the Jews, to start with. That same year, the average birth rate among Jews in the western part of Israel caught up to that of the entire Arab population, both within and beyond the Green Line. We are seeing a decline in the Arab birth rate, not only in Israel, but in most Islamic countries, alongside an unusual and steady increase in the birth rate among the Jewish population of Israel, mainly because of the increasing secular Jewish population.
The demographic situation is the opposite of what Yatom and his buddies are warning us of. More than a year ago, the trend reversed itself, meaning that the Jewish population will continue to grow, even leaving out immigration, which only bolsters the Jewish majority. Every year, over 15,000 more Arab residents leave Judea and Samaria than arrive, while 20,000 more Jews immigrate to Israel than leave it.
The PLO's successful psychological warfare has created deterrence among Israelis by disseminating lies about the unrealistic number of Arabs in Judea and Samaria. It's very sad to see good people who used to command a vital system making use of the PLO's data, and in doing so become mouthpieces for psychological warfare against us by inculcating false numbers from an unreliable count. They seem to be doing it for political reasons.
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