Israeli: ‘No Future’ for U.S. Jews

By Rebecca Spence

Published November 17, 2006, issue of November 17, 2006.

While Israeli politicians showed up in record numbers this week at the annual assembly of North American Jewish charitable federations to laud the Jewish community for its fundraising efforts and to emphasize global Jewish unity, one top Israeli official took the occasion to insult Diaspora Jewry.

On the eve of the 75th annual General Assembly of United Jewish Communities, Ze’ev Bielski, chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel — one of two main recipients of the $340 million-plus raised by the federations’ Israel Emergency Campaign — told The Jerusalem Post that American Jews had “no future.”

“One day, the penny will drop for American Jews and they will realize they have no future as Jews in the U.S. due to assimilation and intermarriage,” Bielski said.

At a press conference here during the assembly, Bielski defended his statements, saying they had been taken out of context. “There was no intention to minimize the role of the Jewish federations,” he said, adding that he hoped to deepen the charities’ involvement in Israel.



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