Leikanger just isn’t Jewish, a fact which has sparked outrage in Israel, a country that is jewish since its inception has fought to possess its Jewish character recognised throughout the world

By Erica ChernofskyBBC Information, Jerusalem

Intermarriage – when Jews wed non-Jews – was known as a threat to your future survival of the nation that is jewish. So what took place whenever there have been reports that the Israeli prime minister’s son ended up being dating A norwegian non-jew?

The Norwegian daily Dagen a week ago reported that Norwegian Sandra Leikanger and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s son Yair are a definite couple, to that the workplace of Mr Netanyahu has answered – in accordance with Israeli news – by insisting these are typically just college classmates. However the damage has already been done.

Leikanger just isn’t Jewish, an undeniable fact which has sparked outrage in Israel, a country that is jewish since its inception has battled to have its Jewish character recognised throughout the world. While Judaism is not a proselytising religion, Leikanger, like any non-Jew, does have the option of converting need she wish to become Jewish.

Intermarriage and assimilation are quintessential Jewish fears and have now been called a hazard to the future survival of the relatively tiny Jewish country. According to law that is jewish the religion is passed down through the mother, so if a Jewish guy marries a non-Jewish girl, their children would not be considered Jews.

The opportunity that kiddies of a couple that is mixed keep or transfer any Jewish traditions to future generations is radically diminished. As today’s price of intermarriage among Diaspora Jews appears above 50%, many are concerned that the nation that survived persecution, pogroms therefore the Holocaust could sooner or later die away from its undoing.

The anxiety was expressed in an open letter to Yair Netanyahu by the Israeli organization Lehava, which works to prevent assimilation, in a post on its Facebook web page, which warned him that their grand-parents “are turning over inside their graves they failed to dream that their grandchildren wouldn’t be Jews”.

The problem of intermarriage has mainly been one for Diaspora Jews real black singles dating site review – the Jews whom reside outside Israel. Inside Israel, Jews (75% of the populace) and Arabs (21%) rarely marry, however with an influx of foreign workers and globalisation for the Israeli community, in modern times the occurrence has come to light.

“God forbid, if it’s real, woe is me,” says Aryeh Deri, leader of this Ultra-Orthodox Shas party, to a regional radio section, lamenting the news that the prime minister’s son had been dating a non-Jew. ” I do not like dealing with private problems but then it’s not any longer a personal matter – it’s the sign regarding the Jewish people. if it is true God forbid,”

The popular Israeli satirical television show, aired a parody showcasing infamous historical oppressors of the Jews including the biblical Pharaoh and the Spanish inquisitor over the weekend, Eretz Nehederet. The show culminated with Yair Netanyahu’s non-Jewish girlfriend, who they called the “newest existential threat”. She sang about a shikse, a non-Jewish girl, sarcastically crooning that she is “worse than Hitler”.

But jokes apart, perhaps the prime minister’s brother-in-law, Hagai Ben-Artzi, spoke away strongly on their affair, warning their nephew that if he does not end his relationship with Leikanger, it really is as though he’s spitting regarding the graves of their grandparents.

“From my viewpoint, if he does anything, i know will not allow him to obtain near their graves,” he told an Ultra-Orthodox site. ” This is the many awful thing that is threatening and had been a risk through the entire history of the Jewish people. More awful than making Israel is wedding having a gentile. Should this happen, God forbid, We’ll bury myself I do not know where. We’ll walk in the roads and tear down my hair – and right here that is happening.”

Whoever’s watched Fiddler on top, where Tevye states his child is dead to him for marrying a non-Jew, understands the issue has become an one that is sensitive Jews.

But Dr Daniel Gordis, a writer and specialist commentator on Israel and Judaism, claims which has changed in the previous few years, specially into the Diaspora Jewish community.

Whereas when it was significantly frowned upon for the Jew of any stream to marry a non-Jew, today, among unaffiliated (no synagogue), non-denominational (people who don’t identify with any movement), conservative or reform Jews, it is really not the taboo it used to be. The intermarriage rates of non-denominational Jews approach 80%, he states.

But among Orthodox Jews and in Israel, it is still a lot more controversial.

“It’s not really a racial issue, it’s not a superiority problem, it isn’t a xenophobia problem,” he says, describing that we now have two good reasons for the opposition to intermarriage, one of which is it is just forbidden in Halacha, or law that is jewish.

“The other thing is that Jews attended to observe that the only way that is real transfer powerful Jewish identity to their children is to allow them to be raised by two Jewish parents. Kids raised by one Jewish moms and dad and one non-Jewish moms and dad do have more tepid, more delicate, thinner Jewish identities than their Jewish parents did.

“they have been statistically more likely to marry non-Jews. There’s no guarantee, but statistically it’s extremely difficult to make a child using the exact same sense of Jewish passion that the older generation has if he’s raised by somebody who does not share that tale.”

The effect, he adds, is in the us, ” there exists a sense that is rapidly eroding of dedication, a complete collapsing of Jewish literacy, and a thinning of Jewish identity”.

Therefore Israelis are petrified, says Rabbi Dr Donniel Hartman, head regarding the Shalom Hartman Institute of Jewish studies, because since intermarriage is really so rare here, whenever an Israeli marries a non-Jew they notice just as if he is making Judaism.

” When you’re a tiny individuals and you lose your constituents it certainly makes you quite stressed. We have been 14 million Jews within the global world, that is it,” he describes. ” just What’s changed in modern life that is jewish of Israel is the fact that a Jew marrying a non-Jew doesn’t necessarily mean making Jewish life anymore.”

This is a brand new event in Judaism, and Hartman claims Jews must rise to your challenge.

“The battle against intermarriage is really a lost battle. Our company is a folks who are intermarried – the problem is perhaps not how exactly to stop it, but how to contact non-Jewish spouses and welcome them into our community,” he says.

“Our outreach has to be better, our organizations have to be better, our Jewish experiences have become more compelling, we must start working much harder.

” staying in the contemporary globe requires you to be nimble. Things are changing, I don’t know whether it’s for the even worse or otherwise not, which will depend about what we do. Nevertheless the world is evolving, and we need to evolve with it.”