Daily Israel Report

'No Arab Demographic Time Bomb,' Say Experts

Yoram Ettinger and Mark Langfan debunk demographic threat; current trend leads to 80% Jewish majority in Judea, Samaria by 2035.
By Ari Yashar
First Publish: 4/9/2014, 12:02 PM

Yoram Ettinger speaks at AFSI meeting
Yoram Ettinger speaks at AFSI meeting
Adrienne Price

At a packed Americans For a Safe Israel (AFSI) meeting that was held at AFSI National Chairman Mark Langfan's Manhattan home last Wednesday, former Ambassador Yoram Ettinger and Langfan debunked the "Arab demographic time bomb" claims used to pressure Israeli withdrawals.

"There is no machete at the throat of the Jewish state, there is no Arab demographic time bomb; there is in fact a very well documented Jewish demographic tail wind," argued Ettinger, noting the fallacy of claims asserting Israel must withdraw to the 1949 Armistice lines to maintain a Jewish majority.

Ettinger added that Jewish fertility rates are at their highest since the founding of the modern state of Israel, while Arab fertility rates are at their lowest; additionally, he noted a net emigration of Arab residents is contrasted by a net immigration of Jews.

According to the former ambassador, the current 66% Jewish majority "in the combined area of Judea, Samaria and pre-'67 Israel is trending upward." He estimated an 80% Jewish majority in the region by 2035.

Langfan spoke after Ettinger, explaining the strategic importance of Judea and Samaria on topographical maps.

Noting Ettinger's population research estimating 1.7 million Arab residents of Judea and Samaria as compared to the inflated statistics of 2.7 million, Langfan reiterated that EU Parliament President Martin Schulz's claims before the Knesset in February of a Palestinian Authority (PA) water shortage were simply contrary to the facts. Indeed, the numbers prove local Arabs receive more than sufficient water per capita.

Langfan added that the argument positing that Israel would give up Judea and Samaria but maintain control of the area's airspace was detached from reality, noting the impossibility of the notion of a Palestinian state not possessing sovereign airspace.

Additionally, Langfan touched on the repercussions that the founding of a Palestinian state would have on the demographic issue.

Given the PA demand to "return" descendants of Arab residents who left Israel in 1948 at the founding of the state, if the PA was given a state it would bring millions more Arabs into the area, argued Langfan.

If the IDF ever had to reinvade Judea and Samaria following rocket attacks on Tel Aviv, "it would reinvade a Judea and Samaria with 4 million Palestinians instead of 1.7 million Palestinians," he stated.

"'Peace' and a Palestinian state actually make the Arab demographic threat to Israel exponential," concluded the AFSI chairman. A graph of the hypothetical demographic threat presented by two alternative timelines, either maintaining the status quo or withdrawing from Judea and Samaria, can be seen here:

'Demilitarized' Palestinian state Mark Langfan
A full house for the AFSI meeting Adrienne Price