Israel and American Jewry: Oslo and Beyond
Publication Date: January 2008
Publisher(s): Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
Author(s): Steven Bayme
Series: In Changing Jewish Communities, no.28 (15 January 2008)
Special Collection: Berman Jewish Policy Archive
Keywords: Diaspora Relations; Israel Advocacy; Israel Attachment; Assimilation
The author argues that the Oslo years and the promise of Arab-Israeli peace led to a recalibrating of relations between Israel and world Jewry. The collapse of the Oslo process "resecuritized" the agenda of Israeli-Diaspora relations. Israeli spokespersons argued that a strong Jewish community in North America was vital to preserving Israeli security; however, Diaspora assimilation threatened to undermine Israel's position within American society and public opinion. He concludes that without a critical mass of Jews ideologically committed to make the case for Israel, U.S. Middle Eastern policy could become like the policies of European democracies.