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Young American Jews increasingly hostile towards Israel, says Jewish Agency CEO

Human rights activists hold banners as they protest against Israel's occupation on Palestine in New York, US on 25 October 2017 [Volkan Furuncu/Anadolu Agency]

Young American Jews are increasingly turning away from Israel, the Jewish Agency CEO has warned, viewing “the Jewish state as antithetical to their liberal values”, reported Haaretz.

Speaking in what the paper described as “uncharacteristically blunt terms for an official in his position”, Alan Hoffman said the trend was “extremely worrisome”.

According to Hoffman, the solution is to “encourage young Jews not only to engage in Israel advocacy and in defending Israel – those are all important things – but also to have them accept the legitimacy of challenging Israel”.

The senior official made the remarks while “addressing a conference sponsored by the Israel Democracy Institute on Israel’s relations with Diaspora Jewry”, said Haaretz.

Hoffman cited a recent study showing “that support for Israel among Jewish college students in the United States had dropped 32 percent between 2010 and 2016”.

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“In the year since Trump was elected, the situation has only been exacerbated”, Hoffman said. “Jewish student college students in the United States, not including those who are Orthodox, see Israel, justifiably or not, as something opposed to their basic liberal and progressive values”.

The growing rift between Israel and American Jewry in general, according to Hoffman, was “like nothing we have ever seen before”.

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