Mapping the Relationship between Israeli State Agencies & World Jewry
Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People:
The legitimacy of the State of Israel is rooted in the idea that Israel is the nation-state of the entire Jewish people. Consequently, the Reut Institute asserts that Israel's connection with the Jewish World should be defined by the Government of Israel (GOI) as a matter of national security. However, in the last few years, the gap between Israel (both at the governmental and societal levels) and World Jewry has widened to the point of endangering the role of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.
The erosion of this relationship presents a major threat to Israel's national security. Israel's connection with the US is one of the building blocks of Israel's national security concept and relies heavily on the Jewish community’s commitment to and support of Israel. Jews in the US are at the frontlines of the battle against the assault on Israel’s legitimacy and the boycott movement. Accordingly, the Kotel Crisis is not just a struggle for progressive Judaism in Israel but a matter of national security.
The State of Israel must formulate a strategic framework towards World Jewry, from which the policy of the GOI will be derived. Today, no such strategy exists and the relationship with World Jewry is not being treated as an issue of national security. Reut's conclusions about the current situation are as follows:
There is no coherent and clear national approach regarding this issue, not to mention one which regards the relationship with World Jewry as one of Israel's most strategic assets, as it should. This relationship is essential for maintaining Israel's legitimacy, and could be critical to its survival in the long run.
Israel has no clear policy on major issues affecting World Jewry; therefore, these issues are addressed on an ad hoc basis and are often dictated by narrow political interests. This dynamic is destructive to the connection with World Jewry. Israel's policy is effectively the sum of arbitrary and uncoordinated activities of the different GOI branches.
The connection with World Jewry is not on the agenda of most Israeli government branches, even if some of their activities have a significant impact on World Jewry.
Public sector officials are not being trained to understand this issue and appreciate the significance of the connection with World Jewry. The training that exists today does not deal with the questions of Zionism or treat Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.