Israel’s Minister of Education Rafi Peretz likened intermarriage with "Holocaust" adding that due to inter-marriages in the last 70 years, the Jewish community “lost 6 million people.”
Israel’s far-right Minister of Education Rafi Peretz said during a cabinet meeting that the rate of intermarriage among the U.S. Jewish population is “like a second Holocaust,” according to a report by Axios news outlet published Tuesday.
According to Axios, the comments were made during a July 1 cabinet meeting where Dennis Ross, the chairman of the board of the "Jewish People Policy Institute" was giving a talk on trends in the Jewish community around the world, especially in the United States.
The briefing included the growing rate of marriages between Jews and non-Jews in the U.S. to which Peretz, the former chief rabbi of the Israeli army, said that the assimilations are like one of the worst periods of human history i.e., the Holocaust. He also added that due to inter-marriages in the last 70 years, the Jewish community “lost 6 million people.”
Minister of Energy Yuval Steinitz differed on the point and said that assimilation is not the critical problem and added, "First we need to stop disregarding and looking down on Jews in America [U.S.] that see themselves as Jews not only religiously but even more culturally and historically.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his main concern is the growing number of Jews in the U.S. drifting away from traditions which represents the growing rupture between the conservative right-wing parties and society of Israeli and the U.S. Jewish community which is much more liberal and do not identify with the former.
A recent U.S. State Department report on religious freedom revealed that Jewish people in Israel are concerned about religious freedom in Israel. They are worried about the exclusive control over marriage, divorce, and burials by the Orthodox Chief Rabbinate and the non-recognition of the Reform and Conservative denominations.