In 2006, there were approximately 300,000 non-Jews living in Israel, most of whom made aliya under the Law of Return, which grants automatic citizenship to anyone who is Jewish or who has a close relative (parent or grandparent) or a spouse who is Jewish. Each year, this population produces an average of 3,000 offspring, according to the ministry.
Growing up as a non-Jew in a Jewish state is not necessarily simple. Ira, 23, says that she did not reveal to anyone that she was not Jewish.
"I didn't want them to attach any connotations to me being a non-Jew. My father's mother (who is Jewish), while she was alive, never liked my mother (who is not Jewish) and they always fought. She always called my mother 'that non-Jew' or something of the sort. I never wanted that for myself so I never told anyone when I was growing up," she says.
keyboard shortcuts: V vote up article J next comment K previous comment