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Meir Warns American Jews of Dangers of Assimilation

July 17, 1972
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Premier Golda Meir has warned American Jewry of what she called the “dangers of assimilation and intermarriage.” The Premier told the opening session of the Zionist Organization of America’s 75th jubilee convention that she viewed the issues as seriously as she did the existence and security of Israel itself. She challenged the ZOA and other American Zionists: “Are you certain that your children and grandchildren will remain Jews?”

Mrs. Meir said, “I dread the verdict of history on this generation if, given the opportunity which the State of Israel’s existence provides to strengthen the Jewish people, we fail. There could be no greater tragedy than this. . .The big question is: Can Jewishness flourish in free societies? We now see that not only through hatred and oppression can the number of Jews be diminished, but also through love and freedom.”

The solution, Mrs. Meir said, was an intensive Jewish life in the diaspora, with Israel, Hebrew education and aspiration to aliya as its central features. “Must Israelis and American Jews understand each other only in translation?” she asked.

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