Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Report: World Jewish Population Nears Pre-Holocaust Level

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Report: World Jewish Population Nears Pre-Holocaust Level

Article excerpt

JERUSALEM * The world's Jewish population has grown to be nearly as large as it was before the Holocaust, an Israeli think tank said in its annual report Sunday.

The Jewish People Policy Institute said there were currently 14.2 million Jews in the world. When factoring in people with one Jewish parent and others who identify as partially Jewish, the figure approaches 16.5 million the Jewish population on the eve of World War II. The Nazis and their collaborators killed about 6 million Jews in the Holocaust.

The report said the rise has been due in part to natural growth, mainly in Israel, which has about 6.1 million Jews and one of the Western world's highest fertility rates.

But it also linked the growth to "changing patterns of Jewish identification." It said that 59 percent of adults in the U.S. who have just one Jewish parent now identify as Jewish, a majority "for the first time in memory."

Avinoam Bar-Yosef, the institute's president, said more of those Jews were probably identifying as Jewish because it is more "respectable" to be Jewish in the U. …

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