05:24 PM 10:24 AM EST JAN 30, 2023 JLM 51°F
Why is Arab demography Westernizing?

Yoram Ettinger is an expert on Middle East affairs and Jewish-Arab demography. Here, he explains why the Arab population in Judea and Samaria experienced the most growth during Israel’s full control of the area.

In defiance of Israel’s critics and conventional wisdom, the highest-ever Arab population growth rate in Judea and Samaria occurred during Israel’s full control of the area (1967-1992).


Photo: Walla News

Thus, from the end of 1967 (586,000 people) until the end of 1992 (1,050,000 people), the Arab population of Judea and Samaria expanded by 79%, compared to a mere 0.9% growth during the 1950-1967 Jordanian rule.

The unprecedented Arab population growth rate was the outcome of the unprecedented Israeli development of health, medical, transportation, education, and employment infrastructure in Judea and Samaria, following the stagnation during the Jordanian occupation of the area. 

In addition, Israel offered employment opportunities, in its pre-1967 core, to Judea and Samaria Arabs, who preferred working in Israel to the faraway Arab Gulf states, West Africa or Latin America.

As a result of the enhanced infrastructure (especially health and medical), Arab infant mortality was drastically reduced – and life expectancy surged – almost to the Israeli level. Furthermore, emigration was substantially curtailed due to new opportunities for employment and higher education.

Hence, while net emigration during the 17 years of Jordan’s control (1950-1967) was 28,000 annually, it subsided to 7,000 annually during the 25 years of Israel’s full control (1967-1992).

Photo: Nziv.net 

The exceptionally high Arab population growth rate, during Israel’s full control of Judea and Samaria, was highlighted by the 170% growth of the 25-34 age group, which is the bulk of emigration. That they stayed attested to the unprecedented development of employment opportunities for Arabs by Israel.

Compared to an Arab population growth rate of merely 0.9% during Jordan’s rule – when the number of births was almost offset by net emigration – there was a 2.2% average annual population growth rate during Israel’s rule. Moreover, 1990 and 1991 featured 4.5% and 5.1% population growth rates.

Arguably, the surge of the Arab population growth was misperceived by the demographic establishment, which projected continued growth, ignoring the “pre-fall-surge” syndrome. The latter characterizes the population growth rates of third world societies, whenever integrated into Western world societies.

When a Third World population is integrated into a Western population, it benefits from a considerable modernization of infrastructure, which triggers a surge in fertility rate ( and reduced infant mortality) and reduced emigration. But, the surge in population growth lasts for one generation, before falling due to modernization/Westernization, as evidenced in Judea and Samaria:

*Massive urbanization (from 75% rural in 1967 to 77% urban in 2021);

*Most girls complete high school and increasingly pursue higher education;

*Reduced teen pregnancy and substantial use of contraceptives (70%);

*Larger female participation in the job market;

*Rising marriage age of women from 15 years old to 22 and older;

*Shorter reproductive period from 16-55 year old to 23-45 year old;

*Higher divorce rate and youth emigration;

*Bottom Line: 9 births per Arab woman in the 1960s; 3.02 births in 2021.

Does the article interest you?
04:45 16.11.2021
This is great! More education, lesser children, more prosperous families! Arab families are much happier living under Israeli administration!! 🎈
Barbara Press 04:26 16.11.2021
Kudos to Ambassador Ettinger for his insights, brilliant information and accurate analysis of Demography. Thank you
Anthony Cipriano 04:20 16.11.2021
That is the problem with these Arab nations. They keep their populations ignorant to a better life so that they can control them. Look at Lebanon, Syria, Afghanistan, Iran. Ignorance equals terrorism