Article Library / 2016

2016 Annual Assessment

The weakest link in the Indo-Israeli relationship, which does not bode well for the future, is that most of the Indian people know little or nothing of Jews, Judaism, Israel, or the Holocaust. Some, among them left-wing intellectuals and Muslims, see Israel only through the lens of the Palestinian conflict. Others, including right-wing Hindus, admire Israel as a mythical warrior nation fighting Muslims. There is a great need to improve the Jewish people and Israel’s soft power in India through cultural outreach, education, and the media, but the resources to do so are woefully inadequate. Israel has a modest cultural policy in India, mainly involving the performing arts and sports. Academic links between the two countries are still quite small.  Israel’s universities both teach and research on old and new India, but no more than two or three scholars or lecturers deal with Israel or Judaism in Indian universities. These efforts, on both sides, are severely under-funded and under-staffed.