Arab countries now regret driving out their Jewish populations Illustration - Noam Moskowitz/Flash90
Middle East

Arab Countries Say “We Miss the Jews”

Having punished the Jews for the rebirth of Israel, many Arabs now realize they shot themselves in the foot


A million Jews lived in Arab countries in the 20th century. Today, just a few thousand are left, mostly in Morocco and Tunisia. The departure of Jews caused a crisis in almost every Arab country. Despite their relatively limited numbers, the Jewish impact on society, economy and trade had been crucial to the development of Arab nations. It is no wonder that after the departure of Jews from places like Iraq and Egypt, these countries experienced crisis after crisis, in contrast to the golden years known as “the age of the Jews.” 

Now there is a longing in most Arab countries for the Jews to return. Many believe that only with a Jewish presence will their country blossom and develop as in the past. Jewish contribution to the Arab states was significant. In Egypt, for example, the gold market flourished, and continues to do so until this day, even though the Jews were kicked out and Jewish stores ransacked. Still, Jewish symbols like the Magen David remain engraved on shops, in the markets and on buildings.…