In a recent speaking tour in the US, I kept coming across Jews who were consumed by anxiety that so many of their young people were turning against Israel.

I had encountered such anxiety on previous trips, but this time it was worse than ever before.

Their children, they said, were being hoodwinked by bigoted hostility to Israel — wildly ridiculous lies and libels that they were choosing to believe because these formed the default anti-Zionist narrative on campus.

What was to be done to reverse this, the parents repeatedly asked.

I told them something that many didn’t want to hear but which I believe to be an inconvenient truth. Young American Jews are turning against Israel principally because they are disconnecting from Judaism.

And the reason for that is their parents are generally disconnecting from Judaism, largely because of the impact of the progressive denominations to which some three quarters of American Jews subscribe and which are telling them that liberal universalist values are authentic Jewish values.

But they are not. They are, in fact, inimical to Judaism. The community’s secular religion of tikkun olam,or supposedly Jewish social justice, is a fraud.

As Jonathan Neumann puts it in his excellent book To Heal the World?, American Jews have been led to believe that “the purpose of the Jews in the world is to campaign for higher taxes, sexual permissiveness, reduced military spending, illegal immigration, opposition to fracking, the banishment of religion from the public square and every other liberal cause under the sun — all in the name of God”.

It’s not Jewish, just, or even very social, constituting a mish-mash of Marxism, moral relativism and paganism.

We should listen to Melanie Phillips.