The three Arab lists in the Knesset are expected to run together in response to a raised election threshold. Asked about self-identity, the majority consider themselves Arab, but a growing and significant minority call themselves Palestinian. Nearly 70 percent of Arabs citizens of Israel intend to vote if the three existing Arab parties run on a joint list, compared to 56 percent who voted in the 2013 elections, a new +972 poll found. But the call to boycott the elections holds powerful sway. A majority of 54 percent says that if there are such calls to boycott the elections, they…Read More... | 1 Comment
Over 70 percent of Israelis are worried about international isolation. Half believe settlements strengthen Israeli security and over half support a breakthrough vision for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict – roughly the same rate of support for the traditional two-state paradigm. But one-quarter support an apartheid vision for the future. Half the population supports anchoring Jewish identity in law – but over half either oppose doing so or have no opinion. Fully three-quarters support President Rivlin’s conciliatory approach and criticism of the government. The contradictions and convictions of Israelis at the end of 2014, and the beginning of the election cycle,…Read More... | 9 Comments
Palestinians fear Israelis more than Israelis fear Palestinians, opinion survey finds. Both societies reject the one-state solution, but Israelis also oppose the Arab Peace Initiative. A poll released Tuesday reveals pessimism and mistrust among Israelis and Palestinians. Members of both societies seriously doubt the chances of meaningful negotiations taking place. According to a survey of both societies, conducted by the Harry Truman Research Institute at the Hebrew University and the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, a clear majority in Palestinian society – 57 percent – believe that Israel’s long-term desire is to expand its borders from the Mediterranean…Read More... | 9 Comments
Israelis are more willing to discuss and accept their country's role in the Palestinian Nakba - until the historical events are portrayed as the story of the founding of a rival nation, and acknowledging those facts means legitimizing the other side's fundamental beliefs. In 2008, a fascinating, little-known study asked 500 Israeli Jews about Israel's behavior throughout the history of the conflict. The study was conducted by Rafi Nets-Zehngut, at the Teachers College of Columbia University and Daniel Bar-Tal of Tel Aviv University's School of Education. Bar-Tal is an internationally regarded expert in political psychology. Some of the findings were…Read More... | 35 Comments
An examination of Israeli public opinion toward U.S. President Obama and the two-state solution. The picture isn't as bleak as the mainstream media might lead you to believe. As President Obama continues his meetings in the region today, making the rounds to Ramallah and then back to Jerusalem, it is useful to keep in mind some trends regarding public opinion. Here are two specific themes that are relevant for this trip - attitudes towards the two-state solution to which he and his main interlocutors are so committed, and attitudes towards him. Regarding the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the Joint Israeli Palestinian Polls…Read More... | 10 Comments
It’s easy to disagree with Israelis about many things. But two new polls show that on key current issues, the public is at least thinking rationally and seeing clearly: *On Gaza, the majority know that Israel is no better off after the war in Gaza, and that the ceasefire won’t hold. *On the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the majority supports negotiations, supports the basic outlines of the Arab peace initiative and knows that the Palestinians cannot simply be beaten. *The majority acknowledges discrimination against Arabs in Israel, and a strong majority believes democracy is either more important than Jewishness of the state,…Read More... | 20 Comments
Most Israelis do not back the Prime Minister and Defense Minister's call for a pre-emptive strike on Iran, but most won't do much to oppose it either. Here are some numbers and thoughts on why. Just one-quarter of the Jewish public (27 percent) in Israel supports a unilateral Israeli strike on Iran, according to a new Peace Index survey from August 7-8, focused mainly on Iran. Fully 61 percent of the 516 Jewish respondents are against such a strike, with over one-quarter strongly opposed - even a majority on the right is opposed (51 percent). If Prime Minister Netanyahu and…Read More... | 28 Comments
"It's much easier to sit at home and lob criticism through blogs and tweets, and post that this isn't changing the world overnight. But political change happens one step at a time...If you're sitting on the sidelines critiquing the runners, I have no respect for you. Get in the race, show you can run it faster, show you can get to the finish line, prove you have better ideas." -J Street Executive Director Jeremy Ben-Ami Flush from the success of its third annual conference, J Street stands at tough crossroads. Its first two years of heady success as the receptacle…Read More... | 13 Comments
A new survey confirms that a clear majority of Israelis are opposed to a unilateral Israeli strike on Iranian nuclear facilities. Only 31 percent of all Israelis, Arabs and Jews, favor this option. Twice as many – 63 percent – are opposed. Over one-quarter are strongly opposed, which is more than twice those who are strongly in favor (12 percent). The survey is part of the Peace Index series, conducted by the Israeli Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University, among a representative sample of 600 adults. Telephone interviewing took place on the 28-29 of February, prior to Prime Minister Netanyahu's…Read More... | 1 Comment
The anti-boycott law is already considered the most controversial to come out of the current Knesset, but it seems that this controversy exists mostly in the media, and outside Israel. A recent poll, done for the Knesset channel and posted on the rightwing Srugim site, 52 percent of the Israeli public supports the law, and only 31 oppose it – not very different from the majority the law received in the Knesset. In that sense, the Israeli Parliament members represent their voters perfectly. Srugim didn't provide the data for the poll or the original questions asked, so we should take…Read More... | 4 Comments
No one knows what this evening will bring for Egypt. But a new Pechter Poll, funded by the Washington Institute for Near East policy, offers a remarkable insight from the days of revolution. Beware: It's a small sample of just 343 respondents, reached by land line and cellphone, from 5-8 February, during the third week of the uprising, in both Cairo and Alexandria. I have a hard time believing that the poll is "enough to be representative" as the authors claim. The sample size is of course not as important as the correct demographic and geographic distribution. Maybe that's why…Read More... | 1 Comment
Here’s a summary of some of the top quality polling being done by Israelis and Palestinians, about Israelis and Palestinians. From masses of data, I’ve selected highlights addressing two main themes: the Israeli Palestinian conflict, and the state of democracy in both societies. All the data comes from sources I trust. I use names or abbreviations of the surveys, and full information about each is at the end of this post, with links where possible - there's plenty more on most topics that might interest readers of this post. Since I’m drawing from different surveys, the questions are not identical…Read More... | 13 Comments
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The Beaten Path
Travel writer and tour guide Yuval Ben-Ami deconstructs the Holy Land's tourist trail.
On the challenges facing a growing population of asylum seekers and refugees in Israel.
Children under occupation
The effects of occupation on minors.
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On his bi-national tribute to #Lorde, Yuval Ben-Ami has to choose between the hardliners and the dovish Palestinians: http://t.co/PFDfkiwsYq
The Israeli Left has historically excluded Mizrahis from its ranks, while erasing their culture and history: http://t.co/ipeM3ioc73
It's time to start talking about Ashkenazi privilege: http://t.co/ipeM3ioc73
Why Mizrahis don't vote for the Left http://t.co/ipeM3ioc73
Netanyahu isn’t the only one leveraging int’l influence in #IsraelElex http://t.co/Af4pSN6E2G by @MikeOmerMan http://t.co/Ey8ux2GUZZ
The Arab parties united? Great, now it's time to get to work http://t.co/fsBG0uzMJ7
Palestinian popular struggle leader: Education is the best weapon against occupation http://t.co/4SBVXb2szr http://t.co/iVpbhydS8D