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Survey: 'The whole world is against us'
ByHILARY LEILA KRIEGER IN WASHING
August 20, 2010 05:04
Large majority of Americans, however, still view Israel as ally.
Israelis rally in Jerusalem for peace on May 15

Peace Rally 311. (photo credit:AP)

While 60 percent of the US public views Israel as an ally, nearly the same percentage of Israelis believe “the whole world is against us,” according to two separate polls released on Thursday.

According to a new Rasmussen poll, 60 percent of those queried consider Israel an ally, with only 4% considering it an enemy and 31% believe it’s somewhere in between. Another six percent said they were not sure.


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That’s the good news.

The more problematic news from Israel’s perspective is that 34%, or roughly a third of Americans, expected that US-Israel relations would worsen in the coming year. But that figure, too, has to be put in perspective, since 36% of the American public believes that US relations with the Muslim world would also get worse over the next year.

The survey of 1,000 likely voters was conducted on August 9 and 10 and had a +/-3% margin of error.

In Israel, meanwhile, some 77% of Jewish Israelis believe that the world will continue to be critical, regardless of what Israel does or how far it is willing to go on the Palestinian issue, a Peace Index survey published Thursday showed.

Likewise, some 56% of Jewish Israelis believe that “the whole world is against us,” according to the survey, conducted under the auspices of the Evens Program for Conflict Resolution at Tel Aviv University and the Israel Democracy Institute.

In contrast to the Jewish population, a large majority (75%) of the Arab public disagrees with the maxim that the whole world is against Israel.

This survey also found that 62% of Jewish Israelis gave the government a failing grade in its handling of foreign relations. Fifty-five percent of the respondents said that Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman was either moderately or greatly damaging Israel’s international status.

This poll was conducted by phone with 601 respondents on August 8-9, with a +/-4.5% margin of error.

Another poll, this one conducted by Stanley Greenberg for The Israel Project and presented last week to some key Israeli decision-makers, showed an erosion of US support for Israel.

The poll was not made public, but according to a Haaretz report, the survey indicated that while in August 2009, 63% of the Americans surveyed said the US needed to support Israel, by July of this year only 51% had the same opinion.

Likewise, while 66% of the respondents in December 2007 said that the government – at the time led by Ehud Olmert – was committed to peace with the Palestinians, last month only 45% felt Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was committed to the peace process.

The Prime Minister’s Office had no response to the poll, directing queries to The Israel Project, which declined to release the poll’s complete findings.

Yoni Cohen contributed to this report.
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