IDF soldier patrol 390.
(photo credit: REUTER/Baz Ratner)
Sixty-three percent of Israelis oppose Israel withdrawing from the Jordan
Valley, even if international forces take on responsibility for Israel’s
security along the West Bank, a recent poll revealed.
The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) commissioned the poll from Mina Tzemach, the noted pollster who is with Midgam. She surveyed 588 Israelis.
JCPA president Dore Gold, a former adviser to
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, said his organization had sponsored the poll
in response to various press reports on the subject.
The poll also showed
that 74% of Israeli Jews were against having international forces in the Jordan
Valley, rather than the IDF.
The current US administration has proposed
that international forces be installed in the Jordan Valley as part of an
Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement.
Israel maintains that there must be
an IDF presence on the Jordanian border, but the Palestinian Authority rejects
the idea of having any Israeli forces in the West Bank.
explanation for an overwhelming majority of Israelis opposing the deployment of
international forces in the Jordan Valley, Gold said, is the United Nations’
historical inability to defend Israel’s borders.
Gold noted that the Six
Day War followed the UN Emergency Force’s evacuation of the Sinai Peninsula
because then-Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser had ordered the force to
leave. The UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) also failed to prevent the First
and Second Lebanon Wars and Hezbollah’s rearmament, he said, and much of the UN
Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF), which is in the Golan Heights to maintain
the cease-fire between Syria and Israel, has requested to leave as
According to the poll, 63% of Israelis also oppose NATO forces in
the Jordan Valley.
Gold was surprised that “the aura of NATO as the
powerful force that blocked the spread of the Soviet military on the European
continent is no longer the perception of people around the
Especially because of Afghanistan, the image of “NATO as
representing Western security has changed,” he said.
Besides the issue of
the Jordan Valley, the poll showed that over 70% percent of Israelis were
against dividing Jerusalem and transferring the Temple Mount to the
All of these results are roughly the same as those of a
December 2012 poll the Dahaf Institute conducted, which suggests that the peace
negotiations in the last year have not caused Israeli public opinion to
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