Young Israelis do not support two-state solution

B'nai B'rith survey provides insight into Israeli attitudes.

Younger Israelis appear more hopeful than those over 55 about figuring out a strategy other than a two-state solution for Israel, according to B’nai B’rith’s fifth annual Survey of Contemporary Israeli Attitudes toward World Jewry, released Wednesday.
The survey gauged the reactions of 500 Israelis aged 18 and over to current issues, and their feelings about Diaspora Jews.
“The results of the survey were significant, providing interesting insights into Israeli attitudes,” B’nai B’rith World Center director Alan Schneider said.
“Whereas Israelis were divided on particular policy issues, especially those being put forth by Diaspora Jewish organizations, they believe that those organizations that lobby on behalf of what they believe is best for Israel should support the elected government,” he said. “They also believe that unwavering support of Israel is not detrimental to Israel’s longterm goals.”
Survey questions ranged from how apprehensive Israelis were about the record number of anti- Semitic incidents in the Diaspora to the main goal of the Jewish Agency: Should it be focusing on Jewish identity, or concentrating on promoting aliya? One survey statement read: “A two-state solution to the Israel- Palestinian conflict is essential to Israel’s survival as a national home of the Jewish people as a vibrant democracy.” Fifty-five percent agreed; 36 percent disagreed.
Mitchell Barak, who wrote the survey and conducted the analysis, described the trend as even more interesting when broken down by age.
Out of the 55 percent who said they supported the two-state solution, only 40 percent of those in the 18-24 age group were in favor; among 25-34-year-olds, 45% supported the idea, while among those 35-44, support increased to 59 percent.
Among those 45-54, support dropped slightly to 54 percent, then climbed among the 55-64 age group to 67%. Sixty-five percent of those over 65 supported the two-state solution.
“You can see definitely that those who are younger are less likely to support the two-state solution,” said Barak. “It may indicate that older people are worn out from the peace process and peace negotiations.
Younger people seem readier to invest the time and effort needed to come up with an alternative, he added.
Another survey statement (created by JCall’s “call for reason”) read: “It is essential that the European Union, along with the United States, put pressure on both parties and help them achieve a reasonable and rapid solution to the Israeli-Palestine conflict.”
Forty-eight percent of those surveyed agreed, while 41% disagreed.
“For Israelis to say our government should be pressured – I found that surprising,” Schneider told The Jerusalem Post.
“A lot of studies have been done on the attitude to Israel in the United States and elsewhere,” said Schneider. “What we thought was lacking was a consistent measuring of Israeli attitudes about the Jewish Diaspora.
“We’re been doing this [survey] for five years. We’re continuing to track this... seeing how trends might be changing over time.”