Israel losing democrats

Israel losing democrats

By Times of Israel— Three quarters of highly educated, high income, publicly active US Democrats — the so-called “opinion elites” — believe Israel has too much influence on US foreign policy, almost half of them consider Israel to be a racist country, and fewer than half of them believe that Israel wants peace with its neighbors. These are among the findings of a new survey carried out by US political consultant Frank Luntz. Detailing the survey results to The Times of Israel on Sunday, Luntz called the findings “a disaster” for Israel. He summed them up by saying that the Democratic opinion elites are converting to the Palestinians, and “Israel can no longer claim to have the bipartisan support of America.” He said he “knew there was a shift” in attitudes to Israel among US Democrats “and I have been seeing it get worse” in his ongoing polls. But the new findings surprised and shocked him, nonetheless. “I didn’t expect it to become this blatant and this deep.” A prominent US political consultant known best for his work with Republicans, Luntz is meeting with a series of high-level Israeli officials this week to discuss the survey and consult on how to grapple with the trends it exposes. “Israel has won the hearts and minds of Republicans in America, while at the same time it is losing the Democrats,” he said. On US politics, “I’m right of center,” he added. “But the Israeli government and US Jews have to focus on repairing relations with the Democrats.” Luntz put a series of largely Israel-related questions to 802 members of the opinion...
63% of Israeli Jews oppose major West Bank pullout, poll finds

63% of Israeli Jews oppose major West Bank pullout, poll finds

By ASHER ZEIGER, TIMES OF ISRAEL— Most Israeli Jews would oppose a peace agreement with the Palestinians if it included a full West Bank pullout with land swaps to let Israel retain major settlement population centers, according to a new poll that appears to contradict the conclusions of other recent surveys. The poll, released Tuesday by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University, found that 63 percent of Jews in Israel oppose a withdrawal to the 1967 lines with land swaps as part of any peace arrangement with the Palestinian Authority, even if it meant Israel would hold onto the Etzion Bloc, directly south of Jerusalem; Ma’aleh Adumim, east of the capital; and Ariel in the central West Bank about 34 kilometers (21 miles) east of Tel Aviv. Assuming Israeli retention of Ariel, Ma’aleh Adumim and other settlement blocs, 58% of Jewish respondents were opposed to the dismantling of other settlements. The poll was conducted among 602 respondents in late July, after the announcement of new peace talks with the Palestinians, and has a statistical error of 4.5%. According to the survey, 50% of Jewish Israelis also oppose the transfer of Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem to Palestinian Authority control with a special arrangement for Jewish holy sites. Israeli Arabs are more optimistic than their Jewish counterparts regarding the prospects of newly resumed negotiations with the Palestinian Authority. Seventy-nine percent of Israeli Jews believe talks have a low chance of success, as opposed to 18% who believe that the chances are high. Only 41% of the Arab Israelis surveyed said the talks had a low chance of success, while...
Hill Poll: Growing numbers feel Obama doesn't back Israel enough

Hill Poll: Growing numbers feel Obama doesn't back Israel enough

BY SANDY FITZGERALD, NEWSMAX— A growing number of people believe the Obama administration is not doing enough to support Israel, according to a recent survey commissioned by The Hill newspaper. The poll of 1,000 likely voters conducted Feb. 28 found that three times more voters think the White House is not supportive enough than those who believe it is too supportive. The new numbers for those who said President Barack Obama does not back Israel as much as he should are higher than they were in three similar Hill surveys conducted since May 2011. The February poll found 39 percent of respondents said Obama does not support Israel enough compared to 13 percent who said his policies are too supportive. A slightly larger percentage, 30 percent compared to 28 percent, said Obama is more anti-Israel than pro-Israel. But the percentage of people labeling Obama as being pro-Israel is up slightly from a September 2011 poll. Obama’s policies on Israel are being watched closely, while concerns rise about Iran’s nuclear program. Israel says Iran must be stopped from obtaining a nuclear weapon, even if it involves a military strike. The Obama administration favors a diplomatic solution instead. The White House is renewing its focus on Israel this month, with Vice President Joe Biden to address the American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference Monday, and Obama to make his first presidential visit to Israel later this month. The Hill poll, conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, also found that most voters think Obama should be somewhat or very involved in helping broker a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians. However, a...
Mideast Peace Talks' Hidden Threat

Mideast Peace Talks' Hidden Threat

by Jonathan Schanzer, Politico Some 46 percent of Israelis believe that President Barack Obama is “pro-Palestinian,” according to a Smith Research poll this summer. Since then, that figure most likely has ticked higher. After all, in July, the president upgraded the Palestinian delegation’s diplomatic status in Washington, and the peace talks that start Thursday are designed to lead inexorably to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state by the end of his first term. Supporters of Israel bitterly assert that Obama has done more for the Palestinians than any other president in history. But they may be wrong. Obama may not yet know it, but the new peace talks could single-handedly destroy the Palestinian cause. Put simply, the Palestinians are at war. In 2006, Hamas, the faction best known for its suicide bombing campaign of the 1990s, won legislative elections that earned it the right to form a governing coalition. Fatah, its longtime leading rival, refused to play ball, prompting a 15-month political standoff. And in June 2007, Hamas launched a bloody coup in the Gaza Strip, killing hundreds of Fatah members and shooting some in the legs to leave them crippled. After the coup, Hamas retained control of Gaza, where it maintains an iron grip. Fatah still clings to power in the West Bank. And the conflict continues, with spats and flare-ups reported regularly by news agencies and human rights groups in both fiefdoms. By pushing new peace talks between Israel and the West Bank-based Palestinian National Authority, Obama has officially excised the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip from the equation. Indeed, he has effectively put a halt to a...
Poll: Most Americans would support Israel attack on Iran

Poll: Most Americans would support Israel attack on Iran

by Shlomo Shamir, Haaretz Daily More than half of Americans would support Israel taking military action against Iran, according to a poll released on Wednesday. The poll was conducted by TIPP, the polling unit of TechnoMetrica Market Intelligence, a U.S. research firm of both syndicated and custom Market Research solutions. According to the poll, 43 percent of U.S. Democrats approve of Israel taking military action against Iran to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons, while 40 percent disapprove. However, when Republicans were asked the same question, 74 percent voiced approval while 17 percent disapproved. Among independents, 56 percent approved of military action while 30 percent disapproved. Overall, 56 percent of Americans approved a military strike, while 30 percent disapproved, according to the poll. Meanwhile, the NewsMax website reported on Thursday that a separate Pew Research poll showed similar results, with 66 percent of Americans preferring a strike, while 24 percent objected to it. According to the Pew Research poll, which included 22 countries last month, a majority in 16 of the states preferred a military strike over tolerating a nuclear Iran. Last week, The Washington Post reported that U.S. Senator John McCain said that he did not believe Israel was considering military action against Iran over its contentious nuclear program.  “I don’t believe we are at the point of making that kind of decision, nor is the Israeli government, given the state that Iran is in now as far as the development of their nuclear weapons is concerned,” McCain told reporters after talks with Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi and Defense Minister Ehud Barak.   Share...
Support for Israel near record high, Gallup Poll shows

Support for Israel near record high, Gallup Poll shows

by JTA.org According to the Gallup Poll, 63 percent of Americans say their sympathies in the Middle East conflict are with Israel, while 15 percent side with the Palestinians. The rest favor both sides, neither side or have no opinion. Support for Israel was higher only in 1991, shortly after Israel was hit with Scud missiles during the Gulf War, when it was at 64 percent. The poll, conducted in early February, was part of Gallup’s annual World Affairs survey in which Americans were asked a series of questions about their opinions of 20 countries or entities, including Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Israel’s ranking, at 67 percent favorable, was among the highest of the countries surveyed. The Palestinian Authority, at 20 percent, was among the lowest. Support for Israel increased more among Republicans and independents than Democrats, the poll showed. Since 2001, there has been an increase of 25 points among Republicans and 18 points among independents. Support for Israel among Democrats has stayed about the same. Asked whether peace eventually will be reached in the Middle East, 67 percent of respondents answered “doubtful” and 30 percent said “there will come a time” when there will be peace. In a general trend over the past 10 years, Democrats were more optimistic than Republicans about the chances for peace. Thirty-nine percent of Democrats said it will come; 25 percent of Republicans agreed. Pollsters conducted telephone interviews with a random sampling of 1,025 American adults between Feb. 1 and 3. The poll has a 4 percent margin of error. Share...
Jewish Donors Outraged by 'Sociopath' Obama, Says Columnist

Jewish Donors Outraged by 'Sociopath' Obama, Says Columnist

By Gil Ronen, Israelnationalnews.com If senior journalist David Goldman is right, the correct word for describing the way a growing number of US Jews feel about President Barack Obama is not ‘anger’ but ‘rage’ – white-hot rage, at that, and a conviction that they have been swindled. Goldman, Senior Editor of First Things magazine and ‘Spengler’ columnist for Asia Times Online, spoke last week at a convention on intellectuals and terror at Ariel University in Samaria. In his lecture, he quoted a top Jewish campaign donor who used the word ‘sociopath’ to describe Obama. In an interview with Israel National News, he predicted a possibly dramatic ‘train wreck’ for the Democrats in the November mid-term elections, with Jewish fundraising for Democrats drying up and a possibly high turnout of anti-Obama evangelical Christians.   INN: The recent McLaughlin group poll shows US Jewish support of Obama at about half its level in the 2008 election. Is this an accurate reflection of the mood among US Jews? DG: When the American Jewish Committee conducted its annual poll of American Jewish opinion in February, just before Obama provoked the diplomatic crisis [over construction at Ramat Shlomo], 55% of respondents approved of Obama’s handling of relations with Israel, slightly less than the 57% that approved of the Netanyahu government. American Jews were under the mistaken impression that Washington and Jerusalem were on the same track. But 61% opposed any compromise on Jerusalem, while 75% agreed with the statement, “The goal of the Arabs is not the return of occupied territories but rather the destruction of Israel.” Support for Obama, in short, was a mile...
Poll: Obama to blame for US-Israel crisis

Poll: Obama to blame for US-Israel crisis

By Ynetnews.com Despite the ongoing tension between Washington and Jerusalem, a clear majority – 61% – of the overall Israeli public defines the relations between the two countries as very good or good (in the Arab sector the rate of those who view these relations as good is considerably higher—79%), this according to a War and Peace Index survey. At the same time, the poll showed, those defining the relations as “very good” (14%) are considerably fewer than those who deem them “moderately good” (47%). This finding is consistent with the prevailing view – 46% – that these relations have recently deteriorated. Thirty-four percent think they have remained the same, while only 14% see them as having improved (the rest do not know). Which of the two leaders – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or US President Barack Obama – does the public hold responsible for the deterioration in the two states’ relations? There are indirect indications in the answers to a question on how these two leaders are managing US-Israeli relations. Assessments of how Prime Minister Netanyahu is handling the issue are relatively favorable: the majority – 56% – give him a good or very good grade for managing these relations (33% give him a poor or very poor one while 11% do not know). President Obama, in comparison, gets a good or very good grade from only 43% of the respondents, while 48% give him a poor or very poor grade on managing his relations with Israel (9% do not know). Is President Obama perceived, then, as hostile to Israel? The findings show that this is not the...