Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Poll: Israel Not to Blame for Failure of Middle East Peace Talks

The Daily Beast reports that a new poll by The Israel Project shows that most Americans blame the Palestinians for the failure of the Israeli - Palestinian peace talks:
Over twice as many Americans agree with Israel’s claim that they are not primarily to blame for the failure of the Middle East peace process than those who agree with the Palestinian claim that moving toward a unity government with Hamas is a step toward peace, according to a new poll by The Israel Project.

The poll was conducted May 2-4, 2014, among a national sample of 1595 likely voters in the 2014 midterm election. The interviews were conducted online by Survey Sampling International.
Among the findings of the Israel Project poll:

  • 46 percent of respondents agreed with the statement: “Israel says that it cannot be expected to negotiate with a government or party that does not recognize its right to exist and seeks to destroy it.”

  • 18 percent of respondents agreed with the statement: “The Palestinians say that a unity government of all Palestinians is the first step to lasting peace.”

  • 48 percent of respondents agreed with the Israeli explanation of who is to blame for the breakdown of the talks, while 20 percent agreed with the Palestinian position.

  • Overall, 49 percent of Americans responding to the poll had a generally favorable view of Israel while 27 percent had an unfavorable view. In contrast, only 5 percent of respondents had a favorable view of Hamas while 57 percent had an unfavorable view. Only Syria (68%), Iraq (70%), and Iran (73%) had higher levels of unfavorability according to the poll.
Read the whole thing.

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Josh Block, the CEO of the Israel Project summed it up:
Americans simply don't buy efforts being made by some to blame the impasse on Israel. It doesn't matter how old they are, or what party they belong to, voters understand that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas turned his back on peace when he abandoned negotiations, turned to the international community to attack Israel, and announced a unity agreement with the Iran-backed terror group Hamas in the middle of Secretary Kerry's effort to keep talks going.

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