Monday, May 04, 2009

Does a majority in US want Israel Penalized?

That's what a site in Abu Dhabi says regarding an April 18 poll by Zogby.

Majority in US want Israel to be penalised
Despite claiming continued support for Israel, a majority of US residents want a change in policy towards the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. A decisive plurality said US aid to Israel is “too much”, and a majority want to see Israel penalised for building new settlements on Palestinian land.

These were some of the findings of a Zogby International interactive survey of 4,320 US adults conducted in April for the Doha Debate, a BBC programme based in Qatar. Zogby International is a polling firm headed by my brother John.

Support for Israel remains high, with 71 per cent of US respondents having a favourable attitude towards Israelis and only 21 per cent holding a negative view. Attitudes towards the Palestinian people, on the other hand, are in the inverse, with a favourable rating of 25 per cent and an unfavourable mark of 66 per cent. Even Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, is viewed positively by 52 per cent of US residents, while Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, is seen favourably by only 19 per cent – with an unfavourable rating of 59 per cent.

Establishing this support for Israel and strong negative views of Palestinians is important and makes even more significant the other findings.


Wait a second, a poll for BBC in Qatar? Did I miss out on something? BBC is a Qatari station - things seem to get a whole different meaning for me.

Regarding the "findings" - dare I say bogus and made up results? I think some Arabs are projecting their hate and bias here and misreading a poll or misreporting it. Regarding polls - it's always a question of how you phrase it - some questions are posed to deduct a predetermined result. For example:

Would you like Israel to return the land it stole from poor innocent Palestinians and the illigal settlements built upon be torn?
A. Most defenetly
B. Yes
C. Perhaps
D. If it promotes peace - then yes
E. I support Jews right to dwell in Israel, so I'm probably some kind of a bigot

(made up poll question, just an example)
"Interestingly", the BBC "debate" in Qatar hung on to that question to make a conclusion that 63% percent of Americans support penalizing Israel.

Another point to mention regarding polls - it's a question of which segments of the population you seek. If you conduct a poll in Dearborn Michigan - you'd get a whole different perspective than the rest of the US.

Sarcasm and skepticism aside. I'm still worried about misconceptions and shifts in public opinions. When leftism and ignoring reality rule - bad, bad craziness can prevail.

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