Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Just out. The Peace Index: November 2007 by Prof. Ephraim Yaar and Prof. Tamar Hermann .

The Peace Index Project is conducted at the Tami Steinmetz Center for Peace Research and the Evens Program in Mediation and Conflict Resolution of Tel Aviv University, headed by Prof. Ephraim Yaar and Prof. Tamar Hermann. The telephone interviews were conducted by the B. I. Cohen Institute of Tel Aviv University on 3- 4 December 2007, and included 592 interviewees who represent the adult Jewish and Arab population of Israel (including the territories and the kibbutzim). The sampling error for a sample of this size is 4. 5%.

One excerpt:-

As in the past the dominant view in Israel is that the Israeli government and people are interested in peace— 78% and 80% respectively. Surprisingly though today there is also a majority— albeit small— saying that the Palestinian Authority under Abu Mazen’s leadership also desires peace (55%). Regarding the desire for peace among the Palestinian people in general the opinions are divided with a very slight lead on the
positive side: 48% think the Palestinians want peace 45% think they do not.

Notwithstanding all the events in recent years a majority of the Jewish public also views the Palestinians’ demand for an independent state as justified— 62% (compared to 34. 5% who see it as unjustified). As in the past there is also a majority— 58%— for those who are sure or who think Israel can allow itself the establishment of an independent Palestinian state (32% think or are sure that it cannot and the rest do not know).

However despite the positive attitude toward the “two- state” solution both in terms of justice and pragmatism from the Israeli standpoint a large obstacle is the widespread belief in the Israeli Jewish public that even if a peace agreement is signed along these lines it will not constitute the end of the historic conflict for the Palestinians. Whereas
61% hold this pessimistic assessment only 31% believe an agreement according to the two- state for ula would end the conflict from the Palestinians’ standpoint. Furthermore a large majority of 71% believes it is impossible to reach a peace settlement with the Palestinians without Hamas’s consent with only 21% claiming the opposite. Given the perception of Abu Mazen’s weakness it is clear why this assessment also contributes to the lack of belief in the feasibility of a peace solution.

All this apparently explains the preference of the majority of the Israeli Jewish public—som e 53% vs. 26%— that even if an Israeli- Palestinian peace agreement is signed based on the “two states for two peoples” formula, the border between the two states should remain closed
(5% prefer that it be closed to the Palestinians and open to the Jews; 1% open to the Palestinians and closed to the Jews; and 15% do not know).

For the sur ey data see here.

No comments: