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Only One in Three Israelis Think Israel Benefited from Gaza

Only One in Three Israelis Think Israel Benefited from Gaza Conflict

Three in Five Now View Obama Favorably

In the aftermath of November's round of fighting with Hamas and other groups in the Gaza Strip, only 36% of Israelis think that Israel is better off than it was before the escalation, while a majority feel Israel is either about the same (38%) or worse off (21%), finds a new University of Maryland poll.

Four in ten (40%) said Israel "won the combat in the Gaza Strip." A majority said either that no side won (45%) or that Hamas won (11%). "Clearly most Israelis are not feeling victorious," said Shibley Telhami one of the primary investigators of the poll.

"There are distinct warming trends toward the United States in Israeli opinion and, somewhat surprisingly, toward President Obama," said Steven Kull the other primary investigator. Sixty percent of Israelis now have a positive view of President Obama. Among Israeli Jews, positive views have risen over the past year from 54% to 62%. President Obama is identified as the most admired leaders by more Israeli Jews than any other leader.

More Israelis think that American public support for Israel's security needs is growing than think it is receding. Forty percent say such support has increased over the last few years, while only 21% say it has decreased (about the same: 36%).

On Iran, Israelis continue to believe that Iran is on its way to developing a nuclear weapon, ,but support for an Israeli attack on Iranian nuclear facilities is only at 38%, with 50% opposed. Only one in five are favor proceeding without US support. Among Israeli Jews, those ready to go ahead without US support has dropped from 22% a year ago to 18% now.

These are some of the findings of a new poll conducted by the Anwar Sadat Chair for Peace and Development at the University of Maryland and the Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA). The polling project was directed by Shibley Telhami, Anwar Sadat Professor at the University of Maryland and Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution and Steven Kull, Director of PIPA.

The poll of 600 Israelis has a margin of error of +/-4.0% and was fielded on November 21 and November 24-25 by the Dahaf Institute in Israel.

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