Poll: Majority of Jewish Israelis oppose attack on Iran

Israeli support for a unilateral attack on Iran has collapsed – dramatically.  By a huge margin of over two to one, Israelis believe that it would be a mistake for Israel to attack Iran without US support.  61% oppose a unilateral attack, while only 27% support it.  

This is a huge setback for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak who have championed a unilateral Israel attack on Iran modelled on the successful 1981 Israeli air strike on the Osirak reactor in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. 

According to reports from Israel, the final straw came recently when Sheldon Adelson and his pet puppet, Mitt Romney, strenuously urged Netanyahu to attack Iran in order to upstage President Obama in the US presidential election.  Israelis are not fond of either Romney or his chief financial backer, and their unpopularity will now impact Netanyahu who rules Israel by a tiny majority in the Knesset that is fashioned out of a very shaky coalition of extremist right-wing parties.

“A majority of Jewish Israelis oppose an attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities without U.S. cooperation, and think it is unlikely Israel will soon launch a unilateral strike against the Islamic Republic, a poll released Thursday has found.

Some 61 per cent of those questioned oppose an Israeli strike, compared to 27 per cent in favor, the poll by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University’s Evens Program in Mediation and Conflict Resolution found.

In addition, 56 per cent think the chances are low that Israel would launch such a strike unilaterally, compared to 33 per cent who assume Israel will go ahead anyway.

The poll, conducted last week, interviewed 516 respondents and had a 4.5 per cent margin of error.

Speculation, fueled by a flurry of reports and analysis in Israeli media, has snowballed in recent days that a unilateral Israeli attack on Iran is only a matter of months, or even weeks.

Israel sees a nuclear-armed Iran as an existential threat, pointing to repeated statements by Iranian leaders that the Jewish state should be wiped off the map.

Iran denies Western allegations that it is seeking to build a nuclear weapon and insists that its nuclear program is solely for peaceful purposes. ( http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/poll-most-israelis-oppose-attack-on-iran-nuclear-facilities-1.458743)  

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Articles by: Michael Carmichael

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