New Poll: Americans Oppose Gaza Plan, Palestinian State, Aid To Palestinians And Dealing With Hamas; While Supporting Jerusalem For Israel And Sanctions Against Saudi Arabia
June 30, 2005

New York – A major new national poll has found that 63% of Americans oppose Israel’s Gaza Withdrawal Plan; 80% oppose US aid to Palestinians; 61% oppose dealing with even elected or appointed Hamas members; while 63% support Jerusalem remaining under Israeli sovereignty; and 58% support economic sanctions against Saudi Arabia.

By a margin of 2 to 1, Americans believe the Gaza Plan rewards terrorism, by a margin of 3 to 1, Americans believe a Palestinian State’s goal would be the destruction of Israel; by a margin of 2 ½ to 1, believe a Palestinian State would be a terrorist state; and by a margin of 10 to 1, do not believe Saudi Arabia is a reliable ally in the US war against radical Islamic terrorism.

The poll was commissioned by the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), the oldest pro-Israel group in the US. It was carried out by McLaughlin & Associates, a major national polling company, on June 26-27, 2005. The poll questioned a scientific sample of 1,000 Americans from throughout the US.

The poll findings:

By 63% to 16%, Americans oppose “Israel’s unilateral withdrawal from a section of Gaza and Northern Samaria” and “forcing 10,000 Israeli Jews from their homes and businesses.”

By 50% to 28%, Americans believe that “this Gaza Plan sends a message that Arab terrorism is being rewarded.”

By 63% to 5%, Americans say that “Jerusalem should remain under Israeli sovereignty — not Palestinian sovereignty.”

By 80% to 12%, Americans oppose “the continuation of $350 million in US aid to Palestinian Arabs.”

By 58% to 21%, Americans believe “the goal of a Palestinian Arab State would be to destroy Israel — not to live in peace with it”.

By 53% to 21%, Americans believe “a Palestinian State would be a terrorist state — not a peaceful democracy.”

By 61% to 28%, Americans believe that “if Hamas members are elected or appointed to official positions in the Palestinian Arab government, US officials should not meet or negotiate with them.”

By 78% to 8%, Americans say that “Saudi Arabia is not a reliable or trustworthy ally in the war against radical Islamic terrorism.”

By 58% to 28%, Americans support “economic sanctions against Saudi Arabia until they stop supporting and funding terrorists and radical Islamic education that teaches hatred against the US and Israel.”

ZOA President Morton A. Klein said: “This national poll exposes the myth that Americans support the Gaza/Northern Samaria Withdrawal/Expulsion Plan. Americans realize that it’s a bad deal for Israel to make these major concessions without getting anything in return. They also understand that this rewards the Hamas and Fatah suicide bombing terrorists whose counterparts are killing Americans every day in Iraq. This Plan harms the US war against radical Islamic terrorism by sending a message that terrorism pays and pays well.

“We hope that President Bush and Condoleezza Rice will soon see the danger to America in this Plan. Palestinian chief Abbas’ recent invitation to terror chiefs to move from Syria to Gaza after Israel leaves should alone end all discussion of the wisdom of this evacuation plan by Israel. When Israel leaves Gaza, the Arab terrorists will surely take over.

“This national poll clearly shows the antagonism that US citizens have to giving their hard-earned dollars in the form of $350 million of US aid to what Americans clearly see as a terrorist regime called the Palestinian Authority (PA). It is remarkable to see that average Americans understand that any Palestinian State that may evolve will be committed to Israel’s destruction — not to living in peace with Israel.

“I wish more US Congressmembers and President Bush realized this instead of praising Palestinian chief Abbas as a peace-maker and promoting the establishment of yet another terrorist state in the region. It is high time that US aid to the Palestinian Arabs be conditional on the PA’s fulfilling all of their written twelve-year old obligations including the disarming and dismantling of terror groups, ending incitement against Israel and Jews, arresting terrorists, closing bomb factories, and stopping the smuggling of weapons and missiles from Sinai into Gaza.

“And while Europe is planning to negotiate with the terror group Hamas and the US is considering what to do if Hamas gains in power in the Palestinian Authority, it is refreshing to see that US citizens clearly understand that America should never negotiate with as venal a terror group as Hamas.

“It is also refreshing to see virtually unanimous support among Americans for Israel to maintain sovereignty over Jerusalem. Jerusalem has never been the capitol of any country except Israel. When Jordan controlled it, no Arab leader visited Jerusalem — yet Arabs would not let any Jew visit Judaism’s holy city. Jerusalem is mentioned in the Jewish holy books 700 times — in the Islamic Koran — not once. Americans understand all this — it is time President Bush moves the US Embassy to Israel’s capital, Jerusalem, as US law requires. Bush’s refusal to move the Embassy sends a clear message that Islamic terrorism impacts US policy on Jerusalem and stops the President from fulfilling US law.

“This poll also makes clear that Americans will never forget that 15 of the 19 Islamic terrorists who blew up the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, murdering 3000 Americans, were from Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia has not yet arrested anyone in connection with 9-11. Americans are becoming more aware that Saudi Arabia is the leading source of terrorism and extremist Whabbi hate education in mosques around the world. In fact, a series of reports from counter-terrorism think tanks found that 55% of Iraq’s anti-American suicide bombers were Saudis. That’s why Americans are supporting sanctions against Saudi Arabia until they change.

“We urge Members of Congress and President Bush to work to pass the Saudi Arabia Accountability Act which will demands action by Saudi Arabia through the threat of sanctions. Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) and Cong. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) are the lead sponsors in the Senate and the House respectively. There are already 10 co-sponsors in the Senate and 35 in the House. We urge that Congress heed the will of the people and pass this important legislation.

“In conclusion, the responses to these poll questions make it crystal clear that Americans are fervent supporters of the people of Israel, understand the terrorist nature of Abbas’ Palestinian Arab regime, and the promotion of violence and hatred by Hamas and Saudi Arabia. President Bush should be more bold in his support of the democratic state of Israel and more bold in his pressure against the anti-peace dictatorships in the Arab world.”

Center for Law & Justice
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