A new Israeli poll has found that 68% of Israelis are opposed to withdrawing from the Golan Heights and that 53% are opposed to withdrawals from Judea and Samaria, in both cases, not even in return for a “real peace.” In the case of unilateral withdrawals in Judea and Samaria, nearly two-thirds of Israelis — 65% — are opposed. When it comes to concessions on Jerusalem involving the Western Wall, 86% of Israelis are opposed. 86% also believe that Israel would not be able to reach a peace agreement with Syria. The poll, conducted by the Dahaf Institute for the Knesset Channel, was conducted to ascertain how Israelis would vote in the event of a referendum on any future withdrawals following the presentation of a bill in the Knesset by former coalition chairman MK Avigdor Yitzchaki (Kadima) that would require a referendum prior to any withdrawals from Jerusalem or the Golan Heights. The bill passed its first reading, despite the opposition of the Olmert government, Meretz and Arab parties (Israel National News, June 1).
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “This latest poll shows that the majority of the Israeli public opposes a policy of withdrawal, let alone one of unilateral withdrawals, which the Olmert government has advocated. The negative consequences of Israel’s 2005 unilateral withdrawal from Gaza have included increased arms smuggling into Gaza, increased rocket attacks from northern Gaza, and the infiltration of Al-Qaeda and Iranian personnel into the territory. Former Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Chief-of-Staff, Lt.-Gen. Moshe Yaalon has also argued that it was this unilateral withdrawal that led to Hamas’ election victory and emboldened it to continue attacking Israel. The horrific anti-peace, pro-terror actions of the PA and its people show clearly that they have no interest in peace, only in Israel’s destruction and this has caused the Israeli public to move clearly to the right.
“Israelis are afraid that further unilateral withdrawals in Judea and Samaria will only bring Iranian and Al-Qaeda personnel as well as missiles, katyushas rockets and mortars up to Israel’s major population centers, including Jerusalem, while civilian aircraft taking off and landing at Ben-Gurion airport will be within the terrorists’ range. We urge the Olmert government to heed the large majority opposition to further unilateral concessions and to publicly discard the idea from its platform.”