New Poll: 3 Out Of 4 Israelis Who Took Position Opposed Bush’s Proposal To Give $410 Million To Abbas’ PA
November 13, 2007

U.S. humanitarian aid to PA can release
funds for terror — money is fungible

New York — A new poll has shown that Israelis, by a majority of approximately 3 to 4 of respondents who took a position, oppose the Bush Administration’s proposal to give $410 million in aid to Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority (PA). According to a survey of 507 Israeli Jews, carried out by the Brains’ Trust (Maagar Mochot) Research Institute on October 31, of those who took a position, 72% opposed the proposed U.S. funding, whereas only 28% supported the idea. (Of the entire sample, 48% opposed the proposed U.S. funding, only 19% supported and 33% were undecided or offered other answers). When the question was couched in terms of the commitment to Israel’s destruction contained in the Palestinian Charter, the Hamas Charter and the absence of Israel as a recognized country in Palestinian schoolbooks, 77% of Israelis who took a position opposed the proposed U.S. funding, while only 23% supported it. (Of the entire sample, 53% opposed the proposed funding, only 16% supported it and 31% were undecided or offered other answers). Moreover, majorities of supporters of the three major Israeli political parties — Kadima, Likud and Labor — opposed funding for the PA.

ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “In this poll, Israelis have clearly stated that they overwhelmingly oppose the continued funding of Abbas’ PA. It is important that U.S. aid to the PA cease completely because it sends the wrong message that we are satisfied with the PA’s actions. There is also another reason why such aid should end — because such funds, even if used for humanitarian aid, are fungible: meaning, each dollar of American taxpayer’s money given to the PA as humanitarian aid frees up one dollar for the PA potentially purchasing arms and funding terrorist groups.

“This poll result is entirely consistent with some other recent polls that clearly show that the Israeli public does not share the rush to embrace Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority and the concessions that both the Olmert government and the Bush Administration are proposing to make to them. In May, for example, another Israeli poll showed a large majority of Israeli Jews — 71% — believed that the real goal of the Palestinian Arabs is to destroy Israel, 72% opposed the uprooting of Jewish communities within the framework of further Israeli unilateral withdrawals in Judea and Samaria and 58% of Israeli Jews reject the “land-for-peace” formula whereby Israel has made territorial concessions to the Palestinian Authority ( Independent Media Review Analysis, May 18).

“The results of this poll are important because it disproves the unfounded assertion that is often made that the Israeli public supports further unilateral concessions to the PA. In fact, the election of Hamas, the incessant barrage of rockets from territory evacuated by Israel in Gaza, the assaults and kidnappings from both Gaza and southern Lebanon and the smuggling in of massive amounts of offensive weaponry into Gaza by terrorists has persuaded the Israeli public that the Palestinian Arabs do not seek peace, that they continue to wage terrorism and incite their youth to hatred and murder of Jews in response to Israeli concessions, and that uprooting Jewish communities is no solution to these problems.

“Israelis are no longer fooled by the false promises of Palestinian Arabs and understand now that their goal is Israel’s destruction, as it was when the Oslo process began. We hope the Olmert government comes to recognize this and desists from proceeding on a path of concessionary policies which can only result in further bloodshed and insecurity for Israel.”

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