COLUMN SEVENTY-EIGHT, NOVEMBER 1, 2002
(Copyright © 2002 The Blacklisted Journalist)
PRELIMINARY POLL RESULTS:
MOST ISRAELI 'TRIANGLE' ARABS REJECT INTIFADA
Two years after the
outbreak of the al-Aqsa Intifada and the violent events within the Green
Line, the Institute for Peace Research at Givat Haviva conducted a poll amongst
a representative sample of Arab residents in the Triangle Region. The poll
examined their positions regarding the intifada, the participation of
Arab residents in it, their definition of the State and of their individual
identity, as well as their opinions regarding methods of improving the relations
between Jews and Arabs in Israel, their willingness to participate in joint
activities and their intentions to vote or not vote in the coming elections.
The following are the major
findings arising from the survey:
Close to two-thirds are
interested in the cessation of the intifada, while 15% prefer that it
More than 80% support the
proposal that the intifada will be conducted with no violence on either
believe that the role of Arabs in Israel in the intifada is in providing
financial and moral support to their brothers in the territories, or in bringing
political pressure within Israel towards a solution to the conflict. Almost 20%
stated that Arab citizens do not need or are unable to play any role in the
conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
More than 68% of Triangle
residents reject the proposal to annex their villages to a future Palestinian
state. 18% of them would be ready for this, and to relinquish their Israeli
citizenship (as compared with approximately 30% who answered this way in the
poll which was conducted some eighteen months ago). 44% of those who are ready
for annexation to the Palestinian state explain this by saying that they are
Palestinians and 38% say that the reason is 'the existence of manifestations
of racism against Arabs in Israel." The explanations of those who are opposed
to the proposal are: "I have become used to living in Israel? (37%), 'the
true meaning of the proposal is ceding the homeland? (27.7%) and the economic
situation in Israel is better (16.7%).
A large majority of the
respondents (more than 70%) recommends holding joint social, economic and
political activities between Arabs and Jews, as a way to improve relations
between them. About two-thirds would be willing to participate in such activity.
The functioning of the
current government towards the Arabs in Israel receives a negative grade---
approximately three-quarters noted that it is very bad or bad, 20% described it
as mediocre and about 4% said it is good.
Fewer than half of the
respondents have already decided to participate in the next elections for the
Knesset. 29% have decided not to participate and the rest have not yet formed an
opinion on the question.
As to the definition of
their identity: one-third define their national identity as "Palestinians or
Arab citizens in Israel," one-third use various combinations of "Arab? and
"Palestinian," and 22% "Israeli Arab."
How would the Arabs of the
Triangle Region wish to see the national character of the State of Israel? A
decisive majority---80.5%---would like it to be "a state for all its
citizens," Jews and Arabs, and 12% accept its continued existence as a
"democratic Jewish state." This, as opposed to their definition of the state
as it is today: only 15% believe it is indeed a state for all its citizens, 7%
define it as "bi-national? and moir? than 75% say that it is 'the state
of the Jewish People? (59%) or a "Jewish-democratic state? (15%).
More than a third of the
respondents described themselves as 'religious," more than half as
'traditional," and 12% as 'secular."
The survey was conducted by
Yafa Research Institute Ltd., Nazareth, between 10-12 September (before the most
recent wave of terror attacks inside Israel and the siege on the Mukata),
amongst the adult population over the age of 18. The survey was conducted by
telephone in Arabic. The survey was among 509 interviewees, with a margin of
error of 4%.
Full results will be published in a special survey within a few weeks. ##
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