Israel’s “favorable” rating in the United States has climbed to a 23-year high in the Gallup poll, even as the Obama administration has been pressuring the Israeli government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to make a peace deal that would result in the creation of a Palestinian state.
CNS Almost four times as many Americans view Israel favorably as view the Palestinian Authority favorably, according to Gallup. Currently, 72 percent of Americans surveyed say they have a favorable opinion of Israel, while only 23 percent say they have an unfavorable opinion. (And less than 40% of Americans have a favorable opinion of Obama)
Only 19 percent of Americans say the have a favorable opinion of the Palestinian Authority. That ties the Palestinian Authority with Libya, which was also viewed favorably by only 19 percent of Americans.
In the 25 years Gallup has been asking Americans for their opinion of Israel (in 27 different surveys), Israel’s rating has been higher than it is now on only one occasion. That was when it hit 79 percent in a survey conducted from Jan. 30, 1991 to Feb. 2, 1991, during the Gulf War—when then-Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein was firing SCUD missiles at Tel Aviv and other locations in Israel in an unsuccessful attempt to goad Israel into joining the war.
Obama is meeting with Netanyahu in Washington today.
In an interview conducted late last week with Jeffrey Goldberg of Bloomberg, Obama used harsh language to explain how he intended to pressure the Israeli leader.
While Israel’s “favorable” rating is higher now than it has been at any time since Saddam Hussein was attacking Israel with SCUDS, many of Israel’s regional neighbors are among the nations seen least favorably by the American people.
In Gallup’s latest survey, conducted Feb. 6-9, the polling company asked Americans if they had a favorable or unfavorable view of 22 different countries. Eight of the bottom ten in the favorable ratings were Muslim-majority countries in the Middle East and North Africa (Libya) that have not recognized Israel. The other two in the bottom ten were North Korea—which has the lowest favorable rating—and Russia, which had the ninth lowest rating.
Here, ranked from the least favorable, are the nations in the Gallup that had the ten lowest favorable ratings among Americans:
1-North Korea, 11%
7-The Palestinian Authority, 19%
Egypt, which was the first Muslim-majority Middle Eastern country to recognize Israel, had the highest favorable rating, after Israel, among countries in the Middle East included in the Gallup survey. Egypt’s 45 percent favorable rating was up from the 40 percent it received in the Gallup poll conducted a year ago, in February 2013. In the intervening year, the Egyptian military removed Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood as Egypt’s president.