This is a stunning level of approval for PM Benjamin Netanyahu, especially considering that a very large segment of the population is comprised of leftists.
Washington Post Barack Hussein Obama continues to press for an immediate ‘permanent’ cease-fire. But at home, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is riding a massive wave of popularity.
Domestic support for the Israeli leader’s prosecution of the war in Gaza, which has left more than 1,200 Palestinians dead, has only grown over the past three weeks, as the Israeli public and political class rally behind an aggressive, definitive campaign against Hamas and its rockets and tunnels. The deep support among Israelis, from left to right, for the military’s Gaza offensive and Netanyahu’s leadership is almost unprecedented, political analysts say.
A poll this week for Israel’s Channel 10 news, conducted by the Sarid Institute, found that 87 percent of Jewish Israelis support continuing the Gaza operation. A survey by the Israel Democracy Institute found that 95 percent of Israeli Jews think the operation in Gaza is just, and 4 out of 5 oppose a unilateral withdrawal. Just 4 percent said the Israeli military has used excessive force.
And in another survey this week, by the University of Haifa, 85 percent of Jewish Israelis said they are “very satisfied” or “satisfied” with Netanyahu’s leadership.
“Israel has never been this hard-line, maybe not since the 1967 war” against Egypt and other Arab states, said Amotz Asa-El, a fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute, a Jewish think tank in Jerusalem. “A sweeping majority of Israelis want a protracted, systemic, thorough uprooting of Hamas and its military capabilities.”
Netanyahu has brushed off pressure from the international community and from Obama, who told the Israeli prime minister on Sunday that he wanted to see a quick permanent cease-fire to stem civilian deaths.