Six percent of Israelis say Obama is ‘pro-Israel’


WASHINGTON (JTA) — Just 6 percent of Jewish Israelis believe President Obama’s policies are pro-Israel, according to a new Jerusalem Post poll.

Half of those surveyed said Obama’s policies are more pro-Palestinian than pro-Israel, while 36 percent said he was neutral, according to the poll of 500 Jewish Israelis this week by Smith Research. The poll’s margin of error was plus or minus 4.5 percent.

The results are a sharp change from one month ago, just before Obama met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington. At that time, a poll by the same organization and with the same sample size found that 31 percent of Jewish Israelis polled said Obama was pro-Israel, 14 percent said he was pro-Palestinian and 40 pecent answered neutral.

That May poll also found that views of former President George W. Bush were extremely positive. Some 88 percent of Jewish Israelis said his administration was pro-Israel, 2 percent said it was pro-Palestinian and 7 percent said it was neutral.

The poll found that Israelis have nuanced views about settlements. There is a 57-38 percent margin in favor of removing illegal outposts, and a 52-42 percent margin supporting freezing construction in "far-flung isolated settlements." But only 27 percent supported stopping the building in "large settlements blocs like Gush Etzion, Ma’ale Adumim and Ariel," with 68 percent against.

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