Israel rates with Americans, Gallup Poll shows


WASHINGTON (JTA) — A substantial majority of Americans continue to rate Israel favorably according to the latest Gallup Poll.

Sixty-eight percent of Americans rated Israel favorably in the poll conducted Feb 2-5, statistically the same as the 67 percent Israel scored in 2010.

Israel ranked seventh among 21 countries in this year’s poll behind, in order, Canada, Britain, Germany, Japan, India and France.

Iran scored last, with 11 percent approval, and the Palestinian Authority scored fifth from last, with 19 percent approval.

In its commentary when the poll was released Feb. 11, Gallup noted that Egypt had plunged in approval since the 2010 polling. The most recent poll was conducted before military authorities acceded to protesters’ demands and removed Hosni Mubarak from the presidency.

France, meantime, had climbed steadily from a low of 34 percent in 2003, when it opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq, to 71 percent this year.

"Americans’ ratings of foreign countries suggest Americans are aware of what is occurring internationally," Gallup said. "Countries that are friendly to the United States and supportive of its foreign policy are generally rated positively, while countries that are unfriendly to the United States and oppose its policies are rated negatively."

Gallup reached 1,015 respondents by telephone. The poll has a margin of error of 4 percent.

Separately, a poll released Monday by The Israel Project showed that a majority of Americans believed that the United States should support Israel in "the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinians in the Middle East."

Support for Israel was 55 percent to 6 percent for the Palestinians. Sixteen percent responded "neither."

The Feb. 7-9 poll surveyed 1,000 likely voters by phone.

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