August 20, 2019

Jews and Arabs Agree on More Than They Realize

“Judging from the current Israeli election cycle and the various campaigns competing, it would be easy to conclude that Arab and Jewish citizens of Israel have completely failed to build a shared life together. The campaigns are filled with insulting and racist messaging that is being disseminated every which way.

It’s a shame that Israeli leaders aren’t more attentive to the majority of the country’s citizens, who support values of cooperation, believe that relations between Jews and Arabs in the country are already good, and acknowledge the national identity of the other — the Jewish and Palestinian peoples, respectively. Those observations aren’t a lofty leftist theory, but the results of a new poll commissioned by Local Call.

The poll was written and analyzed by Dr. Dahlia Scheindlin and David Reis together with Local Call. The internet panel was conducted by New Wave Research between March 28 and April 1, and included a sample of 414 Arab and 411 Jewish Israelis (weighted to their actual proportions in society). The sample was drawn from an internet panel; the margin of error is 3.5 percent.

Despite the predominant appearance of schisms and hostility between the two populations in Israel, most of the Jewish respondents (53 percent) said that in their day-to-day lives, relations between Jews and Arabs are generally positive. Only one-third reported negative relations in their personal experience. An even smaller minority (13 percent) said that they don’t have enough contact with Arabs to answer the question. In other words, the overwhelming majority, 87 percent of the Jewish respondents, based their answers on personal experience.”

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