Poll: Most Israelis Believe IDF Doing a Good Job at Gaza Border

Palestinian protesters during clashes with Israeli forces near the Gaza-Israel border in Rafiach, Gaza on May 14. (Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)

The majority of Israeli Jews believe that the IDF’s response to rioting at the Gaza border fence has been “measured” and “proper,” a new poll by the Israel Democracy Institute of Tel Aviv University shows.

With that, the vast majority of Israeli Arabs say that the army is using “too much force” in holding back Gaza Arab rioters who attempt to breach the fence and of late have been using kites laden with flammable materials to set fire to Israeli crops and forests.

According to the poll, a clear majority of the Jewish public (62 percent) think the IDF’s handling of these demonstrations was appropriate in terms of the force that was used. Among the Arab Israelis, a large majority (92 percent) think the IDF used excessive force against these demonstrations.

As to the reasons for the demonstrations, an overwhelming majority of the Jewish public (68 percent) agree with the claim that the Palestinian demonstrations at the Gaza border were planned by the Hamas, the poll shows. Among the Arab Israelis, the majority (62 percent) considers that the demonstrations are a result of the residents’ despair over their living conditions.

As to whether war was likely in the coming months, 43 percent of the Israeli public think that there is a high possibility of war in the coming months, while 46 percent think that the chances of war are low.

The Jewish public is split between those who believe the chances that Israel will be involved in an all-out war with Iran or some other military actor in the coming year are high (43 percent), and those who regard the chances of this as low (46 percent). In the Arab public, the majority (52.5 percent) views the chances of an all-out war with Iran in the foreseeable future as low, the poll showed.