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Americans Changing Their Minds About the Israel/Palestine Issue

It’s impossible in the United States to get a balanced view from the US government or the main stream media about what is happening in Israel vis-a-vis Palestine.  In spite of this, more Americans are waking up to the injustices perpetrated against the Palestinians for over 65 years by Zionist Israelis.  To get a more revealing look, you’ll find gems like this news item from The Times of Israel.  Not only does it talk about growing support for Palestine by Americans, its pictures reinforce and demonstrate the reality of the Israeli Military Occupation.  The separation wall is strangling places like Bethlehem and the illegal settlements in the Occupied West Ban continue to expand along with additional confiscation of Palestinian lands.

Poll: One-state solution to conflict finds rising support in US

71% of respondents encourage bi-national state if two states not possible; more Americans tacitly back Palestinian statehood bid at UN
December 6, 2014, 6:27 am Updated: December 6, 2014, 7:51 am

A growing number of Americans back the idea of a one-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and over two-thirds of those surveyed in a recent poll published Friday by the Brookings Institution said they would call for a single democratic state should a two-state solution prove nonviable.

According to the findings of the survey, the percentage of those polled who want Washington to advocate a single bi-national state with equal citizenship for Jews and Arabs has risen from 24 percent to 34%. The poll was conducted online in November 2014 by Shibley Telhami, the Anwar Sadat Professor for Peace and Development at the University of Maryland. The authors did not specify over what time period that 10 point hike took place.

Of the 1,008 American respondents, 71% said that if a two-state solution fails, they favor a bi-national democratic state over a Jewish state which deprives Palestinians of citizenship. Only 24% of respondents said they “favor the Jewishness of Israel more than its democracy.”

The Netanyahu-led coalition collapsed this week in part because of tensions over a draft bill proposing legislation enshrining Israel’s identity as a Jewish state.

A growing number of critics, including former finance minister Yair Lapid and former justice minister Tzipi Livni, as well as President Reuven Rivlin and his predecessor Shimon Peres, have argued that the bill would alienate Israel’s non-Jewish minorities and set a harmful precedent.

The Brookings poll also demonstrated overwhelming American opposition to Israeli West Bank settlement construction, with 63% against.

The authors said, however, that here is a significant difference among Democrats, Republicans and Independents on that issue: 75% of Democrats oppose, compared to 62% of Independents and 51% of Republicans.

At the same time, despite their opposition, most Americans polled said they do not advocate any form of sanctions against Israel for continued settlement activity. Still, more than one in four — 28% — supported the idea of economic sanctions by Washington or the United Nations, and another 11% want the US to “take more serious action.”

View of the Jewish settlement of Efrat, south of Jerusalem, in the West Bank, on April 23, 2014. (Photo credit: Hadas Parush/Flash 90)

The survey also indicated that Americans are split on the issue of a unilateral Palestinian statehood bid. Should the Palestinians seek international recognition at the United Nations, which Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas intends to do this month, only 27% of Americans surveyed said the US should oppose the move.

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas gives a press conference following his meeting with South African president, on November 26, 2014, in Pretoria, South Africa. (photo credit: AFP Photo/Stefan Heunis)

Almost half, 45%, recommended the US abstain from the vote, while 25% said the US should vote in favor. Republicans were more clearly in favor of Washington shooting down Palestinian statehood at the UN, with 46% calling for opposition compared to a mere 15% of Democrats.The survey had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4%.