Amid escalating tensions between the United States and Israel, a new public opinion poll indicates that more than three-quarters of Israeli Jews believe that last month’s Geneva accord will fail to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program.
In addition, according to the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) poll, almost half of all Israeli Jews believe their country should reduce its dependence on the United States in the international arena and seek new allies, the Jerusalem Post reported Tuesday
Two prominent Israeli Cabinet members have voiced similar sentiments in recent weeks. Israel Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said two weeks ago that Israel depends too much on the United States and needed to build more alliances.
Likewise, Israeli Economy and Trade Minister Naftali Bennett warned Tuesday that the Jewish state cannot rely economically on any one country, according to a separate story reported by the Post
“Israel must not be overly dependent on any one organization or state” and “should not allow herself to be hostage to anyone,” said Bennett.
Bennett instructed Israel’s Foreign Trade Administration to expand such deals beyond the United States and Europe, adding that Jerusalem should work to accelerate accords with Brazil, Canada, India, and China.
According to the IDI poll
, Israeli Jews agreed by a 49 to 45 percent margin that their country should look for new allies.The remaining 6 percent had no opinion.
But when asked if Israel would be successful in finding new allies, 70 percent of Israeli Jews said the country would not find any. By a 71 to 26 percent margin, they believe the U.S. to be Israel’s most loyal and important ally.
Most Israeli Jews, 55 percent, believe that their country is moderately dependent on the United States for assistance, while 24 percent think it is totally dependent and 17 percent not at all dependent.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attacked the Geneva nuclear deal with Iran as an “historic mistake,”and many Israelis appear to hold similar views.
According to the IDI poll, 77 percent of Israelis said they did not believe the Iran deal would prevent the Islamic Republic from acquiring an atomic weapon, while 18 percent thought it would end Iran’s nuclear weapons program.
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