A new poll has shown that a majority of Israelis are skeptical of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s claim that Israel achieved a “great military and political” victory over Hamas in the latest round of fighting in the Gaza Strip.
The poll, published in Thursday’s Haaretz newspaper, shows that 54 percent of those surveyed believe there was no clear winner in the 50 days of war. The fighting killed more than 2,100 Palestinians — 1,000 of them enemy gunmen, Israel says — and 70 Israelis.
The survey questioned 464 Israelis on Wednesday and had a margin of error of 4.6 percent.
Later that night, Netanyahu said in a televised speech that Israel dealt Hamas “a heavy blow.”
Calm has prevailed since the two sides agreed this week to an open-ended truce, settling for an ambiguous interim agreement in exchange.
The results came after a Channel 2 survey on Wednesday found that Netanyahu’s popularity had plummeted since the beginning of the IDF’s Operation Protective Edge in early July.
The survey, conducted by Shiluv Millward Brown, indicated that 59% of participants were happy with the prime minister’s handling of the campaign, and just 32% were happy with Netanyahu.
The same survey showed that 54% of respondents were opposed to the ceasefire, and 37% supported it.
A majority — 59% — do not believe Israel won against Hamas (29% believe it did). Still, the public’s satisfaction with the army’s performance stands at 83%.
The channel did not provide details on methodology.
A Haaretz survey published Wednesday morning showed Netanyahu with even lower support. Fifty percent were pleased with the prime minister, and 40% were not, its results showed. The prime minister, it noted, saw 77% support in an August 5 Haaretz poll.
A Channel 2 poll Monday showed that on August 25 — 49 days into Operation Protective Edge and before the ceasefire — only 38 percent of Israelis “supported” Netanyahu, while a full 50% were dissatisfied.
That number represented a steep decline for Netanyahu and a steady deterioration over the course of Operation Protective Edge. Just four days previously, on August 21, his approval rating was 55%; and three weeks previously, on August 5, his approval rating stood at 63%.
On July 23, shortly after the start of the ground operation in Gaza aimed at destroying Hamas’s “terror tunnels,” Netanyahu’s approval rating was 82%.
Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.