Israeli Arabs view country more positively than Jews, survey finds

Israeli Arabs view country more positively than Jews, survey finds

While 66% of Arabs see the overall situation as good, just 43.9% of the Jewish population agrees, according to new IDI study ahead of Israel’s 69th Independence Day

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Illustrative photo of an Israeli crowd. (Roni Schutzer/Flash90)
Illustrative photo of an Israeli crowd. (Roni Schutzer/Flash90)

More among Israel’s Arab community than its Jewish population are satisfied with life in Israel and slightly over half are proud to be Israeli citizens, according to a survey released on Sunday.

The results of the poll, conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University Peace Index, were released ahead of Israel’s 69th Independence Day that falls on Tuesday. The survey sought an appraisal of life in Israel, asking the question: “How’s it going?”

Among Jewish respondents, 43.9 percent said they see Israel’s situation as “good” or “very good” while among Arabs the figure was nearly two-thirds at 66%. As for personal circumstances, nearly three-quarters of Jews (74%) said their situation is “good” or “very good” compared to 57% of Arabs who felt the same way.

Similarly, according to the survey, 73% of Jews and 61 % of Arabs felt optimistic about Israel’s future, but while a majority from both communities were satisfied with Israel’s ability to maintain security in the country, only a small percentage of all Israelis felt that the government is attentive to their needs.

“Only 2 percent of Jews and 5 percent of all Israelis think Israeli leadership is doing a moderately good or very good job at paying attention to what citizens want,” the IDI said in a press release.

A majority of Jews believe the situation is not so good (47.9%) or not good at all (28.7%), according to the survey. In addition, over a third (35.6%) of those surveyed felt that when it comes to closing social gaps, the situation is “not so good” or “not good at all.”

The good appeared to outweigh the bad, however, with some 80% of respondents saying they felt proud to be Israeli (51.1% among Arab respondents, 86.1% among Jewish respondents.)

Optimism was also high with 74% of Jews and 61% of Arabs responding positively to a question about how they feel about the future. The majority of the public (82% of Jews and 58% of Arabs) also feel “to a moderately large extent” or “to a very large extent” a part of the state of Israel and its problems, according to the survey.

The country’s economic stability also ranked well with most Jews (62%) and Arabs (75%), who said Israel’s economic situation was “moderately good” or “good.”

Medicine, health, and education services as well as science, ranked high with 70% of respondents seeing the country’s achievements in medicine and health as “moderately good” or “good.” Some 61% of Israelis felt the same way about achievements in education and science.

The telephone survey, conducted on April 18-19, by the Midgam Research Institute, queried 600 respondents over the age of 18 who represented a national sample. Results have an error range of ±4.1% at a confidence level of 95%, the IDI said.

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