More than half of the Israeli public opposes the creation of a Palestinian state as part of a deal that would end the war against Hamas and normalize relations between Jerusalem and Riyadh, according to a new poll.
“Do you support or oppose the notion that as part of a deal to end the war—which will include long-term military quiet, guarantees from the United States, and an agreement with Arab states such as Saudi Arabia—Israel should agree to the establishment of a Palestinian state?” asked the January 2024 Israeli Voice Index, conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute’s Viterbi Family Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research.
Fifty-one percent of Israelis opposed this proposal, compared to 36% expressing support.
A breakdown by nationality reveals that a majority of Jewish Israelis are opposed to the idea (59%, versus 29% who are in favor), while among Arab Israelis the picture is reversed (69% support and only 10% opposed).
Jewish Israelis are fairly split on whether the primary aim of the war should be toppling Hamas or bringing home the hostages, with 42% expressing support for the former and 47% for the latter. Among Arab Israelis, 69% said freeing the hostages should be the main goal, versus a small minority (8%) who prioritized eliminating Hamas. A sizeable 23% of Arab Israeli respondents said they don’t know.
Only 39% of Israelis said that the State of Israel was successfully ensuring their security, a rate similar to that in 2022 but representing a sharp decline from 76% in 2020 and 56% in 2021.
The pollsters questioned a representative sample of 619 Jewish and 153 Arab Israelis aged 18 and over on Jan. 28-30. The margin of error for the entire sample is ±3.59% at a confidence level of 95%.
A November IDI survey found that only one in five right-wing Israeli Jews backs a two-state solution in exchange for American war support, whereas 75% of left-wing Israeli Jews support pursuing a two-state solution in return for U.S. assistance. Forty-five percent of Israeli Jews in the center agreed with this policy.
Overall, a slight majority (52%) of Israeli Jews opposed pursuing a two-state solution after the war in exchange for U.S. financial aid, while a majority (55%) of Israeli Arabs were in favor of it.
It remains unclear why the two-state solution question was connected to ending the war and Saudi normalization, and previously to the Biden administration and American assistance, and not asked as a standalone or follow-up question, which might have yielded different results.
In December, an IDI poll found that a majority of Jewish Israelis believe that antisemitism is driving international criticism of the Gaza war.
Asked about the mass demonstrations and public outcry against Israel’s military campaign against Hamas, 62% of Jewish residents said it was due to hatred of Israel and antisemitism, compared to 7.5% who said it was due to civilian casualties and destruction in Gaza and 22% who said both are equal drivers.
In contrast, only 10.5% of Arab Israelis believe that the protests abroad are due to antisemitism, while 52% believe that they are because of the devastation in Gaza and 11% said both equally.
At the time, about two-thirds of Israelis thought that the goal of toppling Hamas in Gaza was achievable, while only 35.5% believed it was possible to bring back all of the hostages.