Palestinian survey shows strong support for terrorism

Almost three quarters of Palestinian Authority residents back formation of more terror groups like the Lion’s Den to kill…

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Almost three quarters of Palestinian Authority residents back formation of more terror groups like the Lion’s Den to kill Israelis.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

There is very strong support for terrorism against Israel among residents of the Palestinian Authority, a survey by a veteran Palestinian polling center published Tuesday showed.

The Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) found that 72% of respondents said they favored the formation of more independent terrorist groups, like the Lion’s Den from Jenin, to hit the Jewish state with terror attacks.

In addition, a whopping 87% says that the Palestinian Authority (PA) does not have the right to arrest member of these terror groups in order to prevent them from carrying out attacks against Israel or to provide them with protection.

A similar number believed that violence would be the most effective means of “ending the Israeli occupation and building an independent state,” with 51% choosing official armed struggle and 23% for the informal “popular resistance.” Only 21% favored negotiations with Israel. The center noted that this marks a rise of 10% favoring armed struggle and a nine percent drop in support for talks from a similar survey taken three months ago.

The stronger support for extremism is reflected in the pessimism shown regarding a “two-state solution” to the conflict. Only 32% favors it, and 69% think it’s no longer even feasible “due to the expansion of Israeli settlements.” A full 79% believe that the chances of the creation of such a Palestinian state in the next five years is slim to nonexistent.

The survey also covered internal Palestinian matters, where negativity abounded.

Very few have a positive evaluation of conditions in either the Gaza Strip (six percent) or Judea and Samaria (22%). A full 79% expects its government to fail to improve their economic conditions in the future, and 76% expect it to fail to organize legislative and presidential elections.

A whopping 81% of people polled say PA institutions are corrupt, and 69% said the same about Hamas institutions in Gaza. Some 59% assessed the PA as “a burden on the Palestinian people,” with 36% thinking it is an asset.

In terms of the freedom to say what they think, the numbers are more even. Out of those living in Judea and Samaria, 46% say they can criticize the PA without fear and 51% think they can’t. In the Gaza Strip, 48% think people there can criticize Hamas’ authorities without fear and 51% think they cannot.

On the unification front, there is very little confidence in the prospect of Hamas-PA reconciliation, with only a quarter (26%) being optimistic about it happening.

When asked about the most pressing problem confronting the Palestinians today, the largest percentage (38%) said the Israeli occupation, 22% answered corruption, 15% thought it was unemployment, 15% said it was the split or division between Hamas and the PA, and 6% responded that it was the internal violence.

The poll was taken among 1200 adults in personal interviews between December 7 and 10, with a margin of error of +/-3%.

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