NETANYAHU’S POPULARITY SOARS Following Washington Trip & Defense of Israel
U.S. President Barack Obama listens to Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, May 20, 2011. Obama’s call for Israel to give Palestinians territory it has occupied since 1967 stunned Netanyahu and pushed the leaders’ thawing relationship back into the freezer. (REUTERS/Jim Young)
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s popularity has soared following his trip to Washington DC and his defense of Israel. Netanyahu publicly refuted Barack Obama’s push to hand over much of Israel to the Hamas-Fatah terrorist alliance.
Despite tensions in Washington during PM’s visit, Israelis generally don’t believe Obama is hostile to Israel or that U.S.-Israel relations have been harmed, indicating that the public seems to be turning a deaf ear to analysts who criticized Netanyahu’s address to Congress.
It’s doubtful that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in his wildest, most optimistic dreams, would have dared to imagine when he set off for the United States last week that Israelis would respond to his six-day trip so enthusiastically: According to a new Haaretz poll, they are giving the visit high marks, considering it an overwhelming success.
The poll, conducted by the Dialog organization, under the supervision of Prof. Camil Fuchs of the Tel Aviv University Statistics Department, showed that 47 percent of the Israeli public believes the U.S. trip was a success, while only 10 percent viewed it as a failure.
Nearly half of the public felt “pride” at seeing Netanyahu address the joint session of Congress on Tuesday, while only 5 percent deemed it a “missed opportunity.” The rest expressed no opinion, while 20 percent of those questioned said they hadn’t watched the speech.