Survey: Most Jewish Israelis Support Transfer of Arabs

Most of the Jewish public in Israel supports expelling Arabs, according to a survey of the public's views on political extremism conducted by Haifa University's Center for the Study of National Security.

The survey indicates that 63.7 percent of the Jewish respondents said the government should encourage Israeli Arabs to emigrate. Almost half of the Jewish respondents - 48.6 percent - said the treatment that Arabs in Israel receive from the government is too sympathetic.

More than half - 55.3 percent - think Israeli Arabs endanger the state's security and 45.3 percent support depriving Israeli Arabs of the right to vote and to be elected. About one-quarter of the Jewish respondents said they would consider voting for a party like the outlawed Kach, if such a party were contending in the next elections.

The survey, headed by Professor Gavriel Ben David, consisted of telephone interviews with a representative sample of 1,016 Israelis.

Respondents were also asked about another minority - the foreign workers. A large majority of the Jewish respondents - 72.1 percent - favored restricting foreign workers' entrance into Israel and 54.2 percent said the economic situation was getting worse because the foreign workers were taking the jobs.

Dr. Dafna Kanti-Nissim, a partner in the study, said the survey reflects a known phenomenon in the world, in which a threatened public tends to develop hostility toward the minorities living in it.

"There is a prevalent conception in the public that identifies Israeli Arabs with the threat of terror," says Kanti-Nissim. "The foreign workers are seen as an economic threat, although in fact they are not threatening the work places of most of the Israelis."

The survey indicates a worrying increase in the extremism of the respondents' attitudes.