The 2009 Democracy Index, published by the Israel Democracy Institute on Sunday[:]...I am trying to be positive.
The Israeli public believes in freedom of expression as a general value, but for the most part refuses to allow harsh criticism to be expressed against the state. 74% support “Freedom of expression for everyone, regardless of their opinions.” However, 58% agree that “political speech should not be permitted to express harsh criticism of the state of Israel.” This is a significant increase as compared to 48% in 2003.
Growing support for denying Arabs' rights
53% of the Jewish public supports encouraging Arabs to emigrate from Israel. 77% of immigrants support this idea, compared with 47% of the veteran public. 33% of veteran Jews are accepting of the inclusion of Arab parties in the government, by comparison with 23% of immigrants.
Only 27% of respondents objected to the statement that there should be “a Jewish majority in decisions relating to the fate of the country,” by comparison with 2003, when 38% objected to this statement. These figures indicate relatively broad support for decreasing the political rights of Israel’s Arab minority.
54% of the general public (Jews and Arabs) agrees that “only citizens who are loyal to the state are entitled to benefit from civil rights” (56% of the veterans, 67% of immigrants and 30% of the Arabs). 38% of the entire Jewish public believe that Jewish citizens should have more rights than non-Jewish citizens (43% of the veterans hold this belief, versus 23% of immigrants). In addition, 41% of veteran Jews are of the opinion that “Israeli Arabs face greater discrimination than Jewish Israelis,” compared to 28% of immigrants holding this view.
FSU immigrants more hawkish
The use of violence: 33% of immigrants from the FSU think that political violence is legitimate, as compared to 35% of Israeli Arabs and 22% of veteran Israelis. Among the general public, the greatest legitimacy is given to the use of political violence by young people aged 18 to 30, at 27%.
Evacuating settlements: 48% of Israelis are not prepared to evacuate any settlements within the framework of a permanent agreement; 37% are prepared for the evacuation of isolated settlements; and 15% are prepared to evacuate all the settlements over the green line.
The position of the immigrants from the FSU is more hawkish than that of the general Jewish public: 64% are not prepared for settlements to be evacuated in the framework of a permanent agreement; 30% are prepared for the evacuation of isolated settlements; and 6% are prepared to evacuate all the settlements. (Ynet, August 3rd, 2009)
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