Survey reveals: Israelis dissatisfied with Netanyahu’s foreign policy

According to a new survey published by the Israeli Institute for Regional Foreign Policy, Mitvim, the Israeli public is unhappy with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government conduct in the international arena. The survey, meant to give an accurate description of public opinion in Israel for 2016, touched base on many issues pertaining to foreign policy.

It revealed that Israelis are generally dissatisfied with the government’s conduct in international relations, the stalled peace process with the Palestinians, Israel’s standing in the international community, the government’s foreign policy, and the Foreign Ministry’s performance. The survey showed surprising indication in which Israelis do not perceive the Islamic Republic of Iran, nor the anti-Israeli Boycott Divest and Sanctions movement as their top priorities, rather emphasizing the importance of strengthening Israel’s ties with the United States.

Two additional issues considered to be central topics are the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and the country’s relationship with moderate Arab countries in the chaotic region. Despite a small level of improvement compared to 2015, only 10% of the Israeli public currently feels Israel is doing well in terms of its relationship with other nations and global organizations. A large majority thinks that its foreign policy does not work according to any clear-cut principles, and that the lack of a full-time foreign affairs minister, since Prime Minister Netanyahu also acts as Israel’s top diplomat, hurts the country’s national security.

While the Israeli public at large views Israel as a local power, it does not hold the view that “the world is against us,” while most of Israel believes that regional cooperation with Arab countries is attainable. With regard to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the survey revealed Israelis believe that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should present his own solution to the decades-old conflict, with a demand for international incentives for peace, including normalization of relations with Arab countries, US security guarantees and improving relations with the European Union.